Graduate development opportunities at KPMG
Of the Big 4, KPMG has the largest full-time team dedicated to helping employees gain qualifications – the Professional Qualifications Team (PQT), who have taken a variety of these exams between them.
All professional qualification training is conducted over three years, with courses taking place during the working week at no expense to the employee. Whilst individual study is essential for all courses, employees do not have their personal time taken away for an official course or further training. Pass rates for successful completion of various qualification papers are significantly higher than the industry standard.
Audit and advisory
There are many qualifications available in audit and advisory. Typically, graduates will discuss this at interview, so it is advisable for them to have swotted up on the differences between them, and the relevance of specific ones to their individual graduate programme.
- Association of Chartered Accountants (ACA) – offered by ICAEW (the Institute of Chartered Accountants in England and Wales)
- Chartered Accountants (CA) – offered by ICAS (the Institute of Chartered Accountants in Scotland)
- Chartered Institute of Management Accountants
The tax division is somewhat different to audit and advisory in that it has its own dedicated business school. All courses are run in London, and at the end of a three-year training contract all employees should be qualified as chartered accountants (CAs) and tax advisers.
The course itself is nine months of intense learning once a graduate joins the company. These nine months are spent solely on the course. Further training prior to the final exam is done on-the-job, through mock exams and personal study. The course is unique to KPMG, constituting study in both accountancy and tax. E-learning modules and virtual classrooms are designed to assist with this balance of work and study further down the line.
Graduates on the human resources graduate scheme will study for the Chartered Institute of Personnel and Developing (CIPD) qualification, while those on the marketing scheme have the opportunity to study towards a qualification with the Chartered Institute of Marketing (CIM).
The facilites graduate scheme is somewhat different in that graduates will look to take relevant qualifications as time goes on and they come to specialise. The variety really depends upon the requirements of where you come to specialise, with Masters courses, British Institute of Facilities Management (BIFM) courses, or indeed MBAs in the longer term. KPMG also provides a list of professional memberships that many of their staff have, which should give graduates areas to research and refer to in their interviews:
- British Continuity Insitute (BCI)
- British Institute of Facilities Management (BIFM)
- Chartered Institute of Building Services Engineers (CIBSE)
- Insitute of Occupational Safety and Health (IOSH)
- Project Management Institute (PMI)
- Royal Institute of Chartered Surveyors (RICS)
Further development opportunities
Of particular interest to many graduates will be the Global Opportunities (GO) programme. This is a selection of international placements that could last anywhere between three months and three years, depending upon the level and experience of the employee. As with any graduate scheme, international opportunities are competitive and take some time to achieve (you usually need to have been employed by the firm for at least two years).
KPMG also runs a Smart Development programme, offering 24/7 online learning on themes such as 'resilience' and 'impact'.
We offer career breaks for all employees and have no barriers around a certain amount of time someone needs to be employed before being promoted – it is based on merit.
KPMG graduate recruitment team