Why are consulting firms so touchy on the salary issue?

After a couple of weeks of work at an MBB firm, I still can't get a firm grasp of the firm's raises and salary levels and different seniority levels! You try to talk to people about it and no-one wants to divulge information. HR is tight-lipped as well. All my fellow undergrad consultants are wondering the same thing.

Can we create some kind of chart with input from fellow Wallstreetoasis members?

Analyst:

1st year - 65K base + 5K EOY bonus + 15K signing and other incentives
2nd year - salary increase ranging from 15-25% - 75K base + 10K bonus
3rd year - salary bump to 110-115K + bonus of 15-25K

Associate

1st year - 120K base + ~30-40K in bonuses/other incentives
2nd year - 130K base + ~30-35K in bonuses/other incentives

Manager/EM level

1st year - 170K base + 30-70K bonus

after that, I have no clue!

How do you fare in terms of salary increase if you're an average performer? 10%? 15%? 30%? What about distinctive performer?

Comments (17)

Dec 5, 2007

As you can tell from the numbers you've already given, working at McKinsey is not a way to "make a killing."

Dec 5, 2007

That 3rd year analyst salary number sounds a little suspect...

And McKinsey is notoriously secretive, even amongst consulting firms.

Dec 5, 2007

They will always be relatively secretive about it, but at some point you should see a progression / est. comp chart. Below are some figures I recall from the MBB where I used to work (note: these are from late '05 / early '06):

1st year analyst: $60K base + $6K EOY target (for any year, top bucket gets 1.5x target, second bucket gets 1.3x target and the rest get 1.0x); I am not including signing bonuses / other related comp

2nd year analyst: $70K base + $12K EOY target w/ same performance-based adj.

3rd year analyst: $85K base + $24K EOY target w/ same performance-based adj. (note: does not include business school sponsorship and other bonuses available to those accepting a b-school offer)

4th year or 1st year post MBA consultant: $125K base + $40K EOY target w/ same performance-based adj.

Dec 5, 2007

I think the base is up 5k for the 1st/2nd years and up ~10 for the 3rd years.

Dec 5, 2007

thats.a.lot.less.than.banking........

does.the.compensation.ever.catch.up.to.banking.at.the.senior.levels?

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Dec 5, 2007

Not really.

In general, there's a sort of vagueness around consulting in general. For example you don't say "I flew in first class on British Airways" or "Yeah the team is staying at the Ritz". May explain the culture of reticence around salaries.

Dec 5, 2007

That's in response to ghosht.

Dec 5, 2007

Kind of. Senior Partners make in the millions. Once you get profit-sharing past the manager level, it rises quite steeply. Not close to banking, but pretty damn good.

Dec 5, 2007

first.the.dots.because.my.spacebar.broke(im.home.sick.today)

does.anyone.know.of.bankers.making.a.switch.to.Management.consulting....postMBA...or..otherwise?..........monetarily.the.incentive.seems.low........but.then.again.consulting.seems.to.pay.better.than.fortune.500

Dec 5, 2007
ghosht:

first.the.dots.because.my.spacebar.broke(im.home.sick.today)

does.anyone.know.of.bankers.making.a.switch.to.Management.consulting....postMBA...or..otherwise?..........monetarily.the.incentive.seems.low........but.then.again.consulting.seems.to.pay.better.than.fortune.500

If true, this is pretty entertaining.

Personally, I'd go with underscores before using periods. Your post reads like a telegram.

Dec 5, 2007

Yeah, I've worked with bankers who left after their 1st year as an analyst. I've met and worked with quite a few ex-bankers in fact.

Dec 5, 2007

using.the.shift.key.is.less.efficient.plus.the.period.is.closer.to.the.space.bar.so.more.intuitive.

16180.......any.ex.bankers.ever.tell.you.why.they.made.the.jump?

Dec 6, 2007

why.do.consulting.if.it.has.same.hours.as.banking.but.with.less.pay?...ppl.say.work.is.more.interesting.but.i.don't.buy.it

btw.my.spacebar.works.fine.i.just.think.this.is.fun

Dec 5, 2007

Why don't you buy it? Go from being a banker to the M&A practice of some consulting firm, pretty defined role.

Dec 5, 2007

If.you.do.a.couple.of.years.of.banking.then.a.couple.of.consulting.that.probably.would.make.admission.to.a.top.B-school.relatively.easy.no?

Dec 6, 2007

what does mbb stand for?

Dec 5, 2007
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