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Sparks
01-25-2008, 02:59 PM
Which are the main forms of consultancy agencies?..or do you call it by another name?

Just like IS consultancy (eg. Accenture,Bain etc), Accounting consultancies (The Big 4) etc...

Do these firms accept fresh graduates, or potential candidates are expected to have some years of relevant experience?

dershing
03-07-2008, 07:54 PM
Consultanting firms are companies that earn money providing "brainpower" coupled with benchmarking of best practises to their clients. The scope can be very broad. IT consultants can help advice on the best combination of hardware and software and processes to achieve business goals of their clients. IT consulting firms include IBM, Accenture.

Management Consulting firms provide general management and strategic issue consultancy work. An example will be tourism board hiring a consultant to do a strategic analysis and study of Singapore's positioning vis a vis our competitor nations and make recommendations for our tourism policy and tactics moving forward. Firms in the area include Bain & co, Mckinsey, Arthur D little etc.

HR Consultancy firms provide their clients with HR related advice and studies and analysis. An example will be a large firm hiring a HR Consultant to benchmark its compensation practises and offering suggestions on how to improve. HR Consultnats include Watson Wyatt, Mercer etc.

Accounting firms are also like consultants to some extent but a large part of their business is in audit and not straightforward consulting. The big 4 are a good example.

As for hiring, they all do hire fresh graduates and they try to hire highly intelligent and driven individuals. MCs prob pay the best, paying above $6K for fresh graduates. But they hire 1 or 2 a year at best. Consulting firms, Investment Banking all try toget the cream of the crop. So it a good academic record (1st class), top university, strong cca and a good personality and interviewing skills to boot that will help you qualify.

charming
04-08-2008, 07:17 PM
what degrees do management consultants prefer? I actually have a place at Yale, and I wanna do Economics and Mathematics - would that be okay?

dershing
04-09-2008, 09:33 AM
Should be fine. Basically they look for extremely bright people from all sorts of backgrounds. Need to be very motivated and hardworking too. Ifyou are graduating from Yale, then no big deal whatever you study.

Freshie!
07-03-2008, 10:43 AM
I am interested in MC as well. Surely when one is successful hired into a MC firm, one's area of consultancy is more or less determined by the degree and major he/she obtained is it not? Or does it mean that the company will retrain you in other areas such that you can be relocated to a department not of your expertise?

The last comment about Yale makes me think Singapore Universities are a gigantic leap away from these Ivy league schools. So if I'm enrolling into a local University does mean that the chances of getting into a managament consultancy firm is much much reduced? :(

elee
07-03-2008, 10:50 AM
I am interested in MC as well. Surely when one is successful hired into a MC firm, one's area of consultancy is more or less determined by the degree and major he/she obtained is it not? Or does it mean that the company will retrain you in other areas such that you can be relocated to a department not of your expertise?

The last comment about Yale makes me think Singapore Universities are a gigantic leap away from these Ivy league schools. So if I'm enrolling into a local University does mean that the chances of getting into a managament consultancy firm is much much reduced? :(

hello freshie!

you happen to point out some of the questions i have in mind too!

LockT31W
07-03-2008, 07:13 PM
The last comment about Yale makes me think Singapore Universities are a gigantic leap away from these Ivy league schools. So if I'm enrolling into a local University does mean that the chances of getting into a managament consultancy firm is much much reduced? :(

i doubt so. if you're talking about local MCs, the number of ivy league applicants are pretty small - so even if we assume that ALL the ivy league applicants are successful, there're still lots of places left and in effect you'll still competing with local grads and will still stand a good chance. but of course you really need to be very good in your own uni and course. really good. also be active in ccas.

Freshie!
07-04-2008, 02:19 PM
That's rather reassuring, but which are the local MC firms? Haven't really heard of them.

dershing
07-04-2008, 06:44 PM
Q : I am interested in MC as well. Surely when one is successful hired into a MC firm, one's area of consultancy is more or less determined by the degree and major he/she obtained is it not? Or does it mean that the company will retrain you in other areas such that you can be relocated to a department not of your expertise?

Actually usually what you study has little impact. These employers are looking for top notch talent who have a knack for hardwork, analysis and have a good business sense. Basically peopel who woudl thrive in the business world. So you can be an engienering grad or a PPE grad or a lawyer and you can be hired as an entry level associate.

Q :The last comment about Yale makes me think Singapore Universities are a gigantic leap away from these Ivy league schools. So if I'm enrolling into a local University does mean that the chances of getting into a managament consultancy firm is much much reduced?

Not really, but you do need to get that 1st class (2nd upper has quite a lot of people in it) and you also need a super good CCA. Many top local grads are workign for consulting firms.

LockT31W
07-04-2008, 08:48 PM
Not really, but you do need to get that 1st class (2nd upper has quite a lot of people in it) and you also need a super good CCA. Many top local grads are workign for consulting firms.

What is meant by "super good CCA"? Are leadership positions very important?

Freshie!
07-06-2008, 11:17 PM
Thanks, its good to know that we still stand a chance. Regarding stress, how is the stress like comparing to auditing? Will being an auditor from the start prepare you well for a career as a MC?

LockT31W
07-21-2008, 12:31 AM
i think most MCs start out as fresh grads. in fact, jobs as analysts with MCs and ibanks are widely considered as stepping stones to other careers because of the connections that they make and the experience they give you.

DukeBlue
01-09-2009, 12:47 PM
Hi all,

Just offering some help/advice here. If you're interested in pure strategy (aka management) consulting, you should know that an important part of the selection process is the case interview. The interviewer gets you to converse with him so as to solve a hypothetical business problem. Having done ~80 of these cases by now, I have noticed there is a certain process to solving the case that will yield the best results. With that realization, I now serve with my school's Consulting Club to coach/prepare younger students for such interviews. I have also begun to write a case interview handbook for the Club, outlining how to tackle most cases. Yes, there are many commercially available ones out there, most famously Marc Cosentino's Case In Point. All of them provide business frameworks for tackling problems, but do not show how to apply those in a step-by-step fashion. To address that, I've come up with a 10-step breakdown of the case process, which may wind up being a cornerstone of the eventual booklet, once it's done.

The Major Steps to a Case (aka how a case usually pans out):
1) Listen to interviewer’s setup of the case
2) Ask clarifying qns and/or repeat back to him
3) Optional—chat about that specific industry for 30 secs, usually asking abt the value chain or technical particulars of that product/service. Useful only if you don't know how the industry works at all (it's obscure, or you're just clueless).
4) Take a minute—do up a framework (aka buckets of questions you’d ask to get to the bottom of the problem)
5) Present the framework. Better yet, preface your presentation proper with the following 3 things (optional):
a. Note how many “buckets” of questions you have so they know what to expect
b. Note the key question(s) and/or issue(s) that drove your thinking overall (or for each bucket, if the buckets are vastly different in nature)
c. Bonus: as you run through each concern/question/piece of research listed on your framework, show you can prioritize by noting the important points first and leaving the less important ones last (and explain why each is/isn’t that urgent to look into right away)
6) He’ll probe you on a specific topic. Do whatever he asks and converse to drive towards the solution. The math, if any, and graphs, if any, usually come in here.
7) Make recommendations if they seem called for. Defend them quantitatively and qualitatively if you can. Strive for creative and/or reasonable/plausible arguments.
8) Situate the impact of the solution on the overall big picture (if the solution will probably increase revenue by $1M, what percent increase is that?)
9) Note any extra “out of the box” things you want (what would happen if your simplifying assumptions are off, or extra ideas you wrote down but didn’t have time to go into). This is more rumination, perhaps. And your interviewer may not give you the time to talk.
10) You may be asked to give a 30-second elevator speech. Go! Some tips:
a. Leave out the precise methodology and math and other irrelevant details
b. Quickly restate the objectives of the case
c. Note the main issues/questions that drove your analysis
d. Note what came of those lines of research/questioning that resulted from (c).
e. Note that recommendations/conclusions flow from d.
f. Situate the impact of your recommendations on the bigger picture (What’s a $30M increase in revenues mean? A 10% increase?)

LockT31W
01-09-2009, 02:20 PM
Hi DukeBlue, thanks for sharing this amazing and comprehensive strategy for acing the interview. I'm even gonna bookmark this page since I might wanna go into MC when I graduate. And you must have heard this many times, but congrats on getting the AB Duke scholarship, it's hard enough for Americans to get it but you're a Singaporean even! It must have been an amazing 4 years at Duke especially with AB Duke.

DukeBlue
01-11-2009, 12:46 AM
No problem! If you're interested in knowing about the daily work (not just the "save companies" big picture) of consulting, I could share about my internship on another thread. Also, I'm sure the consulting club of your own university will have materials, resources and support for aspiring consultants.

And wow, how did you know about the AB programme? I've always thought it was obscure and ill-known outside of the US. I myself didn't know it existed (I applied to Duke at a family friend's suggestion). Still, I have to say: judging excellence at such high levels becomes somewhat arbitrary. Interviewing brilliant kids and trying to pick the "best" 15 from among the >20,000 that apply to Duke annually is a very humbling activity. Most of the finalists we interview are amazing in their own way, but we have to cut some of them out anyway. It's what I call the phenomenon of "arbitrary excellence"--that between two closely-matched brilliant candidates, who "wins" becomes almost random. This is why, when I give talks at VJC, I advise students to cast a wide net and not insist only on one specific university--because one's luck "evens out" only over multiple iterations of the (proverbial) coin toss.

LockT31W
01-16-2009, 11:50 PM
Yes, if you don't mind it's be great to hear more about your internship, it'll help a lot of people. Was your internship in Singapore? I heard MCs pay interns very well ;)

It's true that unfortunately not many people know about the AB Duke scholarship. I knew about it when I applied to US universities. Unfortunately but expectedly I didn't even get shortlisted for it, but at least now I'm still going to a US university with financial aid. I totally agree that students should apply to as many universities as possible, since it's hard enough to get into just one of them already. I actually applied to more than 10. But I think you can talk about the AB Duke in the US university forum, and since you're an AB Duke yourself and interview potential candidate I'm sure you can say alot about it. I bet it'll also attract more people to try their luck at Duke, which is always good. :)

DukeBlue
01-17-2009, 09:44 AM
Sure, I'll post about my experiences in another thread, since it's a distinct topic from this one. In brief, I interned for Bain in Atlanta, USA. And I enjoyed it quite a bit even though there were certainly some boring days and trying moments. Sadly, they didn't make me a job offer at the end, so I interviewed with another firm--BCG--and they're trying to bring me in somehow (more below).

And yes they do pay well (the Top 3 pay roughly the same, with McK paying the least among the top 3 possibly due to their prestige). Still, the pay wasn't why I took MConsulting; I love a challenge, and I also like learning a lot in a very short time. Since I didn't need all that internship money, after paying for my living costs I donated away half the remainder and saved the rest.

Anyway, my US experience may therefore not be the same as consulting in Singapore. In fact, I'd very much like to hear from Asia-based consultants on what it's like in Asia, since I've heard consulting in the West and the East are very different animals. I'm interested to know about consulting in Asia because I may wind up consulting in Singapore rather than the US (where I would've preferred to start working). BCG had hoped to hire me in Atlanta, but has no space (due to bad US economy?), so they're trying to see if BCG Singapore can hire me instead (hopefully the answer is "yes!").

zhjjhz888
03-01-2009, 06:35 PM
there are oil/petrochem consulting firms like Purvin & Gertz and CMAI.

Also are the engineering consulting firms.

williamparkar
04-22-2010, 07:38 PM
HR Consultancy firms provide their clients with HR related advice and studies and analysis. An example will be a large firm hiring a HR Consultant to benchmark its compensation practises and offering suggestions on how to improve. HR Consultnats include Watson Wyatt, Mercer etc.

v3ng3anc3z
05-23-2010, 12:12 AM
I was just wondering whether a DDP of biz+econs or biz+industrial & systems engineering is more suitable for a future career in MC?

Thanks!

DukeBlue
05-23-2010, 04:10 PM
v3ng3anc3z: For MC, it really doesn't matter what you study, so one course will not be much better than the other for MC. You'll learn all you need to learn on the job. The best prep for MC is to be well-informed about the world (business and well as general world affairs). Cultivate curiosity and keep asking about how things/businesses work.

In anything, the "correct" degree for MC is simply a Bachelor's Degree in Learning Very Quickly, Remaining Graceful Under Pressure and Blending Rigor with Creativity.

On a completely separate note, there are 2 really good websites for those interested in MC, and how to get into it:

http://www.managementconsulted.com/
http://www.caseinterview.com/

v3ng3anc3z
05-28-2010, 09:04 PM
DukeBlue: Thanks for the websites!

I was wondering whether there are local firms in Singapore that offer MC jobs other than those famous ones overseas.

Thanks!

EDIT: I was wondering whether you have any MC/business-related books to recommend to someone like me who wishes to know more?

DukeBlue
05-30-2010, 02:48 PM
I'm sure there are local MC firms, but I'm afraid I don't know their names. I also suspect that local firms will be specialized so you'll see less variety in your casework (though good if you want to specialize young). In my one year so far I've worked in banking, pharmaceuticals, fashion, retail, durables, government, food, shipping and many more industries. It's head-splitting to learn so much in a short time, but if you can take it obviously you'll learn a lot.

As for books, there are plenty published by BCG, Mckinsey etc. Look on their websites and I'm sure they'll be featuring their books there.

DukeBlue
03-12-2011, 01:13 AM
Simon: As I and others have mentioned earlier in this thread, any major can get you into consulting as long as you're bright and driven. I myself studied English Literature at uni and am now working at BCG.

LockT31W
03-12-2011, 12:45 PM
The brand name of your university is also more important than what you major in. Unless your job requires certain expertise or technical skills, your value is really all about general aptitude.

virtualfullstop
09-07-2011, 02:11 AM
Just wanna thank the TS as well as DukeBlue for the invaluable comments..

From what I see, it seems like the university that you graduate from is really more important.

Between NUS and say LSE, which would be a more powerful brand name?

drunkenhammie
09-25-2011, 08:16 PM
You guys can check this out: Vault's 25 best consultancies in Asia
http://www.vault.com/wps/portal/usa/rankings/individual?rankingId1=266&rankingId2=-1&rankings=1&regionId=4000&rankingYear=2011

It's a bit strange because some of the big names, like BCG, McK, Accenture - are all near the bottom of the list!

I graduated from LSE with a BSc International Relations.. and am now looking for a graduate position in MC. I read somewhere that BCG hires 1 out of 200 applicants for the Associate position (for fresh grads or those with a bit of work experience) :O

But I applied last year while studying, and managed to get to the first round of interviews.. and then flunked it :( Preparing for case interviews reallly count! Now I can only apply again after TWO years!! Sigh.

drunkenhammie
09-25-2011, 08:24 PM
Just wanna thank the TS as well as DukeBlue for the invaluable comments..

From what I see, it seems like the university that you graduate from is really more important.

Between NUS and say LSE, which would be a more powerful brand name?

I think for the bigger global firms, LSE has a better international reputation.. I studied there and during the recruitment months, we had tons of MCs coming in to recruit/give specialised case interview help etc. Not sure if they also do that at NUS, but the opportunities to meet face-to-face with recruiters was phenomenal.

annahussy
07-20-2012, 01:17 PM
I think for consultancy there are many various forms are available through online agencies. I think according to me there terms are define the fresh or else experience person also.

samuelstark2
09-08-2014, 05:37 PM
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