Like a puzzle, it takes many different pieces fitting together to create a successful CPA. At KMSS, we offer the tools necessary to help our students reach this milestone.
Balancing work, CPA PEP, and your personal life can be stressful. Our CPA training programs helps to alleviate these stresses so that our students are successful in the CPA program and in their careers.
The Recruiting Process
When can I apply?
When we have an opening, we post it on our site on the current openings page. When posted, we invite all qualified applicants to apply. If there is not an opening, we will try to post an estimated date for when the next set of open positions will be posted.
When can I meet the firm?
Each September, a KMSS recruiting team goes to a number of universities in Alberta to meet students who have either just graduated with their Bachelor of Commerce Degree and are looking for full-time articling positions at a CPA firm, or are in their third year of studies and looking for a co-op position.
Our annual recruiting targets are based on our anticipated requirements to continue meeting the needs of our clients. KMSS’ campus recruiting activities in September and October each year include holding information sessions, participating in campus events, and attending the “Meet Your Employer” event. We strive for excellence. We look for students with a strong work ethic, positive attitude, fundamental skill set, and a desire to serve others.
Throughout the year, we also invite candidates to tour our workplace and meet team members on-site. Our door is always open and we always welcome the opportunity to meet new prospective team members.
Compensation and Benefits
- Banked overtime for study leave
- Three weeks’ vacation
- Eight flex days a year from May to December
- 100% of health & dental care package premiums covered
- 50% of the cost of health and fitness club memberships up to $600 per year.
- Up to $100 per month towards the cost of parking or a Calgary transit pass
- Core hours (9am-3pm & 9am-4pm in busy season)
- Competitive salary
We Provide the Tools to Help You Succeed in the CPA PEP Program
We offer a comprehensive professional support program. We promote a learning environment and we want everyone from our partners to our students to help each other grow and develop.
How We Support You:
- Paid CPA PEP registration fees, module fees, and annual dues
- 50% of the Densmore CPA CFE preparation program
- 100% banked time
- One paid study day for each PEP module
- Six paid study days for every CFE attempt CPA & Career mentors
- Start-to-finish files related to CPA modules
- Exposure to audit, assurance, compilation, and tax related engagements
Giving hands-on experience to our CPA candidates is important to us. We believe it greatly enhances learning, so we make sure our CPA candidates get maximum experience by working on files from start to finish.
CPA and Career Mentors
Everyone at KMSS has access to the firm’s mentoring program. As a student, you choose a mentor from among any of our certified CPA mentors. Your mentor will help guide you through the CPA program and will be available to you for any questions you may have both professionally and personally. We offer two paid mentor lunches per year where you and your mentor can discuss your progress in a setting outside of the office.
The mentoring relationship provides opportunities to discuss your career path, the nature of the work you’re doing, the challenges you’re encountering, and your personal development. KMSS’ mentoring program is combined with the CPA mentoring program and continues after you receive your designation. We believe it is important to have someone in the organization that can offer support and guidance throughout your career.
Your mentor is committed to offering you support, guidance, and coaching throughout the relationship. If you are a CPA student, your mentor will also help you go through the CPA PEP process and provide individual guidance in studying for the CFE.
CPA PEP Support
As well as having PEP courses paid for in addition to their regular compensation, our students also have access to Partners and Managers for coaching and mentoring. We provide flexibility and a balanced workload to students to accommodate their learning and development.
As one CPA student described it, taking the PEP program and working for the firm provided great rewards:
“PEP teaches concepts and practical knowledge that can be applied in my day-to-day professional duties. Once I found the balance between working a full workweek and averaging 15-20 hours a week of homework, I could manage the workload and still have time to spend with my friends and relax. The support I received from the firm was very helpful in coping with all of the demands on my time.”
KMSS offers tremendous opportunity – for students to become CPAs and for team members to become Managers. A number of our current Partners are homegrown, having gone through the training requirements with KMSS, progressing through management positions, and onward into the partnership. We are a full-service CPA firm that provides not only accounting services but complete assurance (including auditing of publicly-traded companies) and business advisory services.
This degree of internal opportunity stems from KMSS’ overall success and growth over more than 35 years. We are a stable, independent CPA firm that has not only stood the test of time but has grown substantially. We know our business well and we understand the sectors and industries that we serve. We are a client-driven firm that builds our services around the needs of our clients. We strive for excellence and take a genuine interest in our clients’ businesses. Our clients appreciate that we do more than just give advice. They can rely on us to respond to their specific needs, i.e. help them make the best deals, locate the financing, and implement plans successfully.
KMSS is a registered training office for CPA Candidates. We are happy to accommodate students in the Pre-Approved Route looking to become auditors and obtain their CPA designation through the traditional External Audit path as well as students looking to obtain their CPA through the Non-External Audit path (assurance, compilations, and taxation). Either way, we will provide you with the depth of experience and support you will need to be successful in the program and become a Chartered Professional Accountant. Each CPA student must register with the CPA Western School of Business (CPAWSB) and successfully complete six CPA PEP modules. Upon doing so, they are eligible to write the Common Final Exam (CFE).
Upon completing six PEP modules, passing the CFE, and completing the 30-month experience model, the CPA student is awarded his or her designation as a Chartered Professional Accountant by the Institute of Chartered Professional Accountants of Alberta.
Having passed this crucial career milestone and meeting or exceeding KMSS’ performance standards, the new CPA is then eligible to be promoted to Assistant Manager one year after passing the UFE. After two years as an Assistant Manager and upon demonstrating the level of knowledge and ability that we expect at KMSS, the Assistant Manager is promoted to Manager. Exceptional individuals who demonstrate the required skill set can be accelerated through the process and be promoted to Manager sooner. We do also recognize that not all team members will want to be Partners and support those who wish to remain Managers for the duration of their careers with KMSS.
A Team Experience
At KMSS, our articling students have the opportunity to work on both of our teams. Each team provides exposure to the different facets of accounting as well as the opportunity to try each one before deciding on what accounting area you want to specialize in.
Team A is our audit focused team. On team A, you will gain exposure to audits, reviews, notice to reader, and T2 only engagements.
Owner-managed businesses are Team B’s main focus and you will be exposed to reviews, notice to reader engagements, personal, and corporate tax.
Exposure to All Types of Files
We believe our CPA candidates will have a higher chance of success on the CFE when exposed to all aspects of accounting. Our teams provide our employees the opportunity to take on a variety of files and each CPA candidate will get the opportunity to work on reviews, NTR’s, audits, and personal tax engagements.
We work closely with our clients. Through direct communication with our clients, our CPA candidates learn more about our clients’ businesses and how to best serve their needs.
Open Door Policy
By grouping our partners, managers, and professional staff into teams, more collaborative and productive relationships are developed between team members. Our organizational structure provides new team members the opportunity to work with all of our Partners and Managers, and delivers access to expertise in accounting, tax, and business advisory services.
At KMSS, we want you to feel like and be a valued member of our firm, while exposing you to the various facets of accounting through the different engagements you will encounter.
Frequently Asked Questions
We truly believe we offer the very best opportunity for the ambitious, business-minded student. Below we address some of the ideas that prospective articling students have voiced about working at KMSS.
Will I get any big audit experience? I’m concerned I won’t get any big-corporate-client experience.
Big audits are not our business but do not be misled. We audit publicly-traded companies and several of our clients generate annual revenues of $30 million to $80 million. Our audit partners have decades of experience and a wealth of knowledge to pass on.
Will a mid-size firm limit my future career opportunities?
Our belief is that a mid-size firm is a great place to begin a career and the experience you will gain will provide a strong base for a long and successful career in public practice or industry. Each of our CPA candidates receive the opportunity to experience personal tax returns, audits of all sizes, reviews, and notice to readers. Our student team members work on files from many different industries and the experience provides for a very well-rounded education. The CPA designation is a very marketable one, especially combined with the experience you will gain at KMSS. Your role as a business advisor will prepare you well for controllership and management positions with virtually any size of company.
Is it best to start at a big firm?
Our focus is on small to medium-sized entrepreneurial businesses. These types of clients provide the opportunity for students to be involved in all aspects of their business, from compliance and tax planning to management advisory services. We believe this ability for you to participate in providing value-added services to an extensive range of clients in numerous sectors results in second to none training and experience.
Is your total compensation program competitive?
Our policy is to remain competitive with the other mid-sized firms in Calgary while maintaining a more flexible work environment in the process.
Is it possible to pursue a work term abroad like the international firms offer?
While we do not have a formal overseas exchange program, we are part of worldwide network of firms called DFK International. This could provide opportunity to work in one of the 254 DFK member offices among 72 countries.