Big 4 job
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This article has been written by Oishika Banerji, from Amity Law School, Kolkata. This is an exhaustive article that deals with how a student of a government college can crack a big 4 job.


The world is fast changing so are the job sectors. With the increase in the willingness of the graduates to enter in the job sectors, the competition for the same is also at a rise. Education is changing, the means of delivering education is also changing. India like other countries in the world is also preferring privatization over its own government’s authority in all spheres, education being one of them. The entire system of imparting education be it in school, universities, colleges have become a business that is being regulated by domestic and international companies. Indeed privatization has been useful to uplift education at a global platform by the usage of technology, qualified faculties, infrastructure,  finance and available resources. This has created a step forward for those who hail from private universities and schools compared to those who belong to a government college or school. But the job market is open for all with preference to those who are capable of getting through it and diligently with all potentials do justice to the job at hand. Hence be it from a government college or a private institute, it is the student who matters and regulates as to what he or she has in his or her store. The big four jobs are a welcoming opportunity of any graduate hailing from any field to work in. This is because of the brand value the job carries along with it. Along with the same facilities, salary, infrastructure are also counted whenever one talks about big four jobs. Every graduate who wants a corporate taste in their lives dreams of working in one of the big four firms for these firms directs the working and functioning of the other firms existing in the job industry. Similarly, if the graduate is from a government college it is no big issue to get into one of these firms for all that is required is determination, willingness and hard work. 

What is a big 4 job 

The big four jobs consist of four firms that specialise in auditing. They are:

  1. Deloitte
  2. PricewaterhouseCoopers or PWC 
  3. KPMG
  4. Ernst & Young 

All these four firms specialize in auditing, tax consultancy, advisory services which includes merger and amalgamation of companies, finance projects that are coming up or are already in existence, creating business models, restructuring of the corporate sector as and when necessary, risk management, cybersecurity and safeguard from hacking, ways to improve performance of a firm working, internal auditing of a firm and the list goes endless. Legal advice is also provided by these four firms to companies worldwide. None of these four firms can be treated as a single firm. Being professional service networks by nature, these four firms are interconnected with several other firms who are working under these firms and are seeking advice and help from them whenever required. They, therefore, share a common name in terms of the intellectual property rights that have been assigned to them, the brand value they have and the standards of quality maintained by them are all the same. Therefore these networks are similar to a network created by a law firm. Therefore what can, therefore, be inferred from the above discussion is that the job industry is working under these big four firms as these firms serve by creating a framework with required rules and regulations for other companies to function efficiently. Audits of both public, as well as private companies, are taken care of by these four firms. They are equally capable of providing services to those who are in need of the same. This is the obvious reason as to why these four firms are termed as big four firms. These four firms are the largest networks of professional service around the globe. The detailing of these four big firms have been provided below:

  • Deloitte- The firm with the largest professional service network in fields of revenue, Deloitte is one among the big four firms. After applying for the job post, Deloitte makes the candidates go through two rounds of interview after the candidate applies for the job, only after which a candidate is selected as an employee in the firm.  The process of  carrying out the entire method of selecting and recruiting an employee is provided  below: 
  1. Application by the candidate- This consists of the curriculum vital that is to be provided to the company by the candidate that will be inclusive of all his achievements and strengths, skills and experiences if any.
  2. The first interview round- This round takes an entire view of the candidate who is interested to apply. To be precise an overall assessment of the candidate takes place in this round.
  3. The second interview round- This is the round in which the candidate is presumed to have been recruited by the firm. Therefore discussions that take place with the candidate focus majorly on the remuneration tone provided, work culture in the firm etc. 
  4. Employment is offered to the candidate if the above criteria are met with by the candidates.
  • PricewaterhouseCooper(PWC)- Considered to be the second-largest professional service networks, PWC also ensures that the employees working under it are capable, specialized and skilled as to the work they are professing. The selection procedures involve making the candidates go through case studies, activities in the form of a group along with interview and aptitude tests. Thus what can be noticed is that the firm ensures a complete examination of the entire candidate to learn about the candidate and his or her potential. 
  • KPMG- Another addition to the big four firms is KPMG which provides audit, tax and advisory services like the other two firms. KPMG involves online assessments as a part of the selection procedure of employees. Interviews like all other firms are common to this firm as well. Therefore before providing the candidate with an offer letter and employment opportunity, the firm ensures a proper and accurate screening process. 
  • Ernst & Young- This is another largest professional service network which along with audit and taxation deals with telecommunication and transport sectors also. Ernst & Young give preference to the application submitted by the employees and because it has developed a recognition and reputation, it makes the applicants go through selection procedures in order to ensure that the goodwill associated with the company is not at risk. The selection procedures involve group discussions, personality test, aptitude test, personal interview.  

Therefore the above picture that can be viewed is the factors that need to be taken care of to be an employee of the big four firms. The selection procedure is never easy to go away with. To be successful in the same there are requirements for a lot of traits in a candidate that the job industry looks for.  

How can a government college student crack a big 4 job

A government college student can definitely crack a job in a big four firm. India has given birth to several government colleges that have become the face of Indian education. Taking into account the Indian Institutes of Technology and the Indian Institute of Management, students graduating from the same have had and are having a smooth way to walk through. But the fact is that not every student can graduate from recognized IITs and IIMs. Also, there is a section of students who come from a family that cannot support high fees of private institutions and therefore the only option that remains left with them is to get admitted to government colleges that are not very well recognized and lack infrastructure, regular classes, modern approaches etc. What can be inferred from the above discussion is that if any fresh graduate wants to join big four firms, what is necessary for them is grooming and self-development in order to be able to clear the selection procedures and work as an employee in the same. It is not difficult to get into the big four companies as has been reported in several surveys and it is rather easier to adjust and learn work from the big four companies before going to any other companies. Each of the firms under the label of the big four has their own rules for the procedure of hiring. PWC reportedly had a plan to hire a total of 1400 graduates along with a wide scope for interns and school pass outs. An application of 3,900 was received by the firm with the firm having an acceptance rate fixed at 5%. Similar acceptance rates were also present for the other three firms. While KPMG receives applications of about 20,000, it is only 1000 that it accepts. 2000 applicants are selected for appearing in the interview process in Deloitte from among 30,000 applications. Therefore the competition level is very high if one has to make it to the big four. The necessities an applicant must be aware of while applying for a job in the big four firms are provided below: 

  1. Knowing the division of the big four and where to work on: Awareness is necessary to work in the big four firms. Awareness of skills and potential is important as well. What many government college students barring a few lacks is the ability of decision-making. As the big four firms offer a variety of sections to work on, it is advised to be aware as to which field to work on. This helps in proper utilization of available resources and potentials. 
  2. Internships: Internships are useful because it gives a taste of practicality along with the theoretical understanding. A lot of government colleges do not provide for such scope or time period where the student can pursue internship and that becomes detrimental when it comes to pursuing a job on a full-fledged basis. Therefore if also the college does not provide scope for an internship, the student should be finding a reasonable time period to pursue the same. 
  3. Understanding the requirement: An applicant should always develop a strategy before applying to the big four. A lot of students in the government colleges do not attend regular classes and therefore grades vary for them. This according to several students becomes a negative aspect. But in real life, this scenario is completely absent for grades; it is the skills which matter for the big four firms. If PWC is taken into concern, it is one of the big four firms that do not take into concern grades but on the other hand Deloitte, Ernst and Young and KPMG do observe grades. Therefore it becomes easier for the applicant to choose as to which one to prefer according to grades obtained. Therefore an understanding of recruitment skills is necessary. 
  4. Off-campus placement: Several government colleges except for a few recognized supports on-campus placements. Therefore responsibilities fall on the students to keep a track as to which firm is offering a job or vacancy. For applying in the big four firms, the requirements that one has to meet is the ability to solve logical reasoning, verbal logic, personality tests which comprises basic aptitude assessment of an individual.

The above-mentioned necessities are required to be kept in mind in order to apply for a big four firm job and get through the same if having a degree from the government colleges. 


To be honest, there is no difference between a student from a government college and that of any other college when it comes to getting a job in the big four firms. It is a respectable job with a lot of burden on the shoulder which can be carried out swiftly without much chaos if some basic requirements are adopted and carried out. It is, in fact, true that students coming out of government colleges which are not very well established are lagging behind those who hail from private institutes because of lack of scope and opportunities. But at the end of the day, everyone is in the mainstream of competition and persistence. If one works persistently and diligently to get a job in the big four firms then no college background can restrict the same from happening or taking place. 


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