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Advice for Big 4 Experienced Hires | Big 4 Interview Questions

Advice for Big 4 Experienced Hires

If you’re an experienced hire looking to get a job at one of the Big 4 accounting firms, the recruiting is a bit different than the way it works for grads. However, the behavioral questions they ask grads will be similar as fit is very important to the EY, PWC, KPMG and Deloitte, even before they start looking at heavily into your capabilities.

First of all, you would probably be wondering how you go about searching for a Big 4 job as an experienced hire. Well quite simply, most big 4 firms do their recruiting themselves, i.e. they do not contract specialist recruitment firms (although this can be the case for some of the more specialised hard to find talent roles, nevertheless, their internal recruitment department can still handle this).  What this means is, if you are looking for a specific open position. Simply go to the KPMG, Deloitte, EY or PWC website in your region and search for open positions in the experienced hires section. It’s as simple as that.

Further to the above, the Big 4 accounting firms are large, so they have a constant revolving carousel of employees in and out the door normally, therefore they are always on the lookout for talent. This means making contact with the more senior people (senior managers and above) in teams you are interested in can help you in potentially getting an interview if they are looking for talented individuals or something comes up (which it likely is to in the not too distant future).

The principles for an experience hire are quite similar to that of a graduate, as described in our Breaking Big 4 eBook. The difference is that they will want to know a lot more about your prior working experiences and relevance. So you need to have in order your prior experience. The best thing you can do is try and work it is to present your working experience as being as most relevant as possible to the job you are applying for. So for the behavioral questions, try to come up with specific working examples where you can, and try use ones relevant to the position being applied to. If your prior experience is from a very similar job, or in a similar working industry, you will need to be very specific and explain well. The interviewers will obviously have a good understanding of what you do in this case and so will probe further, so don’t even try and hoodwink them.

Finally, it is very important to explain why you want this job and why you are leaving your old job. If it is because you don’t like your bosses in your current or last job, or you hated the job, try not to express it this way. It’s generally not a good idea to express negativity towards others and in this case is important to show that you want the job because it is something you truly want to do and feel that you can build a long and successful career in. For that reason, you should focus more on the development gained from working at a Big 4 firm, working with and learning from highly regarded senior colleagues and also the diversity of work and ability to work on some of the most highly regarded clients.

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