Pros: High caliber of co-workers; opportunities for advancement; great learning
Cons: Long hours; often administrative tasks; performance rating system
Being an associate at KPMG is mostly comprised of travelling to client sites and performing audit procedures with client management. The Burnaby practice is focused on privately-traded enterprise clients.
The learning curve can be steep to begin with, but is overall quite easy to adapt to once you get your feet wet a few months in.
Partners and other management staff are great, being extremely supportive of your career aspirations, given that they understand it is not the average associate's goals to stay in public practice. Similarly, the co-workers are great as they are by-far some of the smartest people I've worked with and there's an abundance to learn from them, in addition to being great people to hang out with after work.
I would say the hardest part of the job is trying to fit your life into the work schedule, as while the firm tries its best to provide some balance, the nature of the business (client-driven deadlines) often does not allow for this. Also, the performance rating system can often seem rather subjective and political rather than being based on objective merit.
The best part of the job is definitely the people you work with, as even though work can be mundane and long, going through it with intelligent, motivated, and likeable colleagues makes it really worth it.