August 11, 2022

Compensation Watch ’22: Did Huge Revenue Boost = Better Raises For BDO USA Employees? (UPDATE)

[UPDATE: New average raise percentage for L6->L7 in 2022.]

A couple weeks ago we reported on BDO USA’s stellar fiscal 2022, as the firm raked in just under $2.5 billion in revenue—a nearly 25% increase over 2021’s revenue of $2 billion. At the end of last week’s post, we wondered whether BDO’s large revenue gain would benefit employees during comp conversation time. Well, the 2022 BDO comp thread is out on r/accounting, so let’s take a look. 

To see how raises were at BDO this year compared to previous years, we analyzed this year’s comp thread as well as the 2021, 2020, and the 2019 comp threads on Reddit. We also went back in the archive and looked at the 201720162015, and 2014 comp threads on Going Concern. We then calculated the average raise percentage for each step up in rank or promotion where data was available (i.e, L2->L3, L3->L4, L4->L5, L5->L6, etc.).

People who know, know BDO names its employee levels a bit differently than its competitors. Here’s a key for people not in the know:

  • L1: intern
  • L2/L3: staff/experienced staff (A1/A2)
  • L4/L5: senior/experienced senior (S1/S2)
  • L6/L7: manager/experienced manager (M1/M2)
  • L8/L9: senior manager/director (SM/D)
  • L10: partner

The average raise percentages below don’t take into account factors like location/cost of living, line of service, academic degrees, rating (needs improvement, keep developing, successful, and fantastic), and bonuses/awards. This is just the average percentage of how much base pay increased per step up in rank/promotion.

So has it been good news or bad news for BDOers? Percentages are below (2022’s are in bold):

L2->L3

  • 19% (2022)
  • 9.7% (2021)
  • 6.1% (2020)
  • 11% (2019; only one entry)
  • N/A (2017)
  • 9% (2016)
  • N/A (2015)
  • N/A (2014)

L2->L4

  • N/A (2022)
  • 36% (2021; only one entry)
  • 9.5% (2020)
  • 18% (2019; only one entry)
  • N/A (2017)
  • 9% (2016)
  • N/A (2015)
  • N/A (2014)

L3->L4

  • 15.6% (2022)
  • 12.2% (2021)
  • 8.2% (2020)
  • N/A (2019)
  • 18% (2017; only one entry)
  • 8% (2016; only one entry)
  • N/A (2015)
  • N/A (2014)

L4->L5

  • 7.3% (2022)
  • 16.4% (2021)
  • 9% (2020)
  • N/A (2019)
  • 7% (2017; only one entry)
  • N/A (2016)
  • N/A (2015)
  • 14% (2014; only one entry)

L4->L6

  • 10.5% (2022; only one entry)
  • N/A (2021)
  • N/A (2020)
  • N/A (2019)
  • N/A (2017)
  • N/A (2016)
  • N/A (2015)
  • N/A (2014)

L5->L6

  • 17.1% (2022)
  • 46% (2021)
  • 8% (2020; only one entry)
  • N/A (2019)
  • N/A (2017)
  • 11% (2016; only one entry)
  • N/A (2015)
  • N/A (2014)

L6->L7

  • 14.4% (2022)
  • N/A (2021)
  • 7.5% (2020)
  • N/A (2019)
  • N/A (2017)
  • N/A (2016)
  • 3.5% (2015; one entry)
  • N/A (2014)

L7->L8

  • N/A (2022)
  • 23% (2021; only one entry)
  • N/A (2020)
  • N/A (2019)
  • N/A (2017)
  • N/A (2016)
  • N/A (2015)
  • N/A (2014)

L8->L9

  • 16% (2022; only one entry)
  • N/A (2021)
  • N/A (2020)
  • N/A (2019)
  • N/A (2017)
  • N/A (2016)
  • N/A (2015)
  • N/A (2014)

Staff raises aren’t too shabby (one person said they got a 32.8% raise from L2->L3 in a market where BDO has lost staff to the Big 4), and neither are pay bumps for staff who have been promoted to senior, with the biggest raise being 20.8%, according to the 2022 BDO comp thread on r/accounting. The 7.3% average raise for seniors going up a level seems small, especially with inflation through the roof, compared to other years, but keep in mind there are only two L4->L5 entries in the thread so far. Even the 10.5% for the double promotion from L4->L6 seems like it should’ve been larger—and that person agreed: “Underwhelmed given the double promo.

We’ll continue to keep an eye on the 2022 BDO comp thread on Reddit to see if there are new contributions, and we’ll update this post accordingly.

Related article:

Compensation Watch ’21: Did BDO USA Ante Up This Year?

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