A few questions please



I started applying a bit late this year and focused on too narrow a geographical area - I managed to get to the 2nd interview stage with 2 of the top 5 firms but then missed out on getting a position

Haven’t really had much luck with the few mid-tiers I tried - and a number of my applications are on hold/deferred due to all the places being filled up

Got one interview coming up with a small regional firm and that will probably be the last one this intake - as september is rapidly approaching

So I was thinking of concentrating on the next intake and applying at places like E&Y and PKF that I haven’t tried yet and try again for some of the others when the wait time is up if need be

Would it be best to get a temp job in the meantime to get some more experience? It would add to my CV but I am worried about time off for interviews etc.

I meet the academic requirements but have very little work experience

Do E&Y/PKF/BDO usually have vacancies with a January startdate?

If whilst applying to them I am doing a temp. job will they take this as a positive? or will the fact that I haven’t gotten a graduate job yet and temping be a bad sign?

Also when re-applying to a firm do you have to go through the whole process again? and what are the chances of securing a position the next time round? (I have heard of people who have gotten into big4 on their 2nd/3rd attempt)

doing aca at a local/regional firm

I have heard that pretty much all firms give similar time off for aca training etc. but I assume large firms can afford to give their staff more time off as they employ more staff - would you say this is true?

once aca qualified - will you have the same career opportunites as say someone who qualified with a top 10 firm?

Has anyone tried this? http://www.icaew.com/index.cfm?route=150948

I am not sure about it - the form appears to still be last years form and the region list isn’t included

Thanks for any advice


I registered for that graduate recruitment scheme but have had no offers so far. I am in a similar situation to you, I graduated but have little experience, I have a 2:2 though so finding a job is even harder for me, any advice?


Taking a temp job while you wait for the next intake won’t hurt your chances. I used the time to go travelling and this furthered my development; both gave me some solid examples of experience in dealing with people and conflicts, to use in the competency based interviews.

Some graduates go straight from university but they’re looking for diversity, not uniformity. If you’re aiming for the big4 and don’t wish to compromise, view it as an opportunity to make yourself a stronger candidate.


Yea which are the best tem agencies?

But will most of my applications be automatically rejected if i get a 2:2?


kkhimji2001 - You need to check by calling [[human resources (HR)|HR]] at the firms you want to apply to. Some firm’s application systems do automatically reject candidates with less than a 2.1. However, many firms do accept candidates with a 2.2… look at our [[list of accounting firms]] to find out.


456789 - Getting a temp job could be a good idea, especially if you don’t have much office experience so far. Companies certainly won’t look down on you for working p/t whilst you make career applications. Getting time off for interviews could be a problem - it might be an idea to find a temp employer that will hire you part-time, but let you work as many over-time hours as you like each week. This would give you a lot of flexibility.

  • Unsure if bdo/EY/pkf have second start dates. You’ll have to call them up.

  • You do usually have to go through the whole application process if you apply a second time (or third time) round.


Don’t worry about the applying more than once. People do it, and they do get in. You might need a different email address each time you apply.

In terms of career opportunities, there’s no doubting that the career opportunities from a [[big 4]] graduate outstrip those of someone much lower down the list, such as [[PKF]], however ultimately a career is what you make of it.

In terms of time off, [[big 4]] firms do not offer any more time off than is necessary- they are driven businesses, so time off really isn’t on the cards when not absolutely required.


Thank you for your responses