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Big four accounting firm expat compensation

Discuss about getting a well paid job or career advancement. Ask about salaries, expat packages, CPF & taxes for expatriate.

bro75
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Postby bro75 » Thu, 14 Mar 2013 9:18 am

caliexpat wrote:I was going to post this on one of the other forums, but since we seem to be on the topic, I'm actually looking to get as cheap accommodations as possible. I'm not looking for anything fancy or that includes facilities, etc.

The most important factors for me are close to work (in commute time, so close to subway would be fine), pricing, and that it's in moderately good condition (i.e., not falling apart and clean). I will be working in the Tanjong Pagar area in the Central Business District. I am looking to just rent a room in an HDB, and am looking to spend less than S$2k in rent per month. Would this be possible?

Also, would anyone happen to have any suggestions as to good general areas to start looking, just so I might narrow down my search to a few targetted areas?

Thanks!


For less than 2K, you can get a master bedroom (with attached bathroom) HDB room in a central area or possibly a whole 2 bedroom hdb in a non-central area.

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imhuishan
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Postby imhuishan » Mon, 18 Mar 2013 1:47 pm

hi caliexpat,

I understand, in general, a senior position with a Big 4 fetches between $4,500 to $5,400 (certainly not a wild guess nor "should be"). Therefore your pay appears reasonable.

cheers.
Let's go LOHAS - do good, feel good and look good!

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Postby caliexpat » Mon, 25 Mar 2013 10:05 pm

Hi imshuishan,

Great, thanks!

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Postby Hidy Ho » Thu, 28 Mar 2013 9:20 am

Anthony249 wrote:Caliexpat

A hong kong expat I know in the position you mentioned makes S$9k per month. Also in the Big 4 and has been with the company for nearly a decade (was initially in the HK branch). Typical hours are 12 hours a day on weekdays and usually 8 hours of additional work (both at home or at the office) over the weekend.


Back in my days "senior" auditor meant someone with 3 to 5 yr experience.

If a person has close to 10 yr experience, that person should be close to senior manager/managing director level ...

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Postby caliexpat » Thu, 28 Mar 2013 2:56 pm

Hidy Ho wrote:
Back in my days "senior" auditor meant someone with 3 to 5 yr experience.

If a person has close to 10 yr experience, that person should be close to senior manager/managing director level ...


That is correct, and things are no different today than they were in your days. I had a few career set backs, due to some other career goals that I had pursued that ended up not panning out. It set me back a few years unfortunately, but I had gained some valuable life experiences that I otherwise would not have gotten. Hence, I will probably be a senior for at least another year before promotion to manager next year.

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Big 4 jobs

Postby ringo100100 » Mon, 01 Apr 2013 4:52 pm

I made a similar move from the UK about 8 years ago. I took a 35% pay cut to become an Assistant Manager with KPMG. Salary was $5,000, but I also got paid my CPF ($500 per month at the time) as a cash payment, which was a nice surprise. At the time there was also a 2-4 month bonus (not sure now).

Hours were really horrible (60+ per week), but it was a great experience and I made lots of friends. I did it for 2 years then went into IA for an MNC. You can expect a pay rise of about 25%-30%. Hours are also a lot better, together with bonuses and shares. I felt that as soon as I knew that I didn't want to become a Partner, I would leave.

Now several years on it was a great decision to take the pay cut and leave the UK. A booming Asia, with a very favourable FX movement and low taxes, mean I am earning much more than if id stayed in the UK.

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Re: Big 4

Postby ChengTeng » Sun, 14 Apr 2013 1:27 pm

minnie30 wrote:Hi Caliexpat,

So glad I found your post. I moved here with my husband for his job and can hopefully send some good advice your way. He also works for one of the Big 4 and I will say off the bat, you should definitely NOT be getting a pay cut for coming out here. Singapore is SO EXPENSIVE!! His expat package gave us a little more than what he was making in the US and even with that, we aren't "living large" here like many expats do. We can't afford a housekeeper, a car, fine dining, and forget about going to the bars all the time because a cocktail here costs around $15-20.

I don't know what is "typical" for the Big 4 or what other companies do, but if you are seriously interested in moving here, I would negotiate for a MUCH higher salary. Hopefully they will cover your rent expense. We live in a 700sqft 1 bedroom apartment that is $4,000. That is normal if you want to live in a good area. Some 2 bedrooms now are around $4,700-5,000. I know some other expat couples that live here find what they can and then have to pay on top of what the company is paying for them. There is an American Club here, so see if your company will pay the annual membership fee to it. It's worth it, but its about $20,000 to join. Not kidding.

As for your hours, I feel that the hours are much more here...look to be working 8-7 or 9-8 M-F and some Saturdays. If you're still going to be in contact with colleagues back home on the same client, they will request work on days that are public holidays here, but not in the US, so you're really not getting that holiday here.

On a personal note, something I wish people would've told us when we got here, is that the culture is so very different. We are ready to come home tomorrow. The people are rude (not all, but majority) and inconsiderate. Yes, Singapore is safe, but not convenient if you don't have a car.

If you have the opportunity to do the expat program, I think its a great opportunity, but not in Singapore.

I hope this helps some. Good luck!


Have you every thought of living in a less expensive area give your average salary? $4000 for a apartment is expensive.

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Postby sundaymorningstaple » Sun, 14 Apr 2013 4:52 pm

I think I'd take minnie30's remarks with a large grain of salt. (from one who has been here 31 years).


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