Monday, January 5, 2009

career progression

"What can you tell me about the different possible tracks a person would take at the Big 4 in regards to tax vs. audit? Is there a difference in career progression among the two specialties? How about career potential? Workload?"

Loaded question. In terms of career potential, they're both pretty potent. Audit leads you to controller/accounting manager/ VP - accounting positions at companies if you choose to quit. Tax can lead to tax manager positions at various companies/ help them minimize taxes and exploit tax loopholes. It's a pretty important position in many companies...I'm not an expert on tax careers though, so you might want to ask somebody in a tax related position.
In terms of career progression, it's the same as audit...start off as a staff associate...move to senior..manager..snr mgr..partner.
In terms of workload, my friends in the tax department seem to work two busy the fall and in the spring. So I think they work more than in audit, but they are more flexible in that the work can be done from home and there's very little, if any travelling.
Hope this helps, sorry I couldn't provide more information about a career in tax.


Anonymous said...

Thank you so much, your advice is invaluable. I think there exists a huge gap at the undergrad level of what career opportunities exist in your field. Luckily there are blogs like yours that fill the gap. Thanks again.

Anonymous said...

Ok, so I searched the whole blog for any posts on Big 4 vs. small firms. You have some really great posts! I get the vibe that most of the people in public accounting are temporary, i.e. they get poached for corporate level positions. My specific question is this; 1) Do people in firms other than the Big 4 face the same type of head hunting? I am sure it has to do with the individual clients you encounter, but I know you can provide more insight. 2) Are you more likely to make partner in a small firm? 3) Is there a huge pay differential between Big 4 and small firms? Thank you!

술퍼맨 said...

I know both are very stressful..but i think tax guys are in a little bit better situation. cuz they don't need to clients frequently. They don't stick aroung clients' offices.

Kelkel said...

What about more managerial positions than strictly accounting? Is that just personal characteristics and pursuing those opportunities, or would another degree like an MBA help that?

speckles said...

MBA is good for managerial positions out of public accounting.