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Do interviews differ for experienced consultants looking to switch firms?

Anonymous A asked on Feb 27, 2018 - 4 answers

How do interviews look for candidates who have been working in consulting for several years and who are now looking to switch firms? If I would do such a switch, would I still need to solve the typical cases, or will it be more focused around projects, sector/functional expertise, etc.? Would be great to get some transparency on this point...

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replied on Feb 27, 2018
McKinsey Engagement Manager & BCG Consultant | Interviewer at McK & BCG for 7 years | Coached 100+ candidates secure MBB offers
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When I switched from BCG to McKinsey (Consultant (BCG) / Associate (McK) level) in 2013, I was basically facing the identical interview process (apart from the fact that I did not have to do the PST anymore). The difference was rather the standard against which I was rated: there were higher expectations regarding seniority in demeanor, structuring abilty, prioritization, and contextual intuition regarding how to implement certain measures. But the general structure of the interviews was identical.

Hope this helps!

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replied on Feb 27, 2018
Former BCG decision round interviewer with 300+ real interviews in 8 years
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At a business analyst/associate level, interviews are the same, bar is definitely higher. As suggested mostly on following dimensions: presence, business sense, knowledge of business/finance concepts (e.g. if you come to interview from another consultancy and you do not know what EBITDA is, that's an almost non-starter).

At a consultant level, interview is similar on first round, on second round usually is more focused on ability to lead teams and structure work given that your ramp to Engagement Manager/Case Team Leader/Project Leader is much shorter.

Hope it helps,


updated his answer on Feb 27, 2018
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For analyst / associate levels my friends had exactly the same interviews. More demanding on a higher seniority level of course

Switching to the management positions required some additional skills:

  • Structuring the project (workstreams, timeframe). Basically, after the case, they asked how the candidate would structure the team
  • Industry knowledge - if you are an expert in a particular industry they will challenge that knowledge

Everything else was the same



Anonymous replied on Feb 27, 2018


Bar is really at a very very high level, especially if you are trying to move among MBBs. Several of my sponsored MBA colleagues tried to move (mostly due to geographic reasons) and not even a single one was able to do it so - and let me emphasize they are all sponsored, meaning they were top performers!

Caveat: might be easier in the US though, as I don’t have so much visibility to it



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