Let’s have a look at the different career levels and their respective salary.
Entry-level consultants at top consulting companies like McKinsey & Company, BCG, and Bain offer competitive salary packages to attract top talent. In addition to base salaries, entry-level consultants may also receive performance bonuses and benefits. It's worth noting that starting salaries in consulting tend to be higher than average salaries in other industries. This makes consulting an appealing career path for undergraduates and business school graduates looking to maximize their salary figures in their first year.
Depending on the experience you have gained throughout internships, your grades, and the prestige of the university you are coming from, your base salary as entry-level consultant first-year out of Undergrad/Master’s program starts at $110,000.
Entry-level consultant salary first-year out of Undergrad/Master’s program:
Signing Bonus: ~$5k
Performance Bonus: up to ~$30k
As an MBA or PhD, salary expectations are already on the next level with base salaries at around $190,000, more competitive signing bonuses and a performance bonus of up to $60,000.
Entry-level consultant salary first-year out of MBA/PhD program:
Signing Bonus: ~$35k
Performance Bonus: up to ~$60k
Managers and project leaders, who have gained a few years of experience in the consulting industry, earn higher salaries compared to their entry-level counterparts. These salaries are determined based on the consultant's track record and performance evaluations, with bonuses and benefits often included. Depending on the performance of projects that you are a part of, performance bonuses will continue to grow. Most performance bonuses range between 25%- 30% of your base salary.
Advancing to a mid-level position is seen as a sign of growth and expertise within the field. Notable consulting firms like Deloitte, PwC, and EY offer competitive salaries at the mid-level. This enables consultants to maximize their career paths and leverage their business school and undergraduate experiences.
At this point, your base salary will range between $220,000-$240,000 in top consulting firms. Most project managers are industry veterans with years of experience and in-depth knowledge of problem-solving skills.
Manager/Project Leader Salary (2-3 years out of MBA/PhD)
Performance Bonus: $100-140k
Associate principals and senior project leaders with extensive experience and leadership roles earn higher salaries due to their specialized knowledge and skills, which are highly valued by consulting firms like Accenture, KPMG, and McKinsey. Salaries for senior management can vary based on the consulting firm and location. Additionally, performance bonuses and benefits are common.
Associate Principal/Senior Project Leader Salary (4-5 years out of MBA/Ph.D.):
Performance Bonus: $150-250k
Project managers may become shareholders or partners of a consulting firm. At this level, you will most likely own a portion of the firm’s stock. Therefore, the performance of your entire firm will directly determine how much you can make within a specific timeframe. You may also receive bonuses from the projects that you participate in as a shareholder/partner.
Junior Partner/Principal (6-8 years out of MBA/Ph.D.) program:
Senior Partner/Director (10+ years out of MBA/Ph.D.) program: