Getting to know Big 4 KAP: History and Tips for Joining Big 4 KAP

If you are interested in pursuing a career in finance or consulting, you may want to consider a career with one of the Big 4 KAPs. Big 4 KAPs are the four largest accounting firms in the world. While they offer many of the same accounting and auditing services, each company may be different.

In this article, we explain the Big 4 KAPs, their history and sources of income and discuss the differences between each of them.

What is Big 4 KAP?

Big 4 refers to the four largest accounting and auditing firms in the world. These companies are PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC), Deloitte Touche Tohmatsu (Deloitte), Ernst & Young (E&Y) and Klynveld Peat Marwick Goerdeler (KPMG).

They are a certified public accounting firm (CPA) that handles most audits of US companies with publicly traded stock. Apart from auditing and accounting, these companies also provide the following services:

1. Assurance
2. Management consulting
3. Taxation
4. Actuarial
5. Advisor
6. Legal services
7. Corporate finance

The Big 4 is not an individual company but a group of professional service networks. Each company in the Big 4 is formed by a network of independently owned and managed companies. These companies agree with other members to share the same name, standards and brand of any of the Big 4.

Each of these companies has as an entity that coordinates the activities of the groups that make up the company. KPMG has a Dutch entity coordinating the network, while the other three Big 4 companies have a British coordinating entity. These entities do not own or have control over the company. Their sole purpose is to coordinate.

A company working under the name of one of the 4 major corporations will normally operate in only one country and be governed by the laws and regulations appropriate to that country. For example, KPMG’s London office can only offer its services to organizations in the United Kingdom.

Big Income Source 4

The Big 4’s main sources of income include:

1. Auditing, Assurance dan AERS (Audit and Risk Enterprise Services)
2. Consulting and consulting services
3. Tax service
4. Other professional services such as legal and corporate finance

Auditing is their most profitable service. In 2017, these companies audited 497 of the S&P 500. The S&P 500 is a stock market index that tracks the shares of 500 large US companies. Consulting is another lucrative service offered by the Big 4, which accounts for 40% of the market.

Here’s how the Big 4 annual earnings sheet looks like in 2017:

1. Deloitte made $38.8 billion. This includes $14.4 billion from consulting and consulting services and $14.1 billion from auditing, assurance, and AERS services. $7.4 billion came from taxes and $3.5 billion from other services.
2. PwC generated $37.68 billion. This includes $15.97 billion from auditing, assurance and AERS services, $8.53 billion from consulting and consulting services, and $9.46 billion from taxes.
3. Ernst & Young earned $31.4 billion. This includes $11.63 billion from auditing, assurance and AERS services, $8.53 billion from consulting and advisory, $8.18 billion from taxes and $3.07 billion from other services.
4. KPMG made $26.4 billion. This includes $10.39 billion from AERS audits, assurances and services. $10.18 billion came from consulting and advisory and $5.83 billion from taxes.

In 2018, revenue increased for all four companies. Deloitte made $43.3 billion. PwC made $41.3 billion. Ernest & Young’s revenue was $34.8 billion and KPMG’s was $28.96 billion.

How Does Deloitte Consulting Work?

Deloitte’s consulting services focus on three main areas. This is:

1. Strategy and operations. In this type of consulting service, consultants work with senior executives to come up with strategies and solve complex problems.

2. Human Capital. In this type of consulting service, consultants conduct research, work with analytics, and provide industry consulting to help clients build and run their business operations.

3. Technology. For this service, consultants work with clients to help them adapt to their rapidly growing business. Consultants can also help increase company productivity and develop strategies to create smoother business operations.

How Does PwC Consulting Work?

PwC is a leader in the global consulting market. Their consulting services focus on three main areas: consulting, dealing and forensics. Its services include:

1. Asset management
2. Hospitality dan leisure
3. Retail and consumer products
4. Transportation and logistics
5. Cyber ​​security
6. Financial services
7. Automotive
8. Aerospace and defense
9. Engineering and construction
10. Health
11. Pharmacy and life sciences
12. Banking and capital market
13. Industrial products
14. Insurance
15. Retail and consumer products
16. Technology, media and communication

How Do Ernst & Young Consultants Work?

In 2014, Ernest & Young partnered with Parthenon, a strategy-based company. Together, the two firms offer strategy-based consulting services to Ernest & Young’s clients worldwide. These consulting services include:

1. Customer experience and engagement
2. Strategy consulting services
3. Supply chain and operations
4. Risk transformation
5. IoT consulting service
6. Analytical consulting service
7. Financial services
8. Blockchain consulting services
9. Program management consulting services

How Does KPMG Consulting Work?

The smallest of the Big 4, KPMG offers the following consulting services:

1. Fraud risk management
2. Investigation service
3. Big project advisor
4. Enforcement and compliance with regulations
5. Contract compliance service
6. Forensic technology services
7. Anti-money laundering and trade sanctions services
8. Dispute consulting service
9. Management consulting
10. Risk consultation
11. Deal suggestion

How to Become a Consultant in Big 4 KAP?

Becoming a consultant with one of the big 4 companies can be a challenging process. To become a consultant, it is recommended that you start the application process while you are a junior or senior in college. You should also have the following:

1. high GPA
2. Graduated from a reputable university
3. Impressive interviewing skills

When you consider a career with one of the big 4, you may find that one company is a better fit for you than another.

Here are some qualities about each company that can help you decide which one is right for you:

1. Deloitte

Deloitte usually targets MBA graduates, undergraduates (not necessarily from reputable schools) and internship programs. Deloitte values ​​ethics, codes of conduct and integrity and looks for these qualities in the people they employ.

This company has been voted “the best place to start a career”. The company has also been ranked as “the most in-demand employer” and as one of the “five most attractive places to work”.

Working at Deloitte means you have more opportunities to work with Fortune 500 companies in finance or any other well-known company in the world.

2. PwC

PwC helps students prepare for their careers by offering part-time internships that complement their studies. During this internship, interns participate in meetings with clients and experts in their field, enabling them to absorb as much information as possible while they are still learning.

Like the other Big 4 KAPs, PwC is a great company to start your career with and strengthen your skills in any of the company’s practice areas.

3. Ernest & Young

Ernest & Young remains at the top of award lists such as Best Place to Work, Most Diverse Company, Where Women Want to Work, Best Place to Launch a Career, and more.

The company targets two main candidates: bachelor’s and master’s graduates with less than three years of experience. Ernest & Young offers these students an associate position where they receive hands-on training and placement in their chosen field. The company values ​​continuous social impact, collaboration and career growth for employees.


KPMG’s main focus is on analytical and technical work. This is a great company to work for if you want to cultivate a deep understanding of Fortune 500 business operations.

Like other big 4 companies, KPMG targets undergraduate and postgraduate students. It also offers Continuing Professional Education (CPE) to its employees.


That is a complete discussion of the four largest public accounting firms in the world that are included in the ranks of The Big Four. Their reputations that have been built for decades have made these KAPs very popular in the world.

Working in the big 4 KAP is the dream of many people, especially those who have a bachelor’s degree in accounting or other finance and management study programs.

If you are interested in a career in the big 4 KAPs, practice your techniques in analyzing, managing finances and making the best decisions based on your data.

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