Big Four management consulting to corporate finance

Anon007's picture
Rank: Senior Chimp | 16

Hey guys,

I'm hoping to secure an offer for management consulting at the big 4 but would like to make the transition to corporate finance once I have some experience in consulting. Would this be possible? I know people who have made the transition from audit to corp finance but not from advisory.

Thank you!!

Comments (18)

Aug 31, 2018

bump

Aug 31, 2018

Strategy manager at my F500 is ex big 4 M&A advisory. Transition should be easy

Aug 31, 2018

Thank you!:)

Sep 4, 2018

Do you know if the strategy manager was doing FDD work at Big 4 and at what level he switched over from Big 4?

Sep 4, 2018

From what he told me he was working on the divestiture/integration/carve-out/strategy side of things.

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Sep 4, 2018
Macronmania:

Strategy manager at my F500 is ex big 4 M&A advisory. Transition should be easy

with MC you don't get the ACA as you do with audit/m&a so if I wanted to transition would I have to start of as an analyst?

Sep 4, 2018

Corporate Finance is very broad and has many sub divisions. You just need to find a good fit, but I would say consultant/ex-bankers are always welcomed in corp fin in general as they bring a good skill set to the team. Manager positions require 5-8y experience, and quite a bit of knowledge on your specific industry. I would say best bet would be a senior analyst position.

Sep 5, 2018

You can definitely land a spot in CF. You may even land one of the more interesting positions, but just know that your background won't be the standard path. That's ok for many roles, but for some positions people are going to want more relevant experience. For instance, I'm looking for a Dir of FP&A, I'm going to require that the candidate have full P&L FP&A experience. I have an ex "consultant" on my team and he's good, but he wouldnt be ready for this role.

If you go in knowing that your learning curve into CF may be a little more difficult and that you won't be a fit for everything, but that your uniqueness will be an asset in some ways as well then you'll be fine.

twitter: @CorpFin_Guy

    • 1
Sep 5, 2018
accountingbyday:

You can definitely land a spot in CF. You may even land one of the more interesting positions, but just know that your background won't be the standard path. That's ok for many roles, but for some positions people are going to want more relevant experience. For instance, I'm looking for a Dir of FP&A, I'm going to require that the candidate have full P&L FP&A experience. I have an ex "consultant" on my team and he's good, but he wouldnt be ready for this role.

If you go in knowing that your learning curve into CF may be a little more difficult and that you won't be a fit for everything, but that your uniqueness will be an asset in some ways as well then you'll be fine.

Thank you for your insight:)
I understand I won't be a fit for everything and my best chance would be to come in as a Senior analyst.
Would you say that the exit opportunities (after big 4) for myself, going from MC>CF are more limited then someone who started as an analyst in CF at the big 4 as they have more experience?

Sep 6, 2018

Someone who starts in CF (especially in an FDLP) will have more direct, relevant experience. Again, that's not necessarily bad, but just might limit you. For example, if I'm looking for a Finance Manager to support our IT organization and manage allocation of IT expenses, someone who already knows the organization, people and our IT systems might be preferable to a Management Consultant.

It might be easier to transition as a Sr. Analyst, but for career progression purposes I'd consider waiting until you can come in as a Mgr.

twitter: @CorpFin_Guy

    • 1
Sep 6, 2018

Misleading title..

Sep 6, 2018
jjcannon:

Misleading title..

I was likewise duped.

Sep 6, 2018

anyone have any comments? there have been posts in the past about how one could transition from big 4 valuation or transaction services into banking, or from audit > b-school > banking, but what about risk advisory/ internal audit to banking or anything else in corp finance?

Sep 6, 2018

The only advantage risk/internal audit gives over external audit is that you stand out a little but more because its a smaller area than audit. Aside from that the work is very similiar.You will pick up similiar skills to working in audit so not that transferable to banking (people in risk basically do the more interesting parts of the work people in audit do).

Another advantage you have is that Im pretty sure your area will fall under "advisory" within your firm....I imagine its a lot easier to move from department to department in advisory than it is to move from audit to advisory. I think you still need to be angling for a move to valuations/modelling if you want to go IB before MBA.

I will say thread carefully...you dont want to be in the door 5 mins and be shouting about how you want to move. Play it cool....learn a bit about risk/audit, work hard and use every opportunity you can to network with people in other areas of advisory.

You will have a performance review after about 9 months and then would be a good time to mention your interest in maybe getting a broader experience and maybe doing some sort of a secondment to valuations. The main thing is dont get on the wrong side of your manager or partner...try and develop a good honest open working relationship with them.

Be warned though it can be difficult to make the move during your training contract. Once you qualify (after three years) as long as you have passed your exams and have performed well/haven't pissed anybody off it should be realtively easy to make the move but it can ve very hard (not too mention a sensitive subject) during your training contract.

After that Im not sure how hard it is to make the move from valuations to IB.....People tend to grossly underestimate the difficulty of moving from audit to advisory during big 4 training contracts...I imagine a lot of people do the same with the move from valuations to IB.

Sep 6, 2018

thanks a lot maherj1! in my contract it states that my employment with the company is "at will", but nothing about a 3-yr time period. does that make a difference? And you are correct about it being under advisory, so hopefully the move wont be exceptionally difficult. anyone else have any opinions or input?

Sep 6, 2018

Depends which Big 4 advisory you are talking about. As another poster pointed out risk advisory / audit is, for all intensive purposes, audit. Def. can be done you just need a good story. You won't find much good info on this site about the transfer, as anytime Big 4 is mentioned everyone comes out of the woodwork to stroke their egos and bash the whole idea.

Search for Kenny-Power-CFA and track his postings about Big 4 experience - good stuff.

I am pretty sure risk advisory falls under audit. I at least know that in Deloittes Memphis office it does (focused on technology side)

People move from Big 4 to IB / PE regularly - before anybody has a heart attack, I mean a small number of bright guys - look at some boutique IB / PE firms that have bios and you can get an idea.

Sep 6, 2018
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