What does it do?

It might sound like a versatile type of wood, but in reality PKF is one of the UK's leading firms of accountants and business advisers, and also linked to a worldwide network of partner firms. Not one of the Big Four accountancy names, the firm has particular expertise advising small and medium sized companies, with strengths in several sectors, including charities, hotels, medical firms, property and construction and technology. There's also a sporting string to the bow: PKF has worked for Liverpool and Celtic football clubs, and handled the financial affairs of some of motor racing's big names. PKF was adopted as the firm's name in 2000, the constituent letters coming from three founding fathers: William Pannell, who started W.H.Pannell & Co, in London in 1869, Errol Kerr, of the New York firm Harris, Kerr & Co, formed in 1911, and William J. Forster, whose firm joined up with the Kerr business in 1933.

Vital Statistics:

PKF International has more than 12,800 staff in over 100 countries. In the UK, there are 1,500 partners in 23 offices.

The Office:

The headquarters are in Farringdon Road, in the City of London. Regional offices are evenly spread around the country.

Is this you?

This year about 80 graduates are being taken on, all destined to train as accountants. PKF looks for a 2:1 in any subject, and what it calls the ability to build relationships in a client-facing role.

The recruitment process:

If your application, at www.pkf.co.uk, gets over the academic hurdles, you'll be asked to take an online psychometric test, with numerical and verbal components. First interviews then sift candidates into those invited to an assessment day, which includes a case study, second interview and "social lunch," the aim here being to allow you time to decide if the firm's for you. During the three-year training period, graduates are exposed to a wide variety of businesses. They may be involved in accounts preparation work, or audit assignments, which typically last up to two weeks. In parallel, there's study towards the appropriate professional accountancy qualification. Graduates start work at a variety of offices, with the largest concentration in London.

Top Dollar?

No details here, but PKF says it keeps in close contact with other similar sized firms, and "tends to offer the market rate."

Beam me up Scotty?

After three or four years, graduate recruits should be looking towards promotion to supervisor or other management levels, or perhaps aiming for a spell in an overseas office.

Who's the boss?

Managing partner, Martin Goodchild, is as good an advertisement for PKF's recruitment performance as you're likely to find. He's been with the firm since he trained as an accountant more than a quarter of a century ago.

Little known fact:

PKF must know more about the hotel industry than the hotel industry. It's got the biggest hotel performance database in Europe, and has been handling hotels' books for nearly a century.