Navigating a KPMG interview is your final step before working with one of the Big 4 consulting firms. KPMG is headquartered in the Netherlands and is a global network consisting of independent member firms with over 200,000 of global employees.
A “Big 4” firm, KPMG offers tax, audit, and client advisory services – this article will focus on KPMG advisory roles. With such a wide range of services offered and huge headcount, the KPMG interview process is highly structured at the undergrad level, but recruiting practices are flexible by office for experienced hires.
What is the KPMG interview like?
The KPMG interview focuses a great deal on your technical knowledge and fit with the firm. So, expect the KPMG interview questions to focus on those two areas. Many candidates find the interviews to be more informal and collegial in nature vs. interrogational. Because of this, the interview itself can be unpredictable.
This is a challenge for most candidates we work with – they’re okay when asked to size a market or take a technical test. However, many of them aren’t great at having a back-and-forth business conversation with a senior leader. It’s one of the main things we work on with our clients in our 1:1 coaching services.
Behavioral interviews are to be expected at KPMG. It’s hit or miss if you’ll see a full case interview at KPMG, although you should be prepared for an interviewee-led case interview. At a bare minimum, be prepared for market sizing questions.
Work with us to prepare for your interview with KPMG.
You will begin the KPMG interview process with an online assessment/pre-screen. This is followed by a phone or on-campus interview. Then, you can expect 2-3 in-person panel interviews with 2-3 KPMG senior managers for each interview round.
You can expect another possible round of panel interviews with your future manager should you make it past the first set of panel interviews. You may experience a super day filled with multiple interviews. Finally, expect a partner interview in the final stage of the interview process.
Typically, the entire KPMG interview process lasts about a month. If you’re an experienced hire, there will be a quick turnaround time between the time you are invited to interview and the actual first interview. That’s why it’s so important to begin your interview prep ASAP!
How Is the KPMG Interview Unique?
The KPMG interview is more of a social experience. KPMG interview questions have an emphasis on cultural fit and less on strategy. KPMG has invested the least out of its Big 4 brethren in a strategy arm, and it shows in the generalist interview process.
By the time you reach your final interviews, you will be evaluated more for fit and stakeholder management ability. At this stage, the online assessment and market sizing questions will have told KPMG that you can do the job. The remaining question is, “How will you collaborate with KPMG team members and function with KPMG’s clients?”
The “correct” answers to these types of questions are stories! Our team works with hundreds of KPMG candidates per year, helping them ace the interview process. Whether you work with us or not, KPMG interview prep is key!
KPMG Interview Structure
Expect about 50-75% behavioral-based questions and 25-50% case-based. Behavioral/fit questions will usually come first. In each round, you’ll face approximately 10 behavioral questions and then have time to ask questions at the end.
KPMG Interview Prep – What You Need to Do
- Have 15 stories prepared ahead of your KPMG interview. Practice telling the story out loud!
- Practice at least 10 market sizing questions out loud in advance of your interview – preferably with an expert.
- Have 3 questions ready to ask the interviewer at the end of the interview.
- Prepare for a presentation-style group interview – this is where you have to analyze data and develop a deck in an hour or less.
- Prepare to solve a full case just in case. Most likely, it will be a fairly simple profit case with either growth or cost-cutting as the focus. There is a 10% or smaller chance you could get a topical situational interview (i.e., We are handling post-merger integration communication. Who should be included and what should their roles be?).
- Reach out to one to two people at your prospective level at KPMG. They can help you understand what to expect during the interview process. They may also help you network within the organization, and possibly provide a reference for you ahead of your interview.
Next Steps for Interview Prep – How We Can Help You
Now that you understand what to expect in the KPMG interview, don’t underestimate the preparation that is required. At a minimum, you should spend 4 hours preparing for a KMPG interview.
KPMG provides its employees great branding, training, and exit opportunities. Interviewing there is an incredible opportunity – don’t waste it! We are here to help you in your KPMG interview prep. Our expert coaches prepare hundreds of candidates each year for success. Check out our unparalleled interview preparation services!