Many of you have been contacting me for details regarding a Big 4 internship. A lot of the time you want to know the Big 4 internship salary. Yes, these internships are paid. The Big 4 accounting firms not only pay for their internships, but they pay well. You will actually be making more money than a first year associate. You will make approximately $23/hr during your internship (this is the rate of a first-year employee). However, unlike a salaried employee, you will also have the opportunity to earn overtime. During my internship I was working a bit of overtime, and was more than willing because I was being paid $34/hr. If you get an internship, you are basically guaranteed to receive a job offer unless you really mess up. The job offer is yours to lose. This past year was a little different for some of the firms. I heard that KPMG only offered jobs to 60% of its interns in some offices. PwC and EY, however, were around 90% across the board. Usually you have to get poor ratings to not get a job (especially when we aren’t in a recession). The Big 4 internship gives you a great opportunity to see what it’s like to work in the industry because you will have the same responsibilities as a new associate. So if you’re still in college and thinking of pursuing accounting, I highly recommend that you aim for a Big 4 internship because this is the best way to secure a job offer. Good luck!
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Big 4 internship recruiting used to have a specific time of the year, but now it’s spreading out and you should begin to consider any event you attend a recruiting opportunity. As you probably know, the Big 4 accounting firms have great internship offerings. They are very structured and during your internship your firm will give you actual responsibilities, unlike many other industries. During the internship recruiting process, you should inquire with each firm about the different internships they offer. Each firm will offer internships in tax and assurance (audit). Many offices will also have internships in transaction services and some will have internships in forensic accounting, which has recently become popular. You should also look into the special programs being offered. Some of the Big 4 accounting firms offer international internships. For example, PwC allows some recruits to intern in the UK, Italy or Germany.
If you’re a Sophomore, you should look into the Sophomore leadership programs being offered. These usually last for a few days and include an office visit. This will allow you to build a relationship with the Big 4. If the firm is impressed with you during this short time, they will invite you back after your Junior year for an internship. Getting in on a Sophomore leadership program is one of the quickest ways to landing a Big 4 internship (and later, a job).