The graduate guide: what your chosen “big four” firm says about you


We have almost approached the final hurdle of the dreaded ‘application season’. All of your friends have managed to secure interviews, summer internships, or vacation schemes guaranteeing them future employment. Meanwhile, all you have achieved is the countless, never-ending, insurmountable quantity of rejection emails – everyone now sees you as a ‘slacker’. But, who’s more of a loser? The ones suffering alone in the peril that is unemployment? Or, the ones who have now made KPMG their entire personality trait? Let’s take a look:

Deloitte: You convince yourself the tedious, incessant hours are necessary for a ‘work- life balance’. ‘Work hard, play hard’ will become your new mantra. The reality is you will begin to question your life choices and exit the firm in only a matter of years. You chose to apply there because the firm sounds the classiest, coolest, and smartest. You remember not to remind people the state you were in after your interview. (It was a real knock to the ego – wasn’t it?)

PwC: Your superiority complex has become unfathomable considering you constantly tell everyone you work with the ‘most prestigious’ of the ‘Big Four’. It seems you have not yet come to terms with the fact not everyone ranks it as the ‘flex’ you truly believe it to be. PwC may convince you that you’ve become one of the ‘cool kids’, but deep down everyone refers to you as the ‘arrogant and pretentious’ one.

Ernst & Young: You see yourself as a more laid-back, chill employee. You relish telling people you never applied to the other three. The truth is their rejections ruined you for days on end. You love to inform people your firm truly cares for their employees and associates, ensuring you have a life outside of work. In reality, you’re convincing everyone else. EY is a legitimate ‘Big Four’ firm, and doesn’t employ people just because they’re ‘attractive’.

KPMG: The firm most people have heard of – even the humanities students. The majority tend to criticise the firm. You convince everyone it’s because they’re still hurt by the rejection email that they received years ago. But there proves to be truth in the fact your firm is seen as the stuck-up ‘Number 4’. Maybe one day your conversation starter won’t be stating the fact you work at KPMG, but a realisation that it is in fact the Big Three and KPMG (their little brother). Yes, these firms are amongst the largest and most professional services in the world, involved in the boredom of accounting, auditing, and consulting. Yes, they are viewed as being highly reputable and competent in their respective fields. And, no, this was not written by a humanities student incapable of grasping the fact there are students who will not face the impending doom of unemployment, that I myself dread.

Image: Avi1111 via Wikimedia Commons

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