Graduate Programmes: What is Tax, Pensions and Legal Services?

A career in Tax involves working closely with a range of clients, developing a deep understanding of their commercial issues and finding approaches that make a real difference to their bottom line. As you’ll often be tackling challenges that are at the heart of client organisations, it’s your opportunity to develop commercial insight and valuable technical skills, whilst studying for recognised professional qualifications.

KPMG’s Tax, Pensions and Legal Services practice is an excellent starting point for a successful business career, whether in company-focused services (such as Corporate Tax and Indirect Tax) or people-focused services (such as Private Client Advice, Global Mobility Services and Pensions). There’s no one type of person that succeeds within Tax. Everyone who works here has been selected for their individual merits. It’s our differences that bring us together and contributes to our achievements. 

To learn more about your role and our current options in Tax and Pensions, explore our programmes below.


As a constantly changing and increasingly high profile field, Tax can offer a surprisingly broad range of career paths to ambitious graduates. Our Tax team works with a wide range of organisations and individuals, helping them to implement the tax approaches that best suit their needs. That’s why there’s no one type of person who’ll succeed here. It’s an incredibly dynamic and successful area that needs a diverse range of personalities, characters and outlooks.

With such a wide-ranging remit, Tax can offer a variety of challenging and high profile projects as part of a stimulating graduate career – and our programme is an excellent foundation for that. Tackling challenges at the heart of client organisations, you’ll develop a broad commercial understanding whilst gaining valuable technical skills and professional qualifications. 

Our Tax Graduate programmes affords you with the opportunity to explore the different areas of the practice before choosing where to specialise.

At a glance

Business Area Tax
Programme length Intensive CA and ITP Programme: Nine-month technical training, within a three-year contact.
Empowered ACA and CTA Programme: 39 months.
Qualifications you'll work for Intensive Programme: Dual ICAS CA and Tax Professional Qualification.
Empowered Programme: Dual ACA and CTA Professional Qualification.
Location Nationwide
Entry requirements Yes

Training and development

The training and development of our tax professionals is critical to the future success of our business.

We have several graduate programmes for tax, including our bespoke ICAS CA/ITP Intensive Dual Qualification programme, integrated programmes for the ICAEW/CTA Joint ACA/CTA dual qualification Empowered programme and the CA-ITP integrated link programme. The routes available will depend on which office you join.

All programmes offer you the opportunity to obtain both a chartered accountancy and tax qualification and will pave your way to success for your future careers. You should not underestimate how much of your first three years will be spent studying. Be sure that you are joining a firm that takes your development as seriously as you do.

Our dedicated Professional Qualification and Accreditation (PQA) team will play a pivotal role in your development as a tax professional, both as a graduate and throughout your career.

Investment Advisory

Our Investment Advisory team is an area of rapid growth within our Pensions Practice. Providing invaluable services to Pensions Trustees and Corporate clients, we advise on a diverse range of investment-related subjects, including asset allocation, financial risk management and fund manager selection.

Entrepreneurial in spirit, our team’s diversity helps to encourage innovative, yet practical, ideas for our clients. It’s the mix of personalities, characters, beliefs and outlooks that helps drive our commercial edge. For graduates, it’s the chance to take the first step towards becoming an expert in the field.

Challenging and rewarding, working in Investment Advisory requires strong communication skills and financial acumen, paired with the ability to take responsibility right from the beginning. Graduates here have the ambition and confidence to take the initiative and develop their own investment ideas.

At a glance

Business area Pensions - Investment Advisory
Qualifications you'll work for Charter Holder of the Chartered Financial Analyst (CFA) qualification or Fellow of the Institute of Actuaries
Location Nationwide
Entry requirements Yes

Training and development

As an Investment Advisory graduate, you’ll study for the Chartered Financial Analyst (CFA) exams or for the actuarial exams to qualify as a Fellow of the Institute and Faculty of Actuaries. We recognise the challenges and time constraints involved in balancing work and study commitments, so we’ll support you with study allowance and tutorials. If studying for the CFA qualification, you’ll also need to complete the Investment Management Certificate (IMC). For more information on the Actuarial, CFA, and IMC exams, please click on the links below:




Japan Practice in Tax

As more and more companies operate in global markets, the demand for tax professionals with an international outlook has increased too - and KPMG’s global network of member firms is at the forefront of meeting this demand. With a team of specialists in this area, Japan Practice in Tax focuses on assisting our UK firm’s Japanese clients on the issues that could affect their European operations.

Combining hands-on client work and professional study, our Japan Practice in Tax programme is designed for ambitious graduates like you; keen to gain the international experience you need to support your professional development.

As well as enjoying access to the same high quality training and opportunities as our other Tax Graduates, you’ll concentrate on a number of our firm's Japanese clients that have a major European presence. Based in our London offices, you’ll be involved in a broad range of activity – including assisting in the day-to-day running of the Japan Practice client portfolio, operating a compliance programme involving personal tax returns and tax advice services for international assignees, and liaising with other departments and offices in KPMG’s global network.
To join this programme, it’s essential that you have Japanese language skills and an appreciation of Japanese culture.

At a glance

Business area Tax - Japan Practice in Tax
Programme length Nine-month technical training, within a three-year contact
Qualifications you'll work for A dual ICAS CA and Tax Professional Qualification
Location London
Entry requirements Yes. Plus Japanese language ability (JLPT Level N2, or equivalent)

Training and development

All our new tax graduate entrants study a dual tax and accountancy qualification. You will be joining our bespoke CA-ITP Intensive Programme, which covers 12 courses and examinations over a 10 month intensive training period run from our London South Quay office.

This programme will afford you with all of your technical knowledge and expertise in advance of joining the business. It’s a chance for you to focus on the training element of your qualification without interruption of work. It is supported by a wide range of mechanisms that will be applied by your tuition provider or KPMG when you require them. However, the intensity of the programme means it will be fast-paced and will demand dedication.

In the remaining two years of your training contract you can then concentrate on building up a fantastic range of work experience with only your case study courses and exam to complete. Our dedicated Professional Qualification and Accreditation (PQA) team will play a pivotal role in your development as a tax professional, both as a graduate trainee and throughout your career.

Pensions Actuarial

People are at the heart of our business. As a global organisation we celebrate our differences and seek out the individual potential in everyone. And when clients value their people as much as we do, pensions tend to be firmly on their agenda. So whilst the word 'pensions' may conjure up images of retiring and taking things easy, a career in this demanding sector is anything but sedate.

For many organisations and Trustee groups, a detailed pensions’ strategy is one of the cornerstones of financial health. Very much a hot topic in public debate, the pensions industry is the subject of governmental scrutiny, new legislation and a high profile field where you’ll develop a wide range of consultancy skills

A career in Pensions requires both a high level of numeracy and communication skills – as well as the enthusiasm and drive needed to gain professional qualifications and succeed in a fast moving market. Whilst it won’t be easy, this Graduate Programme offers the chance to build a strong foundation in a fascinating industry.

At a glance

Business area Pensions - Pensions Actuarial
Qualifications you'll work for Study towards becoming a Fellow of the Institute and Faculty of Actuaries.
Location Nationwide
Entry requirements Yes

Training and development

As a graduate in our Pensions Actuarial Team, you’ll enjoy a range of training and development opportunities to study towards becoming a Fellow of the Institute and Faculty of Actuaries. So, as well as study support and guidance to help you on your way to becoming a qualified Actuary, you’ll benefit from:

  • On-the-job training on a regular basis
  • A graduate induction event
  • Specific technical and softer skills training on a national basis
  • Regular technical training and opportunities to develop wider market knowledge throughout your career within pensions
  • A wide range of instructor-led and self-study courses through the KPMG Business School, including consultancy and softer skills
  • A buddy from your first day to help you settle in
  • A Study Mentor who helps advise and guide students through the study and exam process
  • A Performance Manager to support you with your progress, performance and any work or HR-related issues.

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