Henry Keizer

KPMG’s #2 in the U.S., Henry Keizer, Is Stepping Down

We've confirmed that Henry Keizer, KPMG's Deputy Chairman and Chief Operating Officer, is retiring later this year due to "personal reasons." A number of anonymous sources alerted us to the news and we were able to confirm it with a trusted source as well as obtain a screenshot of CEO John Veihmeyer's message to the […]

KPMG Seeks Benchwarmers

For the past year or so, we've noted the efforts of PwC to stack up its talent via "competitive poaching," mostly at the expense of its smaller rival, KPMG. During this time, people familiar with the situation have informed us that this trend has been noticed by people at KPMG with slight agitation. In one […]

Promotion Watch ’11: KPMG Admits 166 New Partners in the Americas

That’s right boys and girls, 166 new lucky Klynveldians will be taking a seat at the big kids table, only to be poached by PwC in the next 2-3 years. Despite the risk that many of these new partners will trade blue squares for autumnal Atari, John Veihmeyer and Henry Keizer were excited to welcome the newest members of the club:

“These new partners are role models for high performance – with a passion for quality, an unyielding commitment to integrity and outstanding service, and a dedication to helping clients cut through the complexity in this dynamic environment,” said John B. Veihmeyer, Chairman of KPMG’s Americas region and Chairman and CEO of KPMG LLP (U.S.).

“We are very proud of each of these new partners, and we look forward to their continued leadership. We’re especially grateful to the spouses, family, friends, coworkers, and mentors who have played a key role in their development and their career success,” Veihmeyer said.

Henry R. Keizer, Deputy Chairman of the Americas region and Deputy Chairman and COO, KPMG LLP (U.S.) said, “With their steadfast focus on technical excellence, professionalism, teaming and relationship building, these new partners have helped us make great strides in achieving our strategic priorities.

“Their ability to engage and motivate our people has also been critical to our efforts in fostering a high-performance culture – thereby driving the firm and our people to the next level,” Keizer said.

The KPMG press release doesn’t have a breakdown of the numbers but luckily we got our virtual hands on an email that has the breakdown. We won’t name names but it’s probably moot since someone at PwC Experienced Hire recruiting probably has them all on a hit list already. ANYWAY, here’s the breakdown by service line for the U.S. (74 new partners):

Advisory – 26
Audit – 27
Tax – 21

And by line of business:

Information, Communications and Entertainment – 12
Financial Services – 17
Healthcare and Pharm – 5
Industrial Markets – 19
Private Equity – 4
Mid Market – 3
Government/Public Sector – 1
Consumer Markets – 9
Other – 4

Congrats to all the new partners!

[via KPMG]

Bonus Watch ’11: KPMG Officially Rolls Out “Early Career Investment Bonus” Program for Senior Associates

Last month we told you that KPMG was kicking around the idea of loyalty bonuses for senior associates. Today we bring you the good news that the firm has officially announced the “Early Career Investment Bonus” which more or less amounts to a loyalty bonus.

This news was brought to Klynveldians this morning by John Veihmeyer and Henry Keizer (full memo on page 2). Let’s take a look at what the boys had to say:

Here’s how it works: If you are a current CSD senior associate with a 1, 2, or 3 rating you will be awarded $4,000 to be paid on May 15, 2013, provided you are employed by the firm on that date��������������������ut it gets better. By December 31, 2011 (just prior to the earnings period), you can elect to defer that $4,000 award for one year or two years and watch it grow:

• Defer the bonus for one additional year and receive $8,000 in May 2014
• Defer the bonus for two additional years and receive $12,000 in May 2015

And it gets better still because next year the cycle starts all over again. And, the following year, it starts again! So a typical first-year senior can look forward to three ECIB cycles with the opportunity to “layer” up to $36,000 in total bonus payments by the end of the last cycle. Alternatively, participants who are eligible for multiple ECIB enrollment cycles can choose different deferment options for each cycle, giving them theopportunity to customize the timing and amount of their ECIB award to meet their own needs or particular life events, like a down payment on a new home.

Obviously the catch here is that you’ll have to endure the next few years of your life within the House of Klynveld. But to that end, it seems like a halfway decent opportunity. Some might see this as a suicide mission but if you do in fact make it to May 15, 2015, that’s $12,000 in your pocket. John and Hank even gave us a nice example:

As this example shows, it will take a pretty huge commitment from anyone looking to score all three of the cycles for the big payout of $36,000. SIX. YEARS. AWAY. I won’t even begin to try and tell you what can happen in that time frame. Obama will have finished his second term by then (assuming re-election, obv). Countless people you know who are gigantic losers will get married, have kids and then probably get divorced. Facebook (and many people on it) will be dead. I’LL BE ON THE CUSP OF MY 40s. Get it? This isn’t exactly around the corner, people.

All told, this is a pretty progressive idea put out by KPMG and it seems better than the Above and Beyond awards which were a total flop.

So HoK, what say you? Got any career moves planned in the next two years or you sitting tight for the $12k? Anyone feel like the firm will take the opportunity to guilt those that don’t defer the bonus? Does anyone know if this in addition to any annual incentive comp? Discuss.

KPMG Loyalty Bonus

KPMG’s ‘Next Level’ Is Here and You’re Probably Going to Be Very Disappointed and/or Confused

For those of you that have been anxiously awaiting the details on KPMG’s “Next Level” like the Royal nuptials, we have the details straight from John Veihmeyer and Henry Keizer (via a couple of tipsters). Before we get to the message from The Gipper and Hank, you should be warned that if your excitement was piqued by the “Next Level” movie-trailer video, you might – MIGHT! – not be that enthused with the actual “Next Level.”

With that said, let’s turn it over to the boys:

Welcome to the Next Level: Our High-Performance Culture
A Message from John Veihmeyer and Henry Keizer

It’s no secret that we operate in an increasingly cve environment, one in which our clients—both internal and external—are demanding more from us every day. More than ever, they need the skills and services we can bring, as long as we continue to raise the bar on our own performance and add more value and insight than ever before. To meet these demands and take full advantage of the opportunities ahead of us, we must be committed to fostering a High-Performance Culture, one in which we have the best people, with the skills and determination to deliver above and beyond.

If you managed to make it through that paragraph, you’re probably queasy already. The bad news is, it gets worse.

By now you’ve likely heard about our focus on high-performance culture. But chances are you still have some questions about exactly what it is, as well as what it means for you and for the firm as a whole. That’s why we’ve created The Next Level, a Web-based orientation for all partners and employees.

This mandatory 1 CPE credit self-study program will help you to:

• Articulate the key elements of our High-Performance Culture (HPC) initiative, including why it is critical to our firm’s success and your individual success
• Describe what the firm is doing to drive HPC, as well as what’s expected of you
• Identify and model the key attributes of high performers to elevate your own performance
• Effectively use our streamlined performance development process
• Give and receive feedback more effectively
• Most important, you’ll learn how high-performance culture will help you to share in our collective firm success, build skills for tomorrow, and have pride in being part of something extraordinary.
• The deadline for completion of The Next Level is July 7. (Note: All partners and employees are required to participate in this self-study program.)

Thanks in advance for your participation! And keep in mind that this is only the jumping-off point… you’ll be hearing a lot more about our HPC efforts in the weeks and months ahead.

Okay Klynveldians, I don’t know about you all but I’m still not sure if I understand what the “Next Level” is. What is clear is there is nothing in this email about loyalty bonuses, allegations of gender discrimination or the opportunity to wear jeans (given that you’ve got a five-dollar bill in your pocket).

BUT! There is something about a “high-performance culture,” which gets its own acronym so that might be the “Next Level.” Then there’s stuff about a web-based orienation, feedback, streamlined something or other and MANDATORY PARTICIPATION FOR EVERYONE (this means you, 30+ years partner who can barely turn on your laptop). Granted, I’ve been out of the HoK for quite some time so maybe I’m misinterpreting John and Hank’s prose but this “Next Level” seems like the same “level” only with a few more hoops to jump through and definitely more emails from J&H that may or may not explain how this will “foster a high performance culture.”

If you’re more hip to this, please enlighten everyone. But if you’re confused, annoyed or mortified with disappointment you can share those feelings too.

Compensation Watch ’10: KPMG Puts Some Ballpark Figures Out There

Since it’s Monday in late July (and many people probably had one old fashioned too many last night) we figured this day would have gotten off to a slow start. Well, we’re in luck! KPMG comes roaring out of the gate today with a little compensation update from none othercall me Rudy” Veihmeyer and Henry Keizer.

The news? Well, the promotions bonuses have caused some belly aching so the boys thought they would give you a sneak peak at what you can expect come merit increase time:

Update on Our Plans for 2010 Compensation
A Message from John Veihmeyer and Henry Keizer
8:19 AM ET, July 26, 2010

In April, we told you that there would be compensation increases for the great majority of our people and, assuming KPMG meets its FY10 plan, higher bonuses than last year for EP performers, and bonuses for higher performing SP employees as well. Now, as we head into the fourth quarter, we would like to provide you with an update on this matter. As you view this information, please keep in mind that compensation increases are determined on an individual basis, and reflect each employee’s role, skills, performance, geography, and experience, among other factors.

· Merit and Promotion Increases – For employees who are not being promoted, we expect SP performers will receive merit increases that will range from the low to the mid-single digits; EP performers will receive increases up to the high-single digits and in rare cases double digits.

In addition to any merit increases, employees who have been promoted should expect to receive a promotion increase of approximately 5 percent, with one exception: newly promoted CSD Managers should expect to receive a promotion increase of approximately 10 percent.

· Variable Compensation – The FY10 pool for variable compensation will be more than double what it was last year. This means that EP-rated employees will generally receive bonuses that are significantly higher than those of last year. In addition, approximately the top half of our SP performers will also receive variable compensation awards.

Please keep in mind this information is preliminary. Final compensation decisions will be made based upon our full-year results, so the ranges above could be adjusted based upon our firm’s performance between now and September 30. But, consistent with our commitment to keeping the lines of communication open, we wanted to share with you our best current forecast about these important matters.

In line with our compensation philosophy and our focus on a high-performance culture, we remain committed to sharing the rewards of the firm’s financial performance with our employees and providing a competitive total compensation package that differentiates exceptional performers with superior rewards. As we have said before, the strong foundation we have built within the firm, as well as our near- and longer-term business prospects, make us very optimistic. But to finish this year strong and begin FY11 on a positive track, it is critical that we continue to drive a high-performance culture by doing our best work, providing the highest-quality service to our clients, growing our business, and operating efficiently.

Thanks again for your continued hard work and for all you do to help our firm succeed!

So now that you have that to chew on for your last Monday in July, feel free to discuss the “low to the mid-single digits” for the strong and “high-single digits and in rare cases double digits” for the exceptional. And if you’ve got thoughts on the variable comp pool, you can go there too, if you like. Keep us updated.

KPMG’s Investment in Phil Mickelson Is Working Out Pretty Well, Sayeth KPMG’s Leadership

We just assumed that we had heard the last of the cubicle-side chats with KPMG’s leadership but lo and behold, this morning we find yet another convo with KPMG’s three amigos – T Fly, JVeih, Keizer Soze – sitting in the mailbag.

And yes, Phil comes up.


KPMGconversation

Okay, some thoughts –

In response to Inquisitor #1, Johnnie V. says “our goal is to make sure to not sell services into a company” but then qualifies by saying, “[Making] sure we’re bring the full suite of..services to help them deal with those issues and those problems.” In other words, there is a very fine line between hustling clients for more business and actually serving them to suit their needs.

Re: “Mid-market” – This can be summed up by saying: KPMG is having the most success winning smaller clients from the next tier firms.

And finally to the most important question – Inquisitor #3 thinks Phil is great and all but for the love of everything that is good and holy, are there any other plans to get the name out there? This Five Guys obsession has him worried.

Since Tim and Phil are BFFs, he’ll take this one…except he doesn’t say anything that really means anything. JVeih jumps in (no doubt give him the “WTF are you talking about?” look) to say that KPMG’s Mean Girls strategy is working and the firm is getting far more attention from CFOs than it was just one year ago. The rest of the Big 4 have plateaued and Phil has been instrumental in the glad-handing and back-slapping efforts.

KPMG’s New Paperless Audit Is Going to Be the Best Thing Since Paper

[caption id="attachment_10529" align="alignright" width="150" caption="Paperless!"][/caption]

How about one more convo with the KPMG leadership this week? As one commenter mused earlier, the lack of past CEO spreadsheet-side chats were too few and far between so we figure we’re doing a you a favor by this passing ��������������������round, John Veihmeyer and Henry Keizer kick around lowballing fees, outsourcing and the firm’s new paperless audit technology:

Inquisitor 1: Can you talk a little bit more specifically about what we’re doing right now to compete with firms that are reducing their fees so drastically that you have to wonder how they are even covering costs?

Keizer: To me, the first and foremost guiding principle is – make sure you’re giving the most absolute best client service. I think to the extent that you do have great service, we’ve got to be able to have very transparent and open discussions with our clients as to what are our economics? Where are we? What is the competitive information? What is market pricing, as opposed to the offer that came in unsolicited? And find a way to meet the objectives of what we need, and what our client needs.

Maybe we will, in fact, have to drop a price in, let’s say, our audit offering. But then are able to say, but why can’t we maintain the same or higher KPMG spend? Let’s look at who’s doing your tax compliance work. Let’s look at who’s doing your SAS70? Those types of discussions do allow us to compete successfully without having a case where it’s just about price.

Not sure who transcribed this thing but it’ll work for a Friday. First off, Inquisitor numero uno is obviously under the impression that KPMG would never lowball its fees. Even though other people have suggested exactly that.

Keizer Soze then reminds his little friend that it’s really not about the money, it’s about providing the best client service imaginable (sacrificing life, limb and/or dignity) which will result in more work for the firm. It’s a self-perpetuating cycle, really.

Inquisitor 2: Is there more plans to outsource positions in the U.S. to India?

Veihmeyer: I think as you look across the entire scope of our activities, and I think the most important one is – how do we serve our global clients – making sure that we are competitive in the marketplace and can think about how we execute a lot of our engagements differently to be successful. I think we will continue to look for opportunities to source talent, source resources, source skills, anywhere in the world it makes sense. I don’t see it as exchanging a position here for something offshore.

I think we see this as a very key strategy to make sure we are as competitive as we can possibly be in the marketplace—which I think will have one primary impact to the U.S. firm and that is create more opportunities for our people here. And why is that the case? Because we will win more work, we will be competitive in situations that we otherwise wouldn’t be competitive in, if we didn’t have that capability. And that’s what creates opportunities for our people.

In a word: Yes. As for why – Dammit, we’re a $20 billion firm (but not really, we’re actually a network of independent firms operating under a global cooperative. Ask Tim Flynn; he’ll tell you) and our competitors play hard ball. We’ve got to create other jobs overseas to keep up with those guys. Will that affect you? No chance, Blanche! If it does, it just means your life will be infinitely better because KPMG has business it didn’t have before.

Inquisitor 3: eAudIT – how is it going? What challenges have we faced? And how are clients, employees, and recruits receiving the deployment?

Keizer: e-AudIT is on track for deployment. We released the software in April, the 2010 version. Training schedules will be rolling out over the next several months.

It is the tool that accomplishes three major things. One, it allows us to do things more efficiently. It moves us from a work paper format to a work flow.

And lastly, there’s always been a great appetite of our professionals, how do I tap into the knowledge that KPMG has? e-AudIT is the platform now, to actually make that knowledge available to our professionals.

I think e-AudIT puts us in front of our competitors in terms of a platform that’s truly the best that’s out there. I believe when we look back, it will be the single most important ingredient to us providing the type of service, meeting our regulatory and professional requirements, and having our people feel good at how we have enabled them to really be high performance professionals.

[Jesus, easy with the rapid fire, Inquisitor tres; Hank isn’t a speed listener]. Paperless auditing has moved into KPMG lock, stock and barrel. We’re only 10 years into the 21st Century and we’re ready to start fixing bugs in this thing for the next ten years.

It’s far superior to anything the other firms have because you’ve been training on it over in Monty and we haven’t heard a single complaint. Someday you’ll be able to tell your grandstaff that this was the absolutely most exciting time to be at KPMG because that was when things got serious.

KPMG’s Leadership Is Not Determined By Rock-Paper-Scissors

KPMG Leadership has been on a communication rampage this month, answering questions from inquiring Klynveldians about the firm’s performance and compensation.

This time around, thd by COO Henry Keizer) discuss their roles in the firm and the election process because, presumably, it might make for a good ice breaker at your upcoming Memorial Day BBQ.

Inquisitor 1: Congratulations on your new roles – Chairman and Deputy Chairman. What can you tell us about the process that you go through in having that occur? And what’s the differentiation between your two roles?

Flynn: The board has a responsibility to have a succession planning process in place to elect the Chairman and Deputy Chairman. That is then put to an up or down vote of the partners for ratification. Chairman and Deputy Chairman are – today – a five-year term jointly and then a three-year second term, should they so choose. The board elects them to a second term.

John and I were elected in June of 2005, for a five-year term. I was elected as Global Chairman on October 1, 2007. I came to the conclusion through the fall that I really couldn’t do both roles full time.

In recognizing that in a complex, changing world today, we really need a full-time U.S. Chairman and Deputy Chairman to take care of what has to get done here in the world that we’re in—and as well, we’ll talk more about it, but we have to evolve the global firm, a $20 billion organization – shouldn’t there be a full-time executive team that wakes up every day on how to carry out the responsibilities of a $20 billion organization?

Veihmeyer: In terms of specific responsibilities – as Chairman, I’m the CEO. Henry chairs the Management Committee and a lot of what we talked about in terms of executing effectively and making sure that we are – from an operational standpoint – a very high-performance organization, Henry will lead through his role as Chief Operating Officer.

In other words – the process at KPMG isn’t exactly the electoral college. It’s basically a fight until the (near) death and the winner gets the thumbs up/thumbs down, Gladiator style, from the Board. Then they shake hands, slap each other on the ass, etc. and get back to work.

For this past cycle it does sound like T Fly was a little burned out from the globe trotting and keeping the peace Stateside so it was natural for JVeih to step up to the big chair for the U.S. after the terms expired. A $20 billion company is nothing to sneeze at so we thought that maybe we should start taking this “global firm” thing seriously (even though we’re all independent of each other and are legally not one firm) and let somebody tackle it full time.

Inquisitor 2: How will the succession process work within the next three months?

Veihmeyer: In terms of the specific things that have to take place, obviously we have some things around the leadership team that we have to get in place. Henry comes out of his role leading our Audit practice. So we will get all that in place as we lead up to early June, what team will be in place as we go forward post-June 10th, leading the firm. Henry…

Keizer: The transition that Tim and John described sets us up in a very good position to make sure as we move through fiscal 2010, we won’t be focused internally. It will allow us not only to continue to build on the foundation that we’ve built over the past several years, but more importantly, to really stay focused on making sure when we look back on 2010, it will be a year where everyone could say we’re on our way to recovery. The things that we all want, in terms of a more vibrant business, more rewards for our people, are all beginning to come back into the picture, and that that’s what we’re all committed to, I’m sure.

We’re taking applications for Hank’s position. You have to be able to stick to talking points, send out a mass amount of emails (via admin assistant natch) and smile a lot. Oh, and you can’t gush when Phil shows up for photo ops; you’ve got to keep it cool.

John Veihmeyer Doesn’t Mind Repeating Himself if It’s About Raises at KPMG

While some people are still sweating out to hear if they’re part of the new manager class, John Veihmeyer and Henry Keizer did more casual chatting with the troops and this time it was about everyone’s favorite topic to bitch about – compensation.

Specifically, somee asking about raises for FY ’10 and 401k match. Strange thing is, JV has already addressed the issue of KPMG raises in a previous communiqué by saying:

“[B]y year-end, we fully expect that the pickup in market and business conditions will drive compensation increases for the vast majority of our people. Also, assuming we meet our plan, as we are on track to do, our goal is to enhance our variable compensation pool from last year—meaning higher bonuses than last year for EP performers as well as bonuses for deserving SP performers.”


Good thing he doesn’t mind repeating himself:

Inquisitor #1: I was just wondering, if it’s likely that employees will get raises this year?

Veihmeyer: We are very optimistic at this point that that is exactly what’s going to happen. We all need to stay really engaged in what’s going on in the marketplace at this point to make sure that the second six months of our fiscal year also tracks the plan that we put in place. If we do that, we are very committed to sharing the rewards appropriately across KPMG.

As we assess the market right now – means that the vast majority of our people will be getting compensation increases this year. We are just as committed to increasing that variable compensation pool to the maximum extent we can reflective of how our results play out over the next six months.

Keizer: And in terms of variable compensation at the EP level that will translate into larger rewards and our deserving SP performers will also receive compensation rewards.

I am confident – based on what we see out in the marketplace, the foundation we have within the firm, the indicators of economic vibrance that are coming back – that we will be able to reward our people better and to be able to restore some of the things that we had to eliminate in a very measured and prudent way.

And John Veihmeyer was just wondering why you didn’t read his previous statement (or websites where it might appear) on the matter. Since V seems like a nice guy he managed to say what he said before only this time without saying “Yes” outright. Whether the absence of this explicit confirmation is a cause for concern can only be determined by you. Hank chimes in about the bonuses, presumably so he doesn’t feel awkward (at least that’s how we picture it).

So what about the 401k match? Is that returning to pre-financial apocalyptic levels?

Inquisitor #2: You mentioned earlier that we recently brought back the Standing Ovation award into the Encore program. Can we expect to see a change in our 401K match?

Veihmeyer: With an eye toward maximizing the immediate financial rewards to our people – to a level that we all can feel good about – we have some goals and objectives around base and variable compensation that in our view will take precedence over 401K as we reinstate and are able to shift those rewards. But it’s something that if the circumstances change and our ability to reinstate some of those things evolve, we will continue to look at it.

In a word – No. First things first you rubes – We’ve going to get every single Klynveldian feeling great about their immediate financial rewards. Until that is accomplished, your retirement will have to wait. The time frame of “we all feel good” was not given.