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PWC (UK) Research Report


PricewaterhouseCoopers (PWC) is a global network of partner firms offering professional services under the PWC brand. PWC (UK) is a global PWC brand subsidiary specializing in offering accounting services to both public and private entities. The UK subsidiary was founded in 2002 and currently employs over 22000 staff spread across its 19 UK offices (PWC, n.d). The UK firm acts as the coordinating center of the global network of partner firms. The company offers summer internships to students from various academic disciplines to give them practical experiences and skills, thus preparing them for work.

Opportunities for Internship

PWC UK offers students a wide range of opportunities to learn and gain on-the-job experience and skills necessary to boost their employability. The available opportunities are in the area of actuarial, audit, consulting, tax, risk management, technology, and operations (PWC, n.d). The company’s summer internships vary from four to six weeks, with interns working alongside staff on client projects. The internship opportunities allow interns to create valuable networks, gain work experience, and participate in corporate social events. The internship program is tailored to offer practical skills to the interns, thus increasing their employability chances. Prospective interns get enrolled into the program by attending regional induction events where they are provided with insights into the program.

Products and Services

The brand offers a wide range of services focused on solving clients’ business solutions. PWC UK offers services in the areas of audit, business restricting, consulting, legal, forensic, deals, economic solutions, risk management, strategy development, private business, people and organization, and tax solution services. The company also offers management consultancy services to both public and private institutions. Although the firm offers diverse services, it is majorly known and identified with audit and tax consulting services.

Key People

PWC UK is headed by Kevin Ellis, who is the chairman of the board and senior partner. Kevin joined PWC in 1984 on a graduate trainee program and became a specialist in crisis management support with over 26 years of experience. He has been leading the UK firm since 2016, having grown through ranks (PWC, n.d). Another key personality is Lucy Stapleton, the head of UK Deals. She is responsible for corporate finance, transaction services, forensics business, and business restricting in her role. She is a chartered accountant and has been a partner at PWC UK since 2006, holding positions such as Chief Operating Officer for Deals, Pharmaceuticals and Life Sciences Leader, and Transaction Services People Leader.

Size and Structure

PWC global brand has operations in 742 locations spread across 157 countries, employing 284,000 people. In the United Kingdom, PWC has a workforce of 22,000 staff spread across its nineteen offices. In 2021 the PWC UK generated revenues worth 4,447 million Euros, controlling 23% of the UK market share (Javed, 2018). The UK arm of PWC is the coordinating entity for the PWC global activities, making it the major arm of the brands.


PWC UK’s purpose is “to build trust in society and solve important problems for our clients and the communities in which we operate.” To achieve its purpose, the company is driven by values that hold the employees to the highest values possible. The company’s driving values are; care, working together, reimagining the possible, making a difference, and acting with integrity (PWC, n.d). The firm’s employees are expected to act with the utmost integrity and care to make a difference in the lives and businesses of the clients. The employees also strive to work together to reimagine the possible in addressing clients’ problems and issues. The values driving the work culture at PWC UK resonate with my personal values. I highly value and appreciate teamwork, integrity, innovation, and the need to make a difference in the lives of others. The values guiding the firm are not only universal but are a near-perfect replica of my personal values.

Recent Financial Performance

In 2021, PWC UK marked an improvement in its market performance as compared to 2020. The company recorded a 2% increase in revenue in 2021registering £4,447m in revenue compared to £4,380 in 2020. Distributable profit per partner rose by 26.7% to £868,000 from £685,000 in 2020. The company recorded an annual profit of £1,171m in 2021 against £938m in 2020 (PWC, n.d). In 2020, the company was adversely affected by the Covid-19 crisis that affected its performance and overall profitability. The firm struggled to adjust its operations to meet the new challenging work environment. The crisis also affected the company’s clients, thus denying its business as many clients either shut down or scaled down their operations.

However, in 2021 the company adopted a hybrid work model, cut down expenses, postponed and curtailed spending on partner distributions and staff bonuses, and restructured its cost base, thus increasing its financial performance. The declining rate of the Covid crisis and the loosening grip of the containment measures also contributed to the positive variance recorded in 2021. The company expects to maintain its hybrid work model with staff working both in the office and remotely, thus recording positive revenues and financial growth.

Major Competitors

PWC is a global market leader controlling 23% of the UK’s market. It is among the big four accounting firms: Deloitte, Ernst & Young, and KPMG. The four firms audit over 80% of all businesses globally, thus dominating the market. Other than the other members of the big four accounting firms PWC UK also face competition from other industry players specializing in other business lines (White, 2018). Some of the brand’s competitors outside the big four accounting firms include Bain & Company, McKinsey & Company, HighPoint Solutions, and Accenture. Bain & Company and McKinsey & Company are management consultancy firms with a strong presence in the UK and around the world. HighPoint Solutions is a consultancy firm providing healthcare consulting services and strategic planning, while Accenture deals in strategy, interactive technology, consulting, digitized operational services.

Corporate Social Responsibility

In line with the brand’s purpose, PWC UK engages in a number of corporate social responsibility activities. The company empowers communities through sharing of talents and professional skills aimed and improving the communities’ welfare. The company’s corporate social responsibility programs are centered around fundraising, donations and financial contributions, discounted work, and volunteering (Zainee and Puteh, 2020). The company allows its staff to volunteer their skills for up to six days a year and aims at volunteering 50,000 hours annually. PWC has mapped volunteering into its career development framework to encourage staff to volunteer their skills and expertise. The mapping helps staff understand how volunteering contributes to their skill development and has included it in its staff performance appraisal.

Future Strategy

PWC has established itself as a market leader in the UK, offering innovative solutions to the consumers’ problems. The company heavily relies on human capital to run its operations and realize its goals and targets. However, the work environment is tremendously changing, with automation becoming a major trend. The covid-19 crisis also revolutionized the work environment by disrupting workplace arrangements and settings. Companies like PWC had to develop and devise ways of addressing the workplace challenges, and this resulted to a hybrid work model. The company’s future strategy is to retain the hybrid work model where staff will continue working both from the office and remotely. The firm also aims at automating most of its processes to reduce its reliance on human beings and increase effectiveness and efficiency by eliminating human error (Ruggles and LeClair, 2020). PWC is actively exploring artificial intelligence, big data, and machine learning to automate its operations and processes.


PWC UK is a market leader controlling 23% of the market share in the United Kingdom. The company offers consultancy services in areas of tax, legal, actuary, management, business restructuring, and auditing, among other areas of business. The company has a well-structured CSR program that is informed by its purpose and the underlying core values. The CSR program is embedded into the company’s performance appraisal giving all staff up to six days of voluntary services. The brand’s purpose is driven by values of integrity, care, reimagination, teamwork, and making a difference. The values form the backbone of the organization’s culture and inform and drive the work relations and employee engagements.

The company has a summer internship program that is four to six weeks long and is designed to offer students an opportunity to develop job skills, build their confidence, and increase their employability. The interns are paired with the staff to work on clients’ projects, thus giving them a real-life experience of the workplace. The internship program begins with prospective interns attending regional induction sessions where they are provided with insights into the company’s operations. With the brand’s values matching with mine and given the great work environment and the career potential offered by the firm, this is the right opportunity for me. I have the right set of skills, attitudes, and values to fit into PWC’s work environment through the internship program.

Reference List

Javed, S., 2018. Does organisation behaviour affect performance of auditing firms. International Journal of Engineering Technologies and Management Research5(1), pp.90-98., (n.d) PWC. Available at (Accessed: 20 March 2022)

Ruggles, A. and LeClair, A., 2020. Automation and Analytics through a Digitally Transformed (and Remote) Workforce. Tax Executive72, p.84.

White, J., 2018. Is the UK about to turn against the Big 4?. International Tax Review.

Zainee, I.A. and Puteh, F., 2020. Corporate social responsibility impact on talent retention among Generation Y. Revista de Gestão.


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