Comments (28)

Jan 2, 2022 - 4:35pm

Hey thanks for doing this. I am planning on recruiting for full time next fall and was wondering what starting salary was for LCOL MCOL out of undergrad for consulting role.

Jan 2, 2022 - 5:46pm

Within a region, there is no variance in pay (at any level) based on COL of the office you're in, so consultants make the same in NYC as they do in Dallas, SF, etc. (this is pretty standard in the industry, FYI). I believe with the latest market adjustments, comp out of undergrad is 90K base + 10-15% performance bonus + 10% profit sharing, with ~10K in additional one-time comp (signing bonus + relocation).

Regarding profit sharing:

(1) the % is applied to your "total comp" (i.e., base + bonus)

(2) it's not accessible as cash comp immediately (there's a vesting period - e.g., believe it's 40% accessible after you reach two years of tenure while it accrues YoY). Definitely a solid plus if you end up staying medium-ish term or longer.

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Jan 2, 2022 - 6:11pm

I had final rounds at two MBBs, so can comment on the interview experience a bit as well. In terms of the case interviews, I honestly found the cases to be very similar in terms of case type, cadence, etc. I'd say you're slightly more likely to get a more "out of left field" case at times in an MBB final round, but even then it depends. I only had one of those in all of my interviews with one MBB - everything else felt very "standard" (i.e., your typical business situation you'd find in a case book or online as case examples on their websites).

In terms of actual on-the-job project experience, as a firm, we generally operate in and try to win in the same space as MBB in terms of specific accounts, types of projects, etc. In North America, we index more on strategic operations than we do in other regions, but we still work across the board and there's mobility even on day 1 to navigate towards areas you want to be in.

To give you a sense, here is a high-level rundown of the types of projects I've had in my time at Kearney: board-level acquisition strategy (go/no-go), vertical integration strategy (which categories to vertically integrate), CEO-level cost transformation planning (which broad initiatives to focus on for the next 5-10 years), CDD for a MF, COVID-related supply chain strategy (what needs to change to get product on shelves), labor model transformation (standing up new roles, operating model, sizing savings), future-proof strategy development (how the client should react to shifting consumer trends, gov regulations, and technology).

Jan 2, 2022 - 6:17pm

Thanks greatly appreciated for the quality of your post! 

1. Why did you choose Kearney over the the MBB? I've heard the culture and WLB is great at Kearney from some people so just wanted to get your perspective

2. You mentioned there's mobility on day 1 to work in areas you're interested in. At which seniority level do you get to solely specialize in industries you like?

Jan 2, 2022 - 6:32pm

What is the travel schedule like? How do expenses work? How nice of a hotel do you stay in?My pe portco has utilized MBB, Parthenon, and other consultants in the past. Love when they come into the office bc that means I get free food. Bad thing is some of them are completely useless and are a huge time suck when I'm attached to them for a specific project

Jan 2, 2022 - 6:43pm

Back in pre-COVID times (which feels like it was 5 years ago at this point...), we were definitely a travel heavy firm - expectation pretty much every week was 4 days on client-site with Friday being at home (either WFH or working out of your home office - totally your choice). Since COVID hit, that's obviously changed - for me personally, ALL of my projects since have been remote. Whether teams are travelling or not right now is very client/team dependent. Some clients want us back on-site so we obviously are trying to accomodate that as best as possible. In other cases, even if not on client-site, some teams are trying to co-locate (e.g., have the whole team fly into the Kearney office in city X and work from there together). 

Expense policy is very generous. Basically, if you're on the road, everything is paid for: ubers to/from the hotel, meals, snacks, etc. The allowed expense per each meal was also something like $75 (hopefully no one is running close to that # three times a day, of course). And on any given dinner, you could even go over as long as the partner gave approval (which happened before when my team and I went to a michelin star restaurant for a social).

Definitely miss getting the chance to take clients out to dinner (and I'm sure they miss the same haha).

Jan 2, 2022 - 10:55pm

I'm assuming you're talking about experienced hire channels? I definitely can't comment on IBD (was not even a business student) but for consulting broadly, there are two potentially important components:

1) Have a strong resume - at your current firm, be the rockstar that gets on the interesting projects, go above and beyond to demonstrate your propensity for impact, take on the cool firm initiatives, etc.

2) Network - not necessarily a must, but can be helpful for recruitment teams to be able to put a face to a resume and validate cultural fit, competence, etc. Also related to this bucket would be securing a referral, which can help ensure your resume at least gets a good look

After that, it's all about acing the interview, which at junior levels is the same process and preparation as you'd expect through OCR.

Jan 3, 2022 - 12:27am

No magic formula for a given firm - just going out to the info sessions and focusing on having genuine conversations regarding things you're curious about is helpful. From a consultant's POV, it's always appreciated when you're not being asked the same question that 20 other people have asked in the past (or something that can probably be found on the website). 

If you have a strong resume, networking also isn't a must. Can be helpful for candidates on the edge if someone's on the inside beating the table for you. But I had interviews at places where I had never talked to a single person from that firm.

Jan 3, 2022 - 4:48am

Hi, thank you for doing this, just wanted to know easy/feasible would it be for someone to transfer from say an indian office to offices in the US/canada,how long do you typically have to be with the firm to do this,obviously this depends if theres spots up for people to transfer but how easy is it to transfer?is it something that happens often or is it too hard,any advice would be helpful

Jan 3, 2022 - 10:32am

Transfers within a region (e.g., within North America) are typically pretty smooth, outside of the really high-demand offices (e.g., NYC). I believe the minimum time at the firm is 1 year to do this. I'm not sure about transferring from India / Asia to North America, but I have seen it done (not sure how hard it truly was for those people). As with anything, it would help (or may be necessary in a case like this) to have some partner support for the move.

Jan 4, 2022 - 2:29pm

That's a great question. In my experience, I've definitely found it to be interesting and engaging work, especially since my personal reference point would be typical STEM career paths:

1) Great variety of work - I'm on something completely new (industry, problem, team, etc.) every few months maximum. As someone who "gets bored" of things fairly quickly, this constant change has kept me engaged.

2) Chance to work on an array of org-wide business problems - most of the projects I've been involve tackling problems that really require you to assess impact from multiple lens and functions. You're often much more siloed in other jobs whereas I've found in many cases, our whole purpose on a project is to break down the silos. I find the problems we tackle pretty interesting too (especially the variety). It could be anything ranging from how to get your products on shelves better amidst a global pandemic to how to commercialize an interesting new gene therapy related technology to whether you should buy a company or not.

3) Societal relevance - I personally find it fun that projects will often mirror hot topics going in the news - e.g., regarding rising inflation (e.g., should a company pass inflation on to consumers or eat it themselves?), supply chain disruptions (how can we make a more resilient supply chain?), etc.

4) The right level of detail - this is completely a personal preference, but one of the reasons I didn't want a technical career path was that I wasn't a fan of diving into incredible detail and staying in the weeds. For the types of projects we typically do, you can't go too deep on a company's inner workings and processes, which is how I personally like it.

5) Collegial teams - I really like my colleagues and I'd say consultants are fairly collegial people in general (with exceptions). High expectations and drive relative to your typical job, but I learn a lot from my colleagues and enjoy rolling up my sleeves with them.

Jan 5, 2022 - 5:02pm

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January 2022 Consulting

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