Vault just released their annual ranking of the 50 best accounting firms to work for. Now the way Vault analyzes this is by surveying over 9,000 professionals in the accounting field. They ask accounting professionals in each of these firms to rank the other firms on a scale of 1 to 10 based on prestige.

The accountants were also asked to rate their own firm based on the following categories:

  • Culture
  • Compensation
  • Benefits
  • Training
  • Work/Life Balance
  • Number of hours worked
  • Diversity

The most surprising part of the survey was that the workplace scores increased significantly this year which means that the largest accounting firms are making investments in this area to retain employees.

Big Four Scores Versus Other Firms

The Big 4 firms score higher in the areas of training and diversity when compared to smaller or mid-size firms.

There were only a couple areas where other firms scored higher than the big 4 accounting firms. Those details are below.

Other Firms Advantage over the Big 4

 Other Firms Advantage over the Big 4

Accounting firms outside of the Big 4 score much better in the area of quality of worklife balance. Now let’s get to the rankings of the top 5 accounting firms to work for based on Vault’s rankings and metrics. 

The best companies to work for as an accountant

Best Companies to Work for As An Accountant

Best Companies to Work for As An Accountant

As you can see from the list above that the usual suspects are there. The Big 4 dominate the listing of the top accounting firms in the world to work for.

The surprising part of the ranking is that KPMG was surpassed by Grant Thornton. It is especially weird because KPMG is still ranked as the number four firm in the prestige rankings. I think what this shows is that Grant Thornton has been making significant investment in the quality of life metrics that Vault measures.

Based on the charts and information above, it appears that accounting firms are trying to improve the quality of life in order to attract and retain top talent.