PwC Reviews in San Francisco, CA

Updated October 29, 2014
Updated October 29, 2014
5,212 Reviews
3.6
5,212 Reviews
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PwC US Chairman & Senior Partner Robert Moritz
Robert Moritz
1,086 Ratings

Review Highlights

Pros
  • No work-life balance during busy season because the nature of assurance work (in 254 reviews)

  • You learn a lot about how to run complex businesses in fast-changing environments (in 129 reviews)


Cons
  • Work-life Balance does not exist as much as they say they are still working on it (in 902 reviews)

  • Long hours during busy season but thats to be expected at any audit firm in the city (in 855 reviews)

More Highlights

136 Employee Reviews Back to all reviews

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  1.  

    Working for a community hospital

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in San Pablo, CA
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in San Pablo, CA

    I worked at PwC full-time (more than an year)

    Pros

    Working at a non-profit community hospital was great because you have the chance to give back

    Cons

    Financial stability was always an issue.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Keep working at engaging the staff

    Recommends
    Negative Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  2.  

    assurance intern

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in San Francisco, CA
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in San Francisco, CA

    I have been working at PwC as an intern (less than an year)

    Pros

    -work and life balance
    -competitive pay
    -big name in the accounting industry
    -nice colleagues and good projects

    Cons

    -The office is big, so you might not have chances to talk to a lot of people
    -Managers and upper level are not approachable

  3.  

    Great place to work if you are looking for tier 2 consulting and if you are a go getter

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Senior Associate - Advisory in San Francisco, CA
    Current Employee - Senior Associate - Advisory in San Francisco, CA

    I have been working at PwC full-time (more than an year)

    Pros

    Plenty of opportunities and talent around you to learn from.

    Cons

    Most decisions are made based on who you know and what your network is.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Make sure all employees are considered for growth and are informed on their compensation decisions

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO
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  5.  

    Satisfying but glad I'm done!

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Director in San Francisco, CA
    Former Employee - Director in San Francisco, CA

    I worked at PwC full-time (more than 10 years)

    Pros

    The people are the best part of working here. I've worked here for 10+ years straight out of college and you won't find better people at the staff level from an intellectual, hard-working, great group to work with after work, type of people. This was not an easy job, but the knowledge you learn, the clients you work on, are top notch. If you're willing to work hard, 50+ hours/week for ~6 months of the year, and want to learn a lot and get your CPA, this is the job for you.

    Cons

    Management style is ad hoc. While PwC as a whole has great culture, it really depends on the line of service you're in and what specialty group. The managers and above in your distinct group set the tone for your experience. I was in the Assurance and Advisory lines of services and the managers, directors and partners in Advisory had better management style. Also, revenue is recognized differently which leads to more collaboration vs in-house fighting by partners, and less politics to deal with. Too much politics and red tape and admin to deal with for managers and above. You spend a lot of your time dealing with this rather than your work, clients and people - things that really matter.

    Pay - PwC claims to be the trend-setter among the Big 4 but I think they all pay the same. At the staff level, we're talking maybe a $3-5K difference for same market, same level and same background skill-set. Above, it really depends on the industry and the value you bring to the Firm. Just remember, if you go to another Big 4, you can always get a pay bump.

    Promotions - I'm ambivalent on this. People do get promoted here, it's a pyramid model, and you always need new staff who get promoted to senior, etc. Recently, due to large turnover (due to overworking our people from too much revenue and not enough qualified people), people are expected to do the work of a class above them, yet not being paid or recognized for it. Unless your evaluations show that you've mastered all the areas at your level well, you wont get promoted even if you've been acting as a senior or manager for half the year. That being said, I've also seen many cases where people have been promoted early, before they were ready, due to turnover, and a need for more seniors or managers. In my experience, this is the worst thing to do to a person. Unreal expectations are placed and in most cases, this person will perform sub-par for about 2 years before they catch up. But hey, some people don't mind as they get the title and pay increase along with the promotion.

    Vacation - A wash. You get 15 days right off the bat for new hires and after being there for 2-3 years, you get 22 days. 22 days is the max whether you've been there 5, 10 or 20 years. However, you also get unlimited sick, 10 holidays (7-8 designated and 2-3 for you to pick depending on what day of the week holidays fall on), and the Firm usually has a few extra days off for 4th of July and the break between Xmas and New Year. The con is that once you make manager, most people stop accruing their vacation because they can't take time off. And PwC does not pay out for vacation so most people end up just losing their vacation time. Accounting-wise, you still earn vacation but it maxes out at 22 days. My last few years at PwC, I probably lost over a week of vacation due to being unable to take it - a new opportunity pops up, a fire drill at one of the clients, etc.

    Sales - to succeed at PwC, you have to be willing to sell our services, people, etc to clients. New clients, existing, whomever, as long a revenue continues to come in. That's their growth model. More partners = more revenue. However, we oftentimes don't have the people to do the work. PwC is hiring like crazy. But when they don't have time for proper training, these people struggle and are thrown out to our clients without instructions. If you don't have strong seniors or managers able to coach you on the job, you're going to struggle. PwC hiring non-qualified people to do the job is also not helping. More bodies does not equate to quality work performed. Catch 22 situation.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Don't take on new clients if you can't properly staff your jobs with qualified people to do the work. Give opportunities to the staff to succeed. Our foundation and our bread and butter are our people - invest in them and groom them for the jobs (more and better coaching/training). Would more happy hours and social/connectivity events really break the bank? Headhunting fees for more staff and training are more expensive.

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  6.  

    Too political, work not interesting at all.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Senior Associate, Advisory in San Francisco, CA
    Current Employee - Senior Associate, Advisory in San Francisco, CA

    I have been working at PwC full-time (more than 5 years)

    Pros

    Big company, lots of mobility oppotunities

    Cons

    if you're not visible - you won't get promoted even if you work 100+ hours a week

    Doesn't Recommend
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  7.  

    Felt like a number. Boring work.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Tax in San Francisco, CA
    Former Employee - Tax in San Francisco, CA

    I worked at PwC as an intern (less than an year)

    Pros

    Meet great people in other groups besides my own. The office had a great view. Internship experience seemed to be a realistic representation of what full time would be like.

    Cons

    Boring work and somewhat mindless work... Counted pages of tax returns. Virtually no group work. No concern for work life balance.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Better training and onboarding procedures for interns and new hires.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Positive Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  8.  

    Awesome People, Tough Work

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - IT Risk Assurance in San Francisco, CA
    Current Employee - IT Risk Assurance in San Francisco, CA

    I have been working at PwC as an intern (less than an year)

    Pros

    The people were down to earth, incredibly real, and awesome to hang out with. I enjoyed almost all of the individuals I worked with.

    Cons

    IT Risk Assurance was not for me. The work wasn't very rewarding and while management was understanding, you can push your career path on their terms.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Partner-worship was very annoying. It's like they were gods.

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  9.  

    BCG and McKenzie hours for no pay

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Associate in San Francisco, CA
    Current Employee - Associate in San Francisco, CA

    I have been working at PwC full-time (more than an year)

    Pros

    I have nothing really great to say about this company. I've been with them for two years. I helped build a now-thriving service offering within our practice, and the only thing I got out of it was a laughable bonus and some practice with financial modeling.

    Cons

    Terrible comp for hours worked (read: less than minimum wage when you account for number of hours worked), no respect for employee work-life balance (work nights and weekends regularly, have been harassed by managers after a 20 hour weekend for requesting an additional three hours on a Sunday night), less-than-brilliant management, and partners who genuinely don't care about their staff's well-being.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    If your business model requires you to treat your employees (especially those who bring substantial value in terms of engagement economics) like s***, at least pay us well. I can handle being talked down to, but it's not worth it for what I'm paid.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  10.  

    Great place to start your career

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Audit Senior Associate in San Francisco, CA
    Former Employee - Audit Senior Associate in San Francisco, CA

    I worked at PwC full-time (more than 3 years)

    Pros

    PwC offers great exposure to learn and grow when your early in your career. Having a name like PwC on a resume is a really great big help, everyone loves BIG 4 alumni! Great opportunities to work with various different clients and people, thus expanding your network and helping to build strong relationships that will benefit and help you later on in your career.
    I definitely learnt allot in my time there and am grateful to the firm for all I learnt as well as what I learnt about myself.

    Cons

    The work/life balance and financial benefits are not as rewarding for the time, energy and effort you put in. Otherwise no other cons.

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  11. 2 people found this helpful  

    Poor Work/Life Balance, Boring, Unsatisfying Work

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Risk Assurance Associate in San Francisco, CA
    Current Employee - Risk Assurance Associate in San Francisco, CA

    I have been working at PwC full-time (less than an year)

    Pros

    PwC is a huge company so there is tons of opportunity to learn and work for a lot of different clients.
    Decent salary
    Good bonus structure

    Cons

    Unexpected travel - they'll just tell you you have to be somewhere for weeks or months at a time and you don't get a say in it
    Awful office conditions/presence. If you are in the office (which a lot of people rarely ever are), you'll be sitting at a cubicle not speaking to anyone.
    No "culture" to speak of. No sense of teamwork with other emnployees.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Stop treating this like a corporate bureaucracy. It isn't fun to work here because of the awful culture you've created.

    Doesn't Recommend
    No opinion of CEO

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