The Big Four in Ireland is reacting to the economic slowdown
with redundancies, pay cuts and a possible drop in graduate
recruitment.

KPMG Ireland is to lay off about 200 staff and Ernst & Young
in the UK and Ireland said 120 people are at risk of redundancy.
PricewaterhouseCoopers Ireland (PwC) is to cut the pay packets of
some professional and support staff by 10 percent while Deloitte
will also cull some positions.

KPMG Ireland is making about a tenth of its workforce redundant
and forcing other staff to take pay cuts of up to 10 percent. Both
measures will take effect in May.

The redundancies were initially thought to affect recently
qualified accountants and support staff but Irish media reports
suggest 75 job cuts could be at manager or director level.

The Irish Independent reported 40 senior staff would be culled
from the tax division, 20 from advisory, 10 from audit and five
from support services. Another 85 cuts will be made to newly
qualified accountants with the remaining 45 cuts from support and
secretarial areas.

Pay cuts of 5 percent will apply to remaining staff earning less
than €35,000 ($44,000) and 10 percent to salaries above this
figure.

No trainees have been made redundant and the programme will not
impact the 250 graduates joining the firm this year.

Ernst & Young said about 120 people were at risk of
redundancy in its UK and Ireland offices. An E&Y spokesperson
said some of its workforce has been redeployed, particularly in
restructuring, but also in other growth areas across the Europe,
Middle East, India and Africa region.

E&Y expects to take on around 600 graduates in the UK and
Ireland later this year.

PwC is making plans for a number of initiatives to avoid
redundancies, including reduced working hours, incentivised leave
for travel or study and secondments to other firms in the PwC
network.

Where there is surplus capacity and all other options have been
exhausted, some roles may be made redundant in the future.

Deloitte Ireland is to cut about 70 staff.

Nicholas Moody