KPMG appoints young professionals to people advisory board

21 December 2023 Consultancy.com.au 3 min. read
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With audit quality and ethics becoming an increasingly touchy subject in Australia, Big Four firm KPMG has assembled a team of young professionals to serve as practice advisory board members.

The Australian branch of Big Four professional services firm KPMG has installed a People Advisory Board for its national audit & assurance division (APAB), its thirteen members drawn from Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane and Perth and representing a variety of functions.

The advisory board is mostly composed of young professionals with less than five years at KPMG, whose role will be to help shape the future of the practice.

KPMG - Audit and Assurance People Advisory Board

Among those selected is Sydney-based analyst Georgia Warner, who only joined the firm as a University of Technology Sydney external audit graduate in January after completing earlier internships at Deloitte and PwC. It’s not however Warner’s first experience on an internal committee, having also served as an accounting program student representative at UTS and youth advisory council member with Tennis NSW.

“It’s an absolute privilege to have been selected to help shape the future of Audit & Assurance at KPMG,” Warner stated on LinkedIn. “I am committed to fostering an inclusive, supportive and growth-oriented workplace culture that aligns to KPMG’s LEAP strategy of Leadership, Energy, Aspiration and Performance. Thus, joining APAB empowers me to advocate for innovative change and make a positive and sustainable impact on our firm.”

Warner was one of five representatives appointed to the APAB from KPMG’s Sydney practice, alongside external audit senior and assistant managers Laurens Erich and Oliver Smeallie, data analytics and audit innovation consultant Brandon Sia, and Chantelle Mayo, who works as a senior consultant within KPMG’s human rights & social impact division Banarra – which was founded by chief purpose officer Richard Boele.

Warner’s APAB office colleagues have all been with KPMG in Australia for two years or less, although Erich previously spent the best part of a decade with the firm in the Netherlands before arriving in Australia for a second stint late last year. Smeallie meanwhile joined at the beginning of 2002 after three years at BDO, with Sia crossing from NAB at the same time following an earlier internship at KPMG Singapore. Mayo also joined in early 2022.

KPMG’s Melbourne office also has five APAB reps, including senior consultant Caitlyn Baumann, senior analyst Janice Gu, audit quality & risk senior manager Melissa McGrath, assistant manager Royce Meneghini, and audit learning manager Tess Young. Manager Tia Kitchener is Brisbane’s sole member, while climate & sustainability manager Alyssa Stobie (ex-RSM UK) and audit senior manager Josh Schubert (ex-Grant Thornton) will represent Perth.

KPMG’s audit & assurance division is led by national managing partner and former external audit head Julian McPherson, who took up the post in July as part of a mid-year organisational reshuffle of the firm’s business lines, replacing now chief operating officer Eileen Hoggett. To ensure a focus on quality and independence, the rejig saw risk consulting moved from Audit & Assurance to Consulting, the expanded division led by Paul Howes.