First it was KPMG Canada earlier in the week, now Edmund Tadros of the Australian Financial Review is reporting some grim news regarding job cuts at the Australian House of Klynveld:
Professional services firm KPMG will cut 200 roles and slash the pay of equity partners by almost 17 per cent in response to the drop in client demand caused by the COVID-19 pandemic.
The 200 roles are in areas where “demand has dramatically reduced or where we expect a reduction”, CEO Gary Wingrove said in an eight minute video sent out to all staff at the firm on Thursday morning.
The cuts to staff and contractor numbers amount to about two per cent of the firm’s 9000-strong workforce.
In addition to the cuts in pay and profit distributions that equity partners are being forced to take, AFR reports that salaried partners and staff earning more than $62,000 will be asked to take a pay cut of 20% between May and August, which comes out to 7% of annual income.
If the expected downturn ends up not lasting as long as the firm is planning for, Wingrove said he is committed to paying back any savings from the cost-cutting measures to partners and staff, according to AFR.
The 200 layoffs in Australia likely matches the amount of KPMG jobs that were cut throughout Canada this week. KPMGers were reportedly let go in Toronto, Vancouver, and Calgary (that we know of) on March 30, and some have speculated that a couple hundred people in total were laid off across the country.
Outgoing KPMG U.S. CEO Lynne Doughtie tried to calm the fears of KPMGers in the States last week, saying in an internal video message to employees that protecting them during the COVID-19 crisis was her first priority and that layoffs would be an “absolute last resort.”
But at this point, who the hell knows what’s really going to happen.
KPMG to cut 200 staff, slash partner pay by up to 17pc [Australian Financial Review]