Big 4 - audit, advisory, consulting, tax exit opportunities

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TheWham
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Hi everyone!

Out of these 4 service lines at the big 4, what are the exit opportunities of each one? Is audit best if you want to move towards controller or CFO and advisory best if you want to move toward IB/PE?

Thanks!
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natninja
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TheWham So most common exits are:

Audit: financial control, FP&A, business partnering, advisory at same/other firm, consulting

Advisory: advisory at other firm, consulting, IB, maybe PE (if post audit PE fund management)

Consulting: general business management roles likely related to specialist area, politics, more consulting

Tax: more tax, also transaction and structuring roles but mostly more tax.

Having said that other exits are possible. I know people who went audit to IB directly and I went directly into PE fund management from audit (though everyone else on the team spent a year in CF/TS first).
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TheWham
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natninja thanks so much!

How common and doable is that transition from audit to CF/TS?

Would it be better to start in audit or try go straight there?
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natninja
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(Original post by TheWham)
natninja thanks so much!

How common and doable is that transition from audit to CF/TS?

Would it be better to start in audit or try go straight there?
Fairly common transition. I'd argue starting in audit would be better - someone who has time in both audit and CF is a much better future CFO candidate especially if some form of UK SOX comes in... But then again as an ex-auditor I'm somewhat biased.



CF/TS is far harder to get into as a grad so you wouldn't apply to all four for that just in case. Also some audit groups it's easier to transfer - certain areas of FS almost everyone who wants to move makes it whereas if you've mainly been working on small owner managed businesses it will be much more challenging to move across.
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thinkc234
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(Original post by natninja)
Fairly common transition. I'd argue starting in audit would be better - someone who has time in both audit and CF is a much better future CFO candidate especially if some form of UK SOX comes in... But then again as an ex-auditor I'm somewhat biased.



CF/TS is far harder to get into as a grad so you wouldn't apply to all four for that just in case. Also some audit groups it's easier to transfer - certain areas of FS almost everyone who wants to move makes it whereas if you've mainly been working on small owner managed businesses it will be much more challenging to move across.
How difficult is it to transfer from Audit to CF/TS once you are qualified at each of the Big Four firms? I know that PWC have an internal 'transfer window' for after you qualify but I am unsure of the others.

Also will working at a Big Four regional office make it more difficult compared to working in London if you want to transfer from Audit to CF/TS once you are qualified?
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natninja
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(Original post by thinkc234)
How difficult is it to transfer from Audit to CF/TS once you are qualified at each of the Big Four firms? I know that PWC have an internal 'transfer window' for after you qualify but I am unsure of the others.

Also will working at a Big Four regional office make it more difficult compared to working in London if you want to transfer from Audit to CF/TS once you are qualified?
Difficulty will depend on market conditions, business needs and even the specific audit team you are transferring from. A transfer out of a team that deals with small owner managed businesses in regions in a down market is likely nigh impossible, a transfer from a team with more relevant expertise in London in a buoyant market and it's more likely than not a transfer would be successful.


Yes it is harder on regions as networking does help and most regional offices have only a small TS/CF presence if any.
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