• FAQ's


We understand applying for a grad role can be a daunting experience and can raise lots of questions. We have answered some of these questions to help you stay informed through the journey. If you have any other questions please get in touch with the Student Recruitment team using the contact form below. 



How many graduates do BDO employ? / How many grad roles are there?

The number of roles varies for each service line. The largest number of graduates positions are within our Audit team. 

I see there are 15 offices across New Zealand. Can I specify my preferred location? 

Yes, you can specify your preferred location. In Auckland we have offices in East Tamaki, Auckland CBD (Victoria Park) and Takapuna. Overall we have 15 offices Nationwide. Our main graduates roles are recruited in Auckland, Wellington and Christchurch.  

To what extent do my online assessment results impact my application? Are these key in selection criteria, or is my experience/academic results prioritised?

We look at the overall  application holistically. BDO are looking for well rounded individuals. In addition to your academic record, we are also interested in your previous experience and soft skills. We consider all factors when reviewing and shortlisting applicants. We do receive a high volume of applications for our graduate roles so would encourage you to ensure when applying and completing any assessments that you are in an environment free of distractions. 

How will I know where I am at in the application process? 

We are 'people' people and understand silence is really unsettling when you are making a decision around your future and what this may hold. We will communicate with you regularly so remember to check your emails so you don't miss anything from us. Once we work through the initial applications and you are successfully through to our next round communication will be via phone/email. 

What’s the difference between BDO and the bigger professional CA firms? 

BDO services a different portfolio of clients with a different value proposition. We largely target mid-market NZ businesses which provides a great opportunity to build and foster strong relationships with our clients and truly get to know the people you work with. We think we have the best of both worlds with a global presence, reputable clients and a strong network of support for learning and development. In addition to a friendly, approachable vibe.

How do I decide the best service line for me? 

Have a look at our overview and speak to our former graduates at our events/career fairs to gain an insight into the different area. Jump on and have a look at our stories so you can meet the people behind the numbers from each of our service lines. 

Why should I join a CA firm vs a commercial role as a graduate? 

This is a widely debated question to which there is no right or wrong answer. Joining a CA firm provides a great grounding for your learning and development as you will have exposure to a range of client's systems and learn industry best practice. Professional services have extensive expertise, providing a great opportunity for mentoring. 



Career Path


Will working at BDO benefit and support my career goals? 

As a graduate you will be supported by a friendly and approachable team, and be mentored by an experienced member of the team to aid you in every step of your professional development. Through the appraisal system you will constantly be in touch with your mentor  (Senior Staff, Partners/Associates) who will be there to help you where needed and talk to the right people about your job preferences. While BDO will support you on your CA path and provide the resources and help for every module, you'll also complete the modules with other graduates and not go through the process alone. You will have great exposure to a whole range of clients and industries (from individuals to mid-size corporates), providing a great overall baseline to start out your career.

What is a service line? 

BDO has three service lines that we recruit graduate roles for -  Audit, Tax and Advisory.

How many service lines can I apply for? Can I apply for BAS & Tax? (or vice versa, audit etc.) 

We request that you research each service line as much as you can and apply for the service line that best suits you. There is the option to have a first choice and a second; the first choice is what we look at initially and allocate you to.

How will BDO help me to develop my career? 

BDO provides initial training when you are on-boarded. You are then provided with continuous online and regular in person training. In addition, BDO will support you through your Chartered Accountancy journey. 

How will a graduate role at BDO benefit me? 

A BDO career takes many shapes and forms. Whether you are looking to gain your CA qualification and head overseas to gain some global experience, have goals and aspirations to become a Partner, or are looking to go into a commercial role, a career with BDO will equip you with transferable skills through our various learning and development pathways. 

Where are the graduate roles based?

Auckland, Wellington & Christchurch mainly however from time to time the smaller regions will also have graduate roles. If you are looking for a graduate role outside of these areas, advise this in your application. 

Will I get to work directly with clients as a grad?

With most audits taking place on-site at the client's premises, all of the audit team get to interact and get to know the client's accountancy team, other members of staff and CEO/CFO depending on the size of the company. This is what is great about BDO as a team is usually around 4 members so all team members get to work directly with the client. 
The longer you spend at the firm the more interaction you have with clients. In your first year you might have a couple of meetings with clients and contacted many directly over the phone/email.

Who are the sorts of clients I might work with? 

"We work with big brands from a range of industries and talk to our people to find out their client preferences. Our client's industries extend across manufacturing, IT/Software, Property, Finance, Not for profit, Hospitality, Healthcare, Tourism, Sports, Food & Beverage/FMCG and FMC's which offers a lot of exposure." 
"Hard to put a limit on it. Could be from individuals like yourself to mid-size corporates generating hundreds of millions and anything inbetween."

What’s the office like? 

Our offices reflect a modern way of working. 
As an Audit graduate you will work onsite  at our client's offices in conjunction with your time at our BDO office.  
Auckland CBD Office
"Same building as NZME so always something going on. Great location and facilities. Open plan."




I still have 12 months of study remaining. Am I eligible to apply now? 

The best time to apply is as soon as the enrolments open, as BDO start interviewing straight away and there are limited places. Places are filled as the right person is found not at the end of the application process. 

What are BDO looking for in their graduates?

BDO are looking for well rounded graduates with appropriate degrees related to their chosen career path. Graduates should be driven and well motivated but also work well in a team and be open to changing teams frequently with the change of client and be able to adapt to change.

Do you only hire people with the highest grades? 

Grades aren't everything during the application process but it is good to have an expected level of the fundamentals of accounting. Being a well rounded individual is something that BDO values. 

If I am not currently living in an area that I would like to work, can I still apply?

Yes, we accept applications if you are not living in this area. Interviews will take place over skype/phone. Travel may be required for the application process, however BDO would cover the expense of this travel. If you are in the area, BDO will be happy to provide an office tour at a later date. 

Can I apply for BDO if my degree is not major in Accounting, Finance or Economics? 

Unfortunately not, we only accept applications from degree holders who major in Accounting and/or Finance. 

Can I apply for BAS & Tax? (or vice versa, audit etc) 

You only apply for one service line and pick a secondary option being another service line. 




How is BDO different from other accounting firms offering graduate roles? 

Working at BDO provides you with the opportunities to work across a range of small-medium sized businesses. As a graduate you will be given more opportunity to interact and work with the top employees of the business and are exposed to a greater range of jobs/businesses. The maximum amount of time spent on a client is 3-4 weeks (usually 2 weeks approx.) unlike other account firms which can be months.

What is the culture really like? 

We pride ourselves on creating genuine relationships with our people and our clients. The culture is very much about the people. As a grad it's great because you start with a lot of people your own age and have a big group of intermediates above you who understand the level you are at and always there to help. "It’s great. Everyone is very friendly, no egos. Weekly Friday drinks make it very easy to meet people from across the firm."

What is a normal day like in Audit, Tax or Advisory? 

Everyday is different with different clients, tasks and problems to navigate and solve. 

Outside of the day to day what else happens at BDO?  

Both sporting and social events - our social club provides events and activities throughout the year, these include the mid-winter ball, quiz nights and boat party. There are a lot of sport teams (touch, football, etc) across the firm which is a great way to meet people and rock some of the BDO gear. 

Conferences and training courses - training courses are provided off-site for approximately a week with graduates across all offices in New Zealand. We have quarterly updates within the audit department where information about audits, new clients, successful jobs, standard updates are all shared.


Diversity and Inclusion


What is BDO’s approach/stance on diversity and inclusion?

We value a diverse organisation where employees can bring their whole selves to work. We strive to empower people to succeed and be part of our ongoing strategy 


Learning and Development


How much access do you get to Partners and senior people in the business as a graduate? 


When you first start working in Audit you work on schools where you work very closely with the seniors and managers that run the training as well as the partners who are always happy to help and often come and check on you. Over the course of a normal audit working day you work closely with members of the team across a variety of levels. 

How will BDO support me with my CAANZ program? 

BDO has a CA pathway programme where they provide financial support to employees to become a Chartered Accountant. BDO provide support to cover membership fees, course fees and study support. BDO also offers time off work to study before your final exam day. 

What training & development will I get at BDO?

Online training: is provided as needed with new standard updates and throughout your audit career progression as you move between different levels (graduate, intermediate, senior). 
Annual training: A week long off-site course which is nationwide, multiple instructors/seniors who take different sessions each day, this prepares you for the following year workload and new audit areas. 
Weekly training, access to online learning and development resources, annual tax conference. 

Will I be able to transfer locally or internationally with BDO?

We offer a mixture of short term and long term secondments to our experienced/qualified team. 

I see that I have a Buddy, what does this mean? 

Everyone has a buddy that they are introduced to prior to joining. Your buddy will support you in your first few months and throughout your career at BDO. The purpose of a Buddy is to ensure you "know what you don't know". We know this sounds cliché however there is only so much information that will resonate and your buddy is available to answer any questions that arise. 
"From your first day, your buddy will show you the ropes and be your go-to with any questions you may have."





What are the employment benefits of working at BDO? 

These vary slightly for each office, however as an organisation you will receive a competitive starting salary, paid study leave, great client relationships, payment of approved professional qualifications, mentoring, external study support programs, payment of professional membership fees, annual flu vaccination, EAP services.


Social Responsibility


What is BDO doing in terms of social responsibility? 

BDO are actively involved in both community and National events. BDO offer all employees a community day whereby they can choose to participate as a team or as an individual to support their a charity that is aligned to their personal or team values. 


Work Life Balance


I’ve heard graduates in corporate firms work long hours and weekends, is this true? 

"There may be times where you are asked to work overtime (after 5:00pm or weekends) however this is always in consultation with your manager and time in lieu is provided as compensation. Usually, the amount of time you are booked to a job is enough to complete the graduate level of work in. At the start of the year the graduates as a team audit nearly 100 schools which have a short deadline, this is when some overtime is expected of you but schools are completed by grads each year and this only occurs once."
"Generally we head home at a standard time. During the busy season (December, March) there may be a few late nights however we are always well rewarded during these periods (treats, parties)."

What flexiblity around working hours is offered at BDO? 

This varies for each team and each level and is at the discretion of the Partner. We accommodate with flexible working hours and locations where possible particulary once you are settled into your role. 

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