I know most consider MBB to be the top tier consulting firms but I was wondering what you guys think of OW, Booz & Co, Monitor, etc in terms of their rank/tier. Also, I know Booz Allen and Booz & Co split up a few years ago and just recently their non-compete clause expired, so do you guys think Booz & Co or Booz Allen will ever be considered tier 1 consulting firms as it was before the split?
Prestigious Consulting Firm Rankings
When it comes to ranking consulting firms, there are many different opinions but it is important to note that rankings can change year to year depending on the yardstick you are using.
If you were actually in consulting you would know that the only thing that matters is accounts won and b-school placement. From that standpoint, it's very subjective based on situation, with the clear distinguishment being MBB for overall competitiveness.
Our users provided their own lists with explanations below:
Tier 1 Firms
What makes a firm Tier1 is that its top notch across different regions and industries.
That certainly holds true for McK and BCG, and mostly also for Bain.
Tier 2 Firms
The Tier2 firms each have unique strengths and weaknesses.
It's impossible to rank these objectively, as e.g. perhaps Monitor's regional weakness in Europe might be irrelevant to an American applicant, but a huge deal to an applicant from France.
Hence people largely agree that MBB are Tier1, however after that it gets somewhat blurred.
Large Tier 2:
Examples for Tier 2:
OW is very strong in financial strategy, however does little strategic planning.
Berger is Tier1 in Europe and China, but small in the US.
Tier 2 - Small with Regional Focus:
Tier 3 - "Scale > Quality":
The Recruiting Factor:
- Another factor is recruiting - the rockstar candidates who get offers from various firms will always choose MBB over others.
- Booz is a huge firm, but they simply can't hang with MBB when it comes to cross-offers, big problem.
- Berger has a hard time shaking off it's Euro-centric image (you're on their career website http://join.rolandberger.com/and click on an Event... boom, everything in German all of a sudden.)
My own consulting list, for what it's worth is below. My rankings come from personal experience, close contacts, industry perception, and current wins:
Reasoning: Prestige is stupid, misplaced, and completely....well, relevant.
Reasoning: Deloitte has done an outstanding job building a strategy group. They're the first to break from the Big 4 mold/stereotype. The only other Big 4 that's done anything to mirror that success is in the next tier...
Reasoning: PwC is on an acquisition spree. PTRM and Diamond are two major buys. Their book of business is pretty legit. Wyman has a lot of prestige points, but is still relatively a boutique at the end of the day.
Reasoning: If we were going strictly by business segment, Accenture's implementation work is top notch. However, its strategy group is small, and its Management Consulting unit many times stays within the implementation sphere. EY just keeps chugging along.
Reasoning: KPMG is losing talent constantly, and pay/wins/prestige is last in the Big 4. I haven't heard a good story, and my friends have been applying elsewhere at a good pace.
My two cents, for what it's worth.
Need Help Preparing for Consulting Case Interviews?
Land at an elite consulting firm with the most comprehensive case interview prep in the world. The WSO Consulting Interview Prep Course has everything you'll ever need to land the most coveted jobs.