By Emmanuel Nduka
Global accounting firm – KPMG, has told partners in its US arm that their gardening leave Ppay will be cut by 50% if they leave for a rival firm.
According to KPMG, the move is the latest effort to stymie a poaching war among the Big Four firms.
KPMG’s decision stands out among its other three rivals – EY, Deloitte and PwC – and would likely force firms nabbing talent to scramble for more cash to top up payments of staff they’re luring away.
The latest move was communicated from Sandy Torchia, the firm’s vice-chair for talent and culture, in an email sent in late July, sources familiar with the matter told the Financial Times.
The US has seen an increase in financial penalties for staff who quit for rivals across the Big Four, as competition for talent has escalated, the FT reported.
According to a spokesperson for the firm, the policy “more closely aligns with industry practice, maintains partners’ full long-term compensation plan, and compensates them in the short term, recognising they are no longer working full-time”, the FT reported.
Earlier this year, the firm axed around 700 US staff, which the firm then said was to “better align our workforce with current and anticipated demand in the market”.
The firm became the first among the Big Four to make staff cuts amid rising inflation and the ongoing market slump. KPMG said then that it continued to have “more people than needed” to meet demand, amid “prolonged uncertainty affecting certain parts” of its advisory business.
The firm also said it was reducing expenses and prioritising investments in areas in which it continues to be confident.