In short, making it to Partner in the Big 4 is very difficult. This post set out how to make Partner at a Big 4 firm.
First of all, the Big 4 companies hire intelligent and ambitious individuals. It is a component of who they are. This means that you are surrounded by talented colleagues that all, at least in the beginning of their careers, aspire to progress within the Big 4.
Yes, a Big 4 firm may have more partners than a mid-tier firm due to their size. But at a Big 4 firm, the ratio of partners to non-partners is substantially higher than in a mid-tier firm.
How long does it take to become a Big 4 partner?
Most people need 10–15 years to become partners in the Big 4.
Big 4 partners typically need to amass a significant clientele before they are deemed prepared for partnership. It takes time to develop a customer portfolio this size.
The majority of Big 4 type work is frequently awarded to extremely senior decision-makers in big corporations. Before you can establish connections that lead to working with this group of people, you must possess a particular level of technical expertise, gravitas, and authority.
Developing the abilities to go from being technically adept to being able to manage a group of people and bring in significant pieces of work
What qualities are required to become a Big 4 Partner?
Regardless of your service line or the business you are in, there are some traits that all successful Big 4 partners have. In fact, a lot of senior partners will claim that they can already foresee who the future partners will be on a trainee’s first day at a company.
- Ambitious and Motivation – Many members of the Big 4 didn’t attend the greatest institution or school. They frequently arrived there as a result of their ambition, determination, and self-discipline to work at greater levels.
- Management and Direction – Are you capable of managing a group of people? sufficient for you to hand off the “doing” to them so you can concentrate on “managing” or “getting” new business?
- Commerciality – For instance, do you consider more than simply the task at hand or the wider picture? Are you eager to discover new, easier, or less expensive approaches to provide superb client care and accomplish a task?
- Resilience – Specifically to bounce back from any setbacks or market downturns
How is becoming a Big 4 partner different to becoming a partner in a mid-tier firm?
The sheer scale is one significant distinction between the Big 4 firms and the top 20 or even top 10 accounting firms.
The Big 4 have generally more organised, structured, and prevalent personnel management, promotion decisions, and workforce planning than other organisations.
How much do Big 4 Partners make?
The fact that the Big 4 partners don’t actually receive a salary is something that should be noted regarding their compensation. For staff payscales check out my recent post here
By acquiring partnership units, partners share in the earnings. Yes, we refer to stock-like units. The majority of the businesses are organised as LLPs, which means they have member units rather than shares and are therefore awarded a share of profits.
It is required of new partners to “buy-in” to the partnership when they are formed. Around £300,000 is normally needed to buy in. Most people join the partnership by borrowing money from it, then repaying it over time.
With that said, here is what UK Partners made in 2021:
|Firm||UK Partner Pay 2021|