AMA- Big 4 Audit to MM IB

Love Audit Money's picture
Rank: Baboon | 139

Hi all,

Recently moved from Big 4 Audit to a top MM IB (Blair, Jeff, Baird, HL) after 1.5 years in Audit. Willing to answer any questions about the process I used to make the transition, opinions on Big 4 Audit/TAS, corporate finance/ development jobs (I interviewed for a few during my process), the type of firms I reached out to/ recruitment process, and how I prepared for the interviews. Shout out to @rp-53 for doing one of these a little while back and being a great help during my process.

To give a little color about me I went to a semi-target for undergrad and started in the Big 4 after getting my Macc. I also have my CPA and I have passed the CFA level 1. I could go into to further details about my background upon request.

Happy to field any questions.

Comments (53)

Nov 22, 2016

Pretty standard question I admit, but any tip on how to make the move from TAS to MM IB doable?
Thanks for the thread

Best Response
Nov 22, 2016

One factor would be which part of TAS you are in. If its transaction diligence then you would basically be approaching it from the same perspective as someone from audit, albeit your experience makes a better transition story and will probably get picked for interview at boutiques at a decent clip. The hurdle you will be trying to jump, as it is with audit, is the modeling skills. I believe I got past this due to the CFA level 1 and a significant amount of modeling practice (Breaking into Wall Street, etc).

If you are in valuations, then the modeling is not an issue. The hurdle there will be proving that you are personable enough to be in front of a client and that you can handle the hours.

In terms of making the move in general I would recommend choosing a 4 month window to start your process. Day 1 you need to start networking hard, 5 emails a day, five days a week. Schedule phone calls during the day before work and around lunch were you can chat. Congruent to the networking should be modeling practice, I would recommend the BIWS interview guide and the Rosenbaum investment banking book(there are free online versions floating around if you look around WSO), but both of those will run you around $100 in totality. Small investment to feel prepared for these interviews. Apply to all opportunities on Indeed/Linkedin/online websites. That along with the networking should draw up some interviews within that time period. The networking interviews are key as they will help you perfect your pitch so its sounds natural by the time you are talking to bankers during the fit interview. Honestly, I don't think that a switch from TAS to a boutique or a MM should be a huge leap. But breaking in to IB from anywhere takes a decent amount of leg work. Also don't feel beaten down in the first two months of your window, I had gotten 2 super days at that point (1 Fig Boutique, 1 Corp Dev at Tech firm) and in both cases someone with prior IB experience was chosen. Any super day will make you better for the next one.

Hope that answer helps. Let me know if you have anymore glad to help.

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Nov 22, 2016

did you audit financial services firms? or did you "specialize", per say, in a different sector (manufacturing, etc.). if you did financial services, did you attempt to network with those companies? Definitely trying to make a move similar to you. Thanks for doing this, don't see much accounting on here.

Nov 22, 2016

Thanks for the question.

I don't want to give to much away about myself, but I did serve Financial Services companies as one of the two industries I worked on. To be honest I didn't really use any of the networks from this industry from a audit perspective. I will say however if you are looking FIG position this does help you get past the why FIG question and I personally believe that it helped me get to the superdays of the two FIG firms I interviewed with.

I hope this answered your question. Feel free to ask any more questions here or PM if you have something specific.

Nov 22, 2016

I know of only one other person who was able to make the move directly from Big Four accounting (he was in tax, though) to IB without first moving to TAS. The move that you accomplished is very impressive. Congratulations.

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Nov 22, 2016

Thanks, means a lot coming from someone in the running for poster of the year. Honestly, hearing that it was going to be difficult lit a fire under me to work even harder to make it happen.

Nov 22, 2016

How did you make it happen? Did you apply online and hope for the best? Did you network? Did you get any pushback for coming from accounting?

Nov 22, 2016

Hey, congrats and thanks for doing this! I graduated from college last year and I'm currently a management consultant at a Big 4 with mostly risk and operational consulting experience. Unfortunately, I don't think that my current role has anything to do with IB. I was wondering how you went about finding roles to apply to given that most of the IB analyst roles seem to be oriented towards college students? Also, did you recruit over the summer when banks start posting IB roles or did you find those roles purely through networking? Also, in terms of networking, how did you maintain the relationships with the people that you have networked with and how did you make an ask for an interview?

Thanks!

Nov 22, 2016

Honestly networking will be your best weapon, but I would be constantly looking on Indeed/LinkedIn/ websites for opportunities. Additionally, if you recruiter reached out to you with a IB role, then that recruiter will probably be a good resource, I had one that got me a interview and a superday. But I would say that's the exception not the rule . I started in August, I honestly think that opportunities open up all year round. I would should for fall or spring as it seems to be a time when people have left the firm/ opportunities open up. That could be pretty biased based on what I have heard however. I follow up with emails to maintain relationships. If I really hit it off with someone I would probably schedule another call/ have them look at my resume and get their opinion.

Hope that answered your questions.

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Nov 22, 2016

Thanks for the response!

Nov 22, 2016

What would you say your success rate was with receiving interviews after applying to IB analyst roles on indeed and linkedin? Did you notice a difference between how far you advanced in the process vs. an interview won by networking?

Nov 22, 2016

I would say that my success rate with applications on linkedin and indeed were probably around 3-5%. My effort on that front for 4 months resulted in 5 fit interviews, 3 superdays, and 2 offers (DCM shop at a regional bank and the top MM offer that I accepted). I think the big difference for me came to making sure I seized any opportunity that I got, as I knew they were going be limited. In terms of my networking efforts I had the opportunity to interview at 5 places (two top MM, FIG Boutique, Generalist Boutique, Leveraged Fin at a large regional). I got the opportunity to do 3 superdays. I ended up canceling the lev fin superday as I accepted my current role. So if you add up the numbers the results look pretty identical in terms of how far I got in the process depending on the source. I will say that the fit interviews for the ones I networked into were considerable easier and I seemed to get invited to the superdays rather quickly in comparison to the other avenues. I will also note that the networking superdays came before the indeed/website sourced ones, so my polish wasn't nearly at the level as it was for the superdays that I received offers from.

Thanks for the question.

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Nov 22, 2016

Thanks for your awesome post. Could you talk a little more about how your B4 experienced helped prepare for the role? What kind of skills/projects worked on made you stand out during your interviews?

Also, how similar/different are the 2 roles (one you are now vs your B4 position, based on salary/hours/quality of work? I know IB obviously pays more but it is significantly more hours - or am I wrong?

Thanks!

Nov 22, 2016

In terms of Big 4 skills that were transferable in my transition basically fell into two camps:
1) Project management/hours- I learned to deal with the stress on managing up and down during busy season. Additionally, dealing with various personalities and still managing to succeed in team environments.
2) Client skills- Emphasis the relationships you built with clients and how you kept them happy while getting the info/support you needed

In terms of hours- I actually don't start fully for another week so I could only tell you offhand from what I heard fom analysts/ associates I know. But basically I would expect 9am 9pm being my normal leave time and about 5-10 hours of weekend work. Of course its IB so I expect to be living at the whim of the senior bankers, so I am sure I will have my share of all nighters. I would say have I averaged about 50 hours for 7 months of the year and 60-70 hours for about 5 months in the Big 4. I would actually say my hours were about 5 hours a week higher then a lot of my peers, some clients just suck.

In terms of comp- I would expect my all in comp to be between 2.5-3.0x of what I made in the Big 4. At least that's what it has been in my firm in the prior years. It also helps that I am starting as a analyst 2, but that means that I expect the first six months here to be very tough on me and I am expected to hit the ground sprinting with bayonets fixed.

Hope that answered your question. Let me know if you have any others.

Jan 31, 2018

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Nov 22, 2016

Thanks for doing this. For context, I'm currently in my second year in Big four financial due diligence. I went the CPA and MAcc route as well and have taken modeling courses to hone those skills. I also frequently dissect target and client operating and lbo models as part of our work, so I'm familiar with best/common practices.

A few questions:

How did you explain why you didn't go IB from the start during networking/the fit portion of the interview?

Did you express an interest in a specific industry/product while networking to show you're focused? Or cast a wide net? Unsure what the best path is here.

Did you apply for on-campus positions and start as a new 1st year, or did you apply for experienced positions, and if so, what level are you considered given your prior experience in audit?

Do you mind elaborating on how you framed your cold networking emails? Did you expressly ask for their help obtaining and prepping for interviews?

Any specific tips for who / how to reach out to, or any recruiting shops you specifically recommend (or don't)?

Thanks in advance!

Nov 22, 2016

Thanks for the question.

1) I was a liberal arts major in undergrad, so I basically stated that I didn't know what I wanted to do when I graduated, but that I liked analyzing companies financial statements, so accounting served as a natural fit initially. From there I explained why I wanted to be in IB and how I developed my skillset.

2) I did both depending my market, small specialized boutiques got the why FIG/Healthcare pitch. All others got a more general pitch focusing on the breadth of my background of experiences.

3) I applied to both, but to be honest I found more success with experienced positions. I would still apply to all the opportunities you see, but networking should go hand in hand with the job apps.

4) I would ask if you could chat as I was looking to make a transition. From there once I got on a call I would feel it out, if it was going well I would ask if there were opportunities at his firm. If it was just going ok I would as for referrals and maybe ask about opportunities in my follow-up email next week. I treated this kind of like going on a date right, if its going really well might as well roll the dice and ask to take her home. Otherwise ask for a second date and see if you can woo her then.

5) Network hard. Like really go for it, it is also a great learning experience. I never realized how valuable a network could be until this process.

Feel free to ask more questions or PM.

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Nov 22, 2016

Thanks for the quick reply!

Following up on #4 - Makes a lot of sense - I like the date analogy. Where I'm still unclear though is how to kick off these conversations. Do I ask general bank/industry/group questions - I want to sound informed about what I'm asking to sign up for, and obviously don't want to ask anything that could be answered through a simple google search or read of the website. I hesitate to just ask specific questions tailored to that person's experience though, since if it's a cold call, it's obviously not that I reached out because I'm genuinely interested in this strangers choices.

Also, like you said, I don't want to begin by asking for advice on how to position myself and break in until I get a feel for the conversation - but I'm curious what your perspective here is. (Two conflicting theories on getting people's help 1) Ask questions about the other person so they'll like you 2) People naturally want to be helpful, so just ask for it)

I had this process down recruiting on-campus since the dynamics were different, where I was starting fresh and was still in a position where I could be figuring things out, which made asking these questions easier. Now that I'm an experienced hire, I'm having a difficult time coming up with a strategy to balance the above.

Nov 22, 2016

If you had to choose between Transaction Services (mainly due diligence - QER reports) and Valuations as a stepping stone from Audit -> TS/Val -> MM IB which one would you choose?

How big of a factor was the types of industries/size of clients you worked with? If you worked with smaller non-public clients do you think you would've been dinged?

Thanks very much for doing this. Haven't seen an audit to MM AMA before so this is really helpful!

Nov 22, 2016

I would choose B-val as it would probably give you the most rounded skill set as you have a good amount of diligence skills from audit. The downside of course is that you wouldn't get and interaction with bankers, but from what I here and see that seems pretty limited at the lower levels of TAS diligence. That's just one mans opinion.

Industry can help if you are going into one of the seemingly more specialized industries that seem to have a lot of boutiques in the space FIG/Healthcare. Otherwise I don't see it having to much of a impact. I think having some public company work does matter regardless of size, but again I don't think this is very significant. I did work on 1 fortune 500 client and a billion dollar private business, I cant quantify the impact on recruiting this had, but people always asked what areas I worked on at the fortune 500.

I decided to post since this seemed pretty rare. Another poster about 2 months ago had a similar AMA, but he went to a CRA in between. I am super grateful for the opportunity I have been given. TBH I thought I was going to end up at boutique in the FIG/General space. Ending up where I did made me very grateful to everyone that helped me in the process.

Sorry if that wasn't the most helpful. I would be happy to answer more questions.

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Nov 22, 2016

Thanks for the answers. I love hearing stories like yours for 2 reasons:
1) Gives me a little hope (currently in audit myself)
2) Nice to see a fellow monkey make it after grinding it out.

SB'd and good luck with the job

Nov 22, 2016

Thanks so much for doing the AMA! Wondering now that you have gone through the process... what would you have done differently?
- Targeted certain coverage groups?
- Applied to and networked with BB groups anyway?

Also is there a time period to apply / network throughout the year like 3Q, or just after New Years?

Love Audit Money thanks for giving us hope!! Congrats again on the offer!

Nov 22, 2016

Hey I will do the best I can to address your questions:

1) I would have started earlier in the year, honestly if I would have started in June instead of August I feel like I would have had a job by August. But I am happy how it all played out so no complaints. Also I would just network even harder, Once I started getting super days I eased back to about 15 emails a week/ 3 calls from the 30 emails/8 calls I was at before. Don't be like me and ease up. Once you get an offer sure, but I feel like I had to jump back on it after two weeks of laying low and not getting an offer after two super days. If I would have stayed on it full force I probably would have gained another super day in that gap period.
2) Honestly I cast a pretty wide net, but I did focus on FIG groups initially as I saw pretty much immediate success with getting interviews (got a super day within two weeks for my process, didn't get a offer though as I wasn't prepared enough) But after that I realized that I needed to find a way in anyway possible and pretty much applied to all IB, corp dev, and leveraged finance opportunities that came my way. In then end I found a excellent team at a top MM bank that had space for me. It turned out that it was my top choice group at that bank as well. So it all worked out. But if it would have been Healthcare, FIG or Transportation I still would have taken the offer. I feel like except for some rarities (RX comes to mind) that Bank trumps the team in terms of a opportunity. I honestly didn't find any traction at the Boutiques that dominate their particular sector, I feel like the hiring at these are pretty slim and they are just popular enough to attract talent that they don't need the guy hustling to fill their ranks.
3) I networked pretty hard in the BB space initially, and had some fantastic networking events with them. But there is such a focus on college hiring and returning SAs that the only advice I was given was to wait to FT recruitment for Analyst 1 positions in the next year. That was about 6 months off in that stage of my process so I basically saw the writing on the wall and moved on to targeting other banks. In retrospect, some of the BBs have Leveraged fin groups and MM IB groups that do seem to have lateral positions occasionally pop up. Had a HireVue for one and never heard back, even with a couple of contacts in the bank. The one thing I would probably have target were the EBs (Lazard, Moelis etc.) a little harder, my school has a decent contingent of bankers in in a couple of the EBs and I kind of of thought my background would keep me out of the running. But I also thought I didn't have a shot at a Top MM really so maybe I undersold myself.

4) In terms of timing I started in August, I really didn't think about when was the best time when I started, I feel like anytime is fine when it comes to non-elite Boutiques, MM and the top MM. You just got to hustle hard.

Feel free to ask anymore questions.

Nov 23, 2016

Wow I really appreciate the insightful and detailed response here. You changed my mindset on how to approach this process.. I was told to target the coverage group that correlates with my current industry but I will now network with breadth more aggressively.

Looking at your response below, I am also in a semi-major banking city that isn't NYC, so thanks for that insight as well.

Best of luck with everything. Thanks again for taking the time!

Nov 27, 2016

Thanks for all you've shared!

In your experience, for the BBs were you being told that first-year analyst recruiting cycles were starting in Q1 '17?

Nov 22, 2016

What city did you move in? I know at the bank I summered at, it seemed laterals from accounting were already situated in the city where they ended up starting in IB.

Nov 22, 2016

I am in one of the big IB cities that isn't NY. I don't want to disclose to much, but it seems to me that based on the people i reached out to its possible in any of the major cities. Smaller cities might be easier since you would be competing with less talented candidates.

Nov 26, 2016

Thanks in your experience were you able to gain headway as far as networking in cities outside of the city you were working in as an auditor?

Nov 23, 2016

Hi All,

Love Audit Monkey, thanks for sharing. I've been creeping on these forums for the last couple of years and thought I'd chime in with my story to reiterate your point that this transition is more than possible if one handles the process in the right way. I went through almost an identical process to the one you've described, and I come from the same background. I went from a semi-target school where I had stayed to complete my MSA to Big 4 audit. As my two year mark was approaching, I began aggressively networking and applying to boutique and middle-market banking roles and was able to secure an offer two weeks ago at a middle-market shop in a major non-NYC city. I don't want to hijack the thread, but I will piggyback off of your post to provide a framework for beginning the process. Here are some random thoughts:

I started the networking process back in June but my efforts were super half assed and inconsistent, and I didn't really figure out that I needed to be constantly sending emails and taking phone calls to be efficient and effective. I started really diving into the process in September. For people trying to make the jump from Big 4, I would recommend looking at the process as a 6 month ordeal where you're gonna be focusing on networking your ass off and getting your resume in as many people's hands as possible and taking as many interviews as you can manage. Expect to fail. And learn to love it. You really learn so much when you fail. I don't take rejection well at all, but by the end of this process I was really good at accepting rejection. It makes you smarter and it forces you to address your weaknesses. It got to the point where I could basically laugh it off when I'd fuck up in an interview. You also eventually reach a limit where they can't ask you many questions that you haven't heard before. So embrace the failures because they'll happen, and they're really helpful in perfecting your interview skills and the way you frame yourself and your experiences.

When I began to network, I used my alumni directory and my network of friends for initial leads, and then progressed to checking all online job boards (via email listing for many) and target firms' websites daily. When I'd apply online/resume drop on LinkedIn,etc, I'd always cross reference the firm with alumni from my school on LinkedIn and then reach out to them via email addresses I obtained from the alumni directory. I'd copy/paste a dynamite networking email that was succinct, polite and direct to these people and would get a response rate of about 30%. I'd follow up with ones who didn't respond a couple of weeks later or find someone else at the firm. This step is crucial obviously because all of these openings receive thousands of applications, so you need someone on the other side to push your resume through (and then you put them as a referral on your application, which I think for some firms might be a simple way of screening for people who actually took the time to network with employees within the firm).

In each email I'd say something (again basically copy pasted for most of them with a few tweaks obv) that hit these points:

  • Introductory sentence that states where you obtained his/her contact info and that you're reaching out to him regarding his experience with ______. (Include where you got their info from whether its directory, friends, website, LinkedIn BC otherwise it can be a little creepy. Don't include your name when you're introducing yourself. It's awkward, and your email address contains this info. You also have a signature at the bottom).
  • Background included where you went to school (and possibly what your major was), where you currently work, and that you're currently trying to lateral into an investment banking analyst role. I also tended to add a second sentence after this that said that I've been applying to/interviewing for these roles over the past couple of months because it seemed like a lot of these firms liked to know that I've already had interviews and are serious about this and not wasting their time. Obviously only say this if you feel prepared for interviews/phone screens (which intro phone calls generally become to some degree) because it could backfire if you admit this and then fuck up a simple DCF question or can't rattle off a well oiled story to answer the classic "why banking?" screener.
  • In a second paragraph (mind you each paragraph is only 2-3 sentences max I simply space it this way because it looks neater) I would say something like "I'd love the opportunity to speak with you over the phone if you have any availability in the next couple of weeks in order to discuss your experience at ______ and any current opportunities there may be within your firm. I appreciate your time and look forward to speaking with you. I've attached my resume for your reference.

Short and sweet is key here. Bankers are busy and you don't want to be assuming and send them some long passionate email about your unique background because (1) they don't know you and thus don't care, (2) they won't read it, and (3) they'll respect that you're mature enough to get down to business and be direct while also maintaining proper etiquette. It also just comes across like you've been at this a while and know what you're doing. This email template was one I'd send if I hadn't seen/applied to a posting at their firm yet. If I've seen an opening on the website or indeed or whatever I'd add something after the first sentence that mentioned that I recently saw an opening on their website or submitted an application if I'd already done that.

When they responded with some availability time slots for a call, I would take the earliest possible time in order to get the ball rolling...because the sooner the better. Make sure you're interview ready because if the firm is currently looking for laterals/off-cycle hiring then it will likely turn into a bit of a phone screen for a minute after you've given your story and heard their background etc. Networking is obviously everything in this process, and it's important to cast a wide net quickly. I say quickly because the process is much smoother and effective if you're having these calls every day with people and beginning multiple processes at once. You'll be able to learn from your mistakes more quickly, and you will make plenty of mistakes.

It's ok if the firm isn't hiring; you should still try to get your name/resume into the hiring manager/internal recruiter's hands, so that they hit you up next time they have openings. Keep lines of communication open. It's a bit cliched, but you really do learn something from every email/phone call/interview and it's important to not get down at yourself if you mess up. It takes a fair number of tries to successfully pull a jump like this off. I had about 15 first round phone interviews and made it to about 6 super days before I got my offer, and in most of the cases of rejection I could have done better and things could have gone differently. Don't reply "what ifs". It sucks to get rejected but you actually get good at it, and the more interviews you have the quicker you're able to analyze your performance and note the things that need improvement.

Follow up all calls with a short 3 sentence thank you email, reiterating that you appreciate them reaching out to the recruiter on your behalf or passing along your resume or whatever you are really looking to gain. Send the email at the end of the day of the call, sometime after 5.

This entire process starts to feel like cake after a few weeks when you've got your system down. Everyone is different and will be comfortable handling different situations in different ways. The most important thing is to carpet bomb emails (don't make it too obvious that that's your strategy) and network network network. The more phone calls you have with bankers the more interviews you will get. Period. So your goal should be to get phone calls, and this all starts with a well-oiled email. Anyway, that's how I approached the process which sounds similar to your approach. I'll probably start my own thread soon to add some other key things I learned through my process that I wish I'd known from the start. Sorry for the winded post! To everyone asking themselves if it's really possible, the answer is definitely yes. You just have to want it. I think that a reason that this particular lateral transition isn't more common is that most people in audit/acct aren't the type of people to believe in themselves enough to think it's possible or to really go out there and put themselves at risk of failing. Fail often and fail hard, and success will follow. If you want it you'll make it happen.

Peace, and good luck to those trying to make the jump.

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Nov 23, 2016

Taylor,

I agree with a lot of your points above. I most certainly failed in my early super days and interviews. It worked out in my favor as the bank I ended up at is significantly better then the first bank I had a super day at, so failure really is a blessing in this process. TBH I am curious what city you in, as I am thinking we might be in the same one. Shoot me PM as I have this weird inky that we might be going to the same firm as I know mine was looking to add a couple lateral analysts in a couple non-NY cities.

Nov 23, 2016

Hi, thank you for doing the AMA. Could you maybe go over the Linkedin networking you did in order to land one of the superdays you had. At what time did you share that you are looking for a job at the targeted person's firm? Do you mention it within the linkedin message you send to the alumni or later in a phone call?

Nov 23, 2016

My LinkedIn strategy is as follow:

1) Reachout to some alumni and formed Big 4 alumni in the IB group at a particular bank ( I am using the bank I received a DCM offer from as a example here. This message would basically introduce my self, state my attentions to move into IB, and ask if they could hop on a call and see how they made the transition.
2) From here I would make the call around lunch, early in the morning, or around 7. My clients are pretty rough so it was hard for me to find time for this, but if you make it a priority then it is possible. During the call I might ask about positions if it was going well. You can see my comments about feeling it out like a date above, but that's what it pretty much is. I also try to shoot the breeze about non banking stuff near the end of the call, I think it made people more respective to my follow emails and gave me a fact about them (sports team, college, holiday plans) to include in the follow up email.
3) From there I made the follow up email and I asked if he could send my email to the HR group if there were open positions, I included my resume.
4)5 days latter he follow-up up and said he passed it on and he talked with the hiring manager (the person I networked with was a Analyst 3 being promoted to associate so it seemed he was well liked). He went a little bit above and beyond my other experiences and he confirmed with them that they were going to call me. Speaking of which I need to send this guy another email thanking him outside of the thank you for the interview email,
5) From there I received a call from a VP, it was about 75% fit a couple of very low hanging debt questions ( what is the coupon rate, difference between investment and junk, tell me about something that has happened in the Debt markets that interested you). The interview went well (I was pretty polished at this point so I could tell it went well and during my next steps question she mentioned that they would definitely bring me out for a super day.
6) In the next week I received two additional phone call interviews (two associates) these were 100% fit and gave me a chance to meet the team. These went well and If I hadn't got my M&A team job I would have loved to join this team.
7) During the same week I received those calls I received a invite to the superday. I had to take a personal day as it was from 11-1230. Met with a MD, a 2 VPs. I received only market related technical (tell me about current events, tell me a metric you would use during debt analysis, etc.) I think having done the CFA level 1 eliminated some of these technical as they assumed I passed the exam and could tell you how to value a bond/calculate the return.
8) I received an offer about 4 days latter with a call from the MD, they gave me two weeks to decided and I told him I had two more superdays, only ended up attending 1, and I would have my decision in the next week. In the end this was a respectable group at medium sized regional bank, and although the people and pay were good (80k base 25% bonus), I couldn't pass up the opportunity to work at my top choice firm when I got offered.

Hope that gives you some color on the process. Let me know if you have another question.

Nov 24, 2016

Hey Op, great post and gratz! Just a quick question, I just started with one of the big 4 in their audit practice and do CPA help during your recruiting process? I am in a dilemma of studying for my CPA and focusing on recruiting for IB, would appreciate some thoughts, thanks

Nov 26, 2016

After some thought I would say two major things:

1) If you have less then a year of experience then you are gonna be competing for entry level IB jobs and not experience hire positions. So where you went to college and the network you have will be extremely important if you got about switching before the one year mark.

2) This CPA exam though not necessary in any form for IB does give you some security in your hiring process and could open exit ops/ career security down the road. If I want to move into Corp Fin down the road I see having my CPA and Big 4 experience with the IB work as a pretty substantial asset to a company. It would also separate your self from the competition making this move and probably allow you into a Fin manager role earlier then you could at the Big 4/win out over pure CPAs and probably work at a fortune 100 company (more $$).

Those are just some thoughts. Hope that helps.

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Nov 26, 2016

Congrats on the move! I myself started off in a Big Four audit team as well, then did some time in a modelling team and then went into IB. So you did the enhanced version of what I did.

Nov 28, 2016

aside from jumping out of Tax @ big 4, any insight on how to make switch, is it possible in tax role?

Dec 1, 2016

Thanks for the help! I am in the same boat as you - well sort of. Big 4 audit with 2 years of experience and did my CFA 1 as well. Will find out my CPA results next week. I read the whole thread and you emphasized a lot on networking.

Q1. How did you generate networking leads? I mean other then the obvious linkedin and leveraging your alumni network, was there anything else you would recommend when generating leads to reach out (based on your experience)? Thank you in advance,

Dec 1, 2016

Thanks for the help! I am in the same boat as you - well sort of. Big 4 audit with 2 years of experience and did my CFA 1 as well. Will find out my CPA results next week. I read the whole thread and you emphasized a lot on networking.

Q1. How did you generate networking leads? I mean other then the obvious linkedin and leveraging your alumni network, was there anything else you would recommend when generating leads to reach out (based on your experience)? Thank you in advance,

Dec 1, 2016

Thanks for the help! I am in the same boat as you - well sort of. Big 4 audit with 2 years of experience and did my CFA 1 as well. Will find out my CPA results next week. I read the whole thread and you emphasized a lot on networking.

Q1. How did you generate networking leads? I mean other then the obvious linkedin and leveraging your alumni network, was there anything else you would recommend when generating leads to reach out (based on your experience)? Thank you in advance,

Dec 2, 2016
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Dec 2, 2016
Dec 5, 2016