Restructuring Consulting - MBA Recruiting Advice

I am in the process of assisting a recent FTMBA graduate from Tuck/Ross/Darden/Fuqua following news that their return offer at a lead mid-market investment bank is no longer available. We've briefly discussed interest in restructuring consulting, especially in light of COVID-19 developments. Cursory searches through the forums suggest that Alvarez & Marsal, FTI Consulting, and Alix Partners are considered among the best. Is this accurate? Is there any disparity between the three? How about Berkely Research Group?

My friend has separate undergraduate degrees in finance and accounting from a state university, is a licensed CPA, and spent 3.5 years in audit serving large financial institutions prior to business school. Their background seems to align with many of the preferred qualifications listed online.

With that said, I've noticed that organizational structure and payscale vary across all three firms, and I'm hoping that the WSO CO Boards can lend some insight into each firm's differences. To which positions should they be applying? Again, a brief review online suggests that experienced hires with an MBA should be entering at the senior associate (Alvarez & Marsal), Director (FTI Consulting), and Vice President (Alix Partners) levels for these firm's restructuring practices. Is this correct? If so, how long will these hiring processes take? I've noticed that some individuals have complained of unusually long interview processes.

Apologies for the long-winded post. I appreciate any insight or assistance that can be provided!

Comments (7)

Apr 29, 2020

just from what I have seen, mba graduates usually go in A&M as analyst or associate, senior consultant for FTI, and VP for Alix.

Alix has a very long interview process (my friend had at least 5 rounds and things seemed to move kinda slow) while A&M and FTI's interviews are fairly standard interview process.

Apr 29, 2020
zhang128:

just from what I have seen, mba graduates usually go in A&M as analyst or associate, senior consultant for FTI, and VP for Alix.

Alix has a very long interview process (my friend had at least 5 rounds and things seemed to move kinda slow) while A&M and FTI's interviews are fairly standard interview process.

Interesting. I assume that my friend should apply to the positions listed in my original post based on meeting the preferred qualifications of the posting online, but this gives me something else to look into. Appreciate the insight!

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Apr 29, 2020

I guess I should make it clear that the positions I mentioned were for OCR process. Since your friend has CPA and related experience, he might be able to go in one level higher.

Apr 29, 2020
zhang128:

I guess I should make it clear that the positions I mentioned were for OCR process. Since your friend has CPA and related experience, he might be able to go in one level higher.

Ah. Ok. How's the interviewing process? I'm assuming they will be fine assuming they are able to demonstrate basic accounting knowledge, intelligently discuss the use of a 13-week cash flow model and bankruptcy process, and convey sincerity of interest in each firm and restructuring.

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Apr 29, 2020

There will be multiple rounds of behaviroals focusing on fit, interst, and industry knolwedge. Technicals are similar to IB questions. I would imgine they might ask some harder questions for your friend due to his background. And usually there will be an excel testing as well. It will most likely be a simple 3 statement test and potential data analysis questions. For Alix, I heard there is a perosnality test involved as well. Sometimes, there might be a case study involved as well.

Knowledge in bankruptcy process is definitely a plus but firms do not expect you to come in as an expect. Feel free to PM me if you need more info.

Apr 29, 2020
zhang128:

There will be multiple rounds of behaviroals focusing on fit, interst, and industry knolwedge. Technicals are similar to IB questions. I would imgine they might ask some harder questions for your friend due to his background. And usually there will be an excel testing as well. It will most likely be a simple 3 statement test and potential data analysis questions. For Alix, I heard there is a perosnality test involved as well. Sometimes, there might be a case study involved as well.

Knowledge in bankruptcy process is definitely a plus but firms do not expect you to come in as an expect. Feel free to PM me if you need more info.

Yikes. I'm not sure how some of this, including the model test, will go down with quarantine still being encouraged, if not required. God knows bankruptcies and restructuring work won't wait for a lull in the craziness.

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Apr 29, 2020
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