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Big 4 Clientele

 
#1 Big 4 Clientele
22/11/2012 00:32

Bravehearted

During my assessment centre at Deloitte, the Director kept hammering home - maybe bragging even - that they work with clients that are the absolute blue chips of their respective industries.

This got me wondering whether this is the case at all Big 4 or whether this is just another ammo in the forever ongoing willy measuring contest of the Big 4.

Obviously absolutely NOT asking those in the know to list client names - just give views of how correct this notion is.

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#2 RE: Big 4 Clientele
22/11/2012 08:38

Bushy Eyebrow Partner to Bravehearted (#1)

Whoopeedoo, one of the four main accountancy companies works with some household names... hold the front page!!!

What he probably failed to mention, however, is that this means that the staff working for such clients are "small cogs in a big machine" and probably have small, defined, arguably meanial roles in the scheme of things. Like going over the minutia of their ledgers and doing glorified stock takes. Somebody working for a smaller company will have more opportunity to actually deal with real "strategic issues", in my opinion.

I would recommend speaking to people in their HR department. See how much "time of day" they give you. You can tell a lot about a company by speaking to its HR staff, in situations where they can be sure you do not and will not ever have any leverage over them. Do they have an attitude? Are they self-important and pompous? Do they think they "run" the company? Or are they nice, approachable, down to earth people? You decide.

But one thing I would suggest, however, is that big is not always better. In the case of companies with multiple owners, it is usually worse I would say.

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#3 RE: Big 4 Clientele
22/11/2012 09:34

marsday to Bravehearted (#1)

The fact that Big 4 do have rosters of blue chip clients is less a testament to their capabilities as much as an indictment of the lack of imagination and courage to challenge the status quo which is endemic in most large organisations. Effectively the consulting spend needs to be justified internally, and the finger pointed if anything significant goes wrong - both of which are much easier with a Deloitte or PwC. The truly alarming phenomenon is how between them they are busily assimilating some highly respected, independent firms, reducing competition on the consulting sector, reducing options for clients, reducing objectivity, reducing the independence of due diligence.

It's not a willy measuring contest it's a drive to carry on until there are only 4 left, then they will stop competing and turn on each other.

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