Bonus Watch ’21: Deloitte’s Audit Practice Is Trying to Nip This ‘Great Resignation’ Thing In the Bud By Offering Retention Bonuses

There’s a firm that finally gets it when it comes to giving employees of one of its core lines of service a reason not to join the mass exodus that is going on right now in the Big 4.

It’s not promoting some fictitiously great company culture. It’s not giving employees Omaha Steaks or 1-800-Flowers gift cards. It’s not throwing pizza parties during busy season. The only way the Big 4 can retain their prized employees during “The Great Resignation” is by giving them more money. Plain and simple.

You would think Deloitte, the most behemoth of the behemoth accounting firms, would have realized this during compensation season. But an analysis of employee raises this year showed Deloitte didn’t loosen the purse strings like PwC and EY did (we’ll be analyzing raises at KPMG soon).

However, last month Deloitte announced that the firm would be providing mid-year salary adjustments to employees in all service lines before the end of 2021. But in an email to Deloitters, CEO Joe Ucuzoglu wrote, “In some markets and for some professionals, our compensation remains highly competitive and no current adjustments are warranted,” so not everyone will receive bumps in pay.

Then last week during an all-hands call, Lara Abrash, chair and CEO of Deloitte & Touche, the firm’s audit and assurance practice, made a surprise announcement to her group (from a post on r/accounting; bolded part added for emphasis):

Deloitte Audit

Hybrid – will make options for those who want to remain virtual beyond this year.

Compensation adjustments – Announced previously. All markets will be eligible for adjustments, including enabling areas. Adjustments will be based on market data and level, not performance. Will communicate late October/early November. Adjustments will average in high single to low double digit. Over 80% will receive a 10% or higher raise. Highest percentages will be focused to seniors and managers.

Longer term compensation strategy for bonuses – This will be a one-time award for certain US client service professionals. US A&A professionals second-years through SM1/2. Amounts will vary by level. Between $20k and $35k. Those who receive will stay until at least the end of May 2023. Paid out 1/7/2022.

But of course there’s a catch (from a different post on r/accounting):

Caveat being: you must stay until may 2023 or you’ll have to pay back in full

Here’s a thread with a decent discussion on r/Deloitte about the retention bonus:

Thoughts on A&A retention bonus? from deloitte


This seems like a win-win for Deloitte. You give employees who were thinking of leaving in the next year (like the OP above) a reason not to leave before May 31, 2023—the last day of Deloitte’s 2023 fiscal year—AND if they do leave, the firm gets its money back.

We haven’t heard about any of the other Big 4 firms or larger midtier firms offering retention bonuses to employees. If we missed one, let us know in the comments or via the contact info below. We also haven’t heard if Deloitte is offering this retention bonus in its consulting and tax practices? If the firm has, get in touch with us.

So who’s taking the retention bonus at D&T?

Related articles:

Compensation Watch ’21: Deloitte Staff Gets Some Encouraging News About Raises and Promotions

Compensation Watch ’21: Deloitte Puts Mid-Year Raises On the Table (Updated with Email From Deloitte CEO)

The post Bonus Watch ’21: Deloitte’s Audit Practice Is Trying to Nip This ‘Great Resignation’ Thing In the Bud By Offering Retention Bonuses appeared first on Going Concern.