The 2015 Best Firms to Work For: EY

bob patton

12. EY 

Headquarters: London
Billable Consultants: 20,000+
u0007Client Industries Served: Virtually all
Consulting Service Lines: Multi-Service

It’s been two years since EY launched its new brand identity, with a purpose-driven mandate of “building a better working world.” The mandate arose out of the firm’s core values and have been tremendously resonant with both clients and employees, says Bob Patton, EY’s Americas Advisory Vice Chairman.

“So, on one level, we know who we are and we take inspiration from our credo,” he says. “Being named to Consulting’s Best Firms to Work For list in consecutive years is an extraordinary affirmation of our values and aspirations, one that we take great pride in receiving. It is also a testament to our relatively new offering of purpose-led transformation, which should further help the marketplace recognize its merits.”

Patton says EY is experiencing unprecedented growth, adding 65,000 people in the past year alone. “We have the foremost globally integrated advisory practice. We are working at the forefront of emerging practices, forging new ground on several fronts,” Patton says. “To be a part of such a vibrant undertaking has great appeal to our employees, who feel a part of something much greater than themselves as well as having great career-development potential.”

And when you ask Patton what sets the firm apart from others, he says: “No question, it’s our culture. EY has long had a distinctively collaborative, customer-centric approach. We hear from new hires of considerable experience, as well as those who are returning to EY: it just feels different here,” he says. “When you overlay that with our recent model of being purposeful and everyone has a shared vision of helping our clients and communities achieve a better working world for themselves, it has a very profound effect on everyone involved.”

To that end, Patton says the firm’s Culture Recognition program has been “extremely empowering.” In this program, employees are bestowed with a “culture coin” in recognition for living the firm’s values. The coins are awarded by others who have already been recognized with a coin: each time someone receives a coin, he or she can ‘pay it forward’ to someone else who exemplifies the EY culture.

The culture, Patton says, is unique among firms of EY’s size. “Our people realize that to be able to work within an inclusively diverse culture, while operating on a global scale with multinational clients that provide complex challenges—this is a remarkable and a highly motivating opportunity to enjoy their work while developing their full potential.”

Looking ahead, Patton says the opportunity to embrace disruption is tremendously exciting by “helping our clients be proactive so that they can stay ahead of the wave of constantly emerging change. When you work in an environment of disruption, it forces you to innovate and make bold, but well-reasoned, moves.”

Q&A: What’s your top priority over the next 12 months?

Bob Patton, EY’s Americas Advisory Vice Chairman, says: “Our firm has immense focus on the overarching objective and recently developed offering of purpose-led transformation, which we introduced at the World Economic Forum (WEF) this year to overwhelmingly enthusiastic response. In concert with the WEF introduction, we launched the Beacon Institute, which is intent on exploring the science of purpose. Then there is the latest phase of our brand development and activation, which dovetails nicely with purpose-led transformation: ‘The better the question. The better the answer. The better the world works.’ ”

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