Big Four Corporate Finance Offer Need Advice

Hi all,

I know there are other threads on this, but most of them are rather old and didn't have exactly what I was looking for.

I recently received an offer at a Big 4 corporate finance team (i.e. MM IBD). As all of the other threads said, the starting offer is lower than other MM IBD firms, but it was presented as a work hard play hard situation, with a great work-life balance (insane amount of vacation).

I currently work at a boutique bank and am relatively confident I could land another offer at a different MM firm. Although, it might take another 6 months.

So, here are the questions:

1.) Can any one confirm the work-life balance in Big 4 Corp Fin? Do you actually get to take the vacation, or do they just give it to you because it's a company-wide thing?

2.) Is it worth asking for a higher base? I am coming in with a little over a year of full-time experience and a pretty long list of internships.

3.) Can anyone speak to the pay increases as you move up the ranks. I was told I would be eligible for a raise at the end of the year.

4.) What is the typical bonus % range? I was told it is completely discretionary and could be as high as 100% (highly unlikely) but is more likely in the 15 - 50% range depending on performance and level.

Comments (6)

Mar 9, 2017


Jan 31, 2017

Mind if I PM you as well? I also have some specific questions related to the Big4 CF groups in Canada.

Mar 9, 2017

Yup feel free to shoot me a PM

Jan 31, 2017

1) Where are you located (US or Intl?)
2) What are your goals in the short-term: are you looking for highest pay / prestige or a solid gig with work/life balance?
3) Why are you leaving your current gig?

Worked with the Big 4 CF but wasn't part of them. I believe it'll be easier to pivot to MM/BB IBD from your current boutique (unless its tiny) than Big 4, where you're pigeonholed, rightly or wrongly, as an accountant.

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Best Response
Jan 31, 2017

UK perspective here so take with pinch of salt.

1) It's fine. 9-6/7 usually, later on deal crunch time. UK is different but we get 25 days which it's expected you take.

2) Not really, you will be paid within a firm-wide range for your level. 5% increase max. Give it a go but don't expect anything - your internships are fairly irrelevant for comp.

3) Annual pay increases, usually promotion linked. Look for your base to double within 3 years and then double again in another 4-5.

4) No chance of 100%. 15-20% more likely. Definitely influenced heavily by performance.

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Feb 2, 2017
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