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Axel

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5

How do BCG decide to hire v. not hire a candidate

Hi Everyone,

I recently completed 2 case interviews with BCG Middle East (specifically for the role of BA in the Riyadh office). There are no further rounds. I wanted to know how the interviewers (both are Principals) decide to hire a candidate or not. Do they have to agree on the hiring decision? Do they have a predetermined number of candidates that they can accept?

Thanks and I'm looking forward to your answers!

Hi Everyone,

I recently completed 2 case interviews with BCG Middle East (specifically for the role of BA in the Riyadh office). There are no further rounds. I wanted to know how the interviewers (both are Principals) decide to hire a candidate or not. Do they have to agree on the hiring decision? Do they have a predetermined number of candidates that they can accept?

Thanks and I'm looking forward to your answers!

(edited)

5 answers

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Book a coaching with Axel

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Hi Abdullah,

Each firm will have specific evaluation frameworks that assess you along with a standard set of criteria. In the case interview part of the interview, it is typically your structuring skills, analytical ability, communication skills, coachability, or some similar combination.

Then you also have the fit component where you are assessed on your ability to tell compelling stories in a structured way and show how you deal with adversity.

In order to pass, you will need to have both of the principals agreeing and they will be comparing notes once both interviews are completed. This is why it's really important to not make the same mistake twice across two rounds of interviews! Sometimes they will be comparing notes already between your interviews and make sure to test any weaknesses that they have identified in your first interview.

-A

Hi Abdullah,

Each firm will have specific evaluation frameworks that assess you along with a standard set of criteria. In the case interview part of the interview, it is typically your structuring skills, analytical ability, communication skills, coachability, or some similar combination.

Then you also have the fit component where you are assessed on your ability to tell compelling stories in a structured way and show how you deal with adversity.

In order to pass, you will need to have both of the principals agreeing and they will be comparing notes once both interviews are completed. This is why it's really important to not make the same mistake twice across two rounds of interviews! Sometimes they will be comparing notes already between your interviews and make sure to test any weaknesses that they have identified in your first interview.

-A

Hi, Axel. Thanks for answering my question. Now hypotheticaly, what if one of them suggests hiring me while the other disagrees, what would be the common practice in this case? — Abdullah on Jul 13, 2020

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Hi,

Sad to hear that.

1) They make a decision based only on your performance during the interview. Your background doesn’t play much role here.

2) They make the decision together and in case of doubts they will invite you for an additional interview

3) The assessment criteria would involve fit and cases

  • Fit: absence or red flags, structured speech, strong storytelling skills, etc
  • Cases: structuring skills, business sense, analytical and maths skills

Best,

Anton

Hi,

Sad to hear that.

1) They make a decision based only on your performance during the interview. Your background doesn’t play much role here.

2) They make the decision together and in case of doubts they will invite you for an additional interview

3) The assessment criteria would involve fit and cases

  • Fit: absence or red flags, structured speech, strong storytelling skills, etc
  • Cases: structuring skills, business sense, analytical and maths skills

Best,

Anton

Hi Anton, Thanks for clearing it up for me. I guess I worded it badly by saying there are no further rounds. What I meant is that the process is only 2 case interviews. — Abdullah on Jul 10, 2020 (edited)

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Hi Anonymous,

  1. Yes, they need to agree on the decision. Agreeing here meaning having a fact-based opinion ('I don't like this guy' is not enough) and discussing that with observations from the other interviewer.
  2. Yes, also consulting firms are profit-oriented companies and thus need to balance demand of consulting services with supply of human resources. Altogether it's marketing/recruiting bullshit that the firm will hire all people if they are good enough hires, but it's technically correct since the 'good enough' bar floates with the demand side.

Hope that helps - if so, please be so kind to give it a thumbs-up with the green upvote button below!

Robert

Hi Anonymous,

  1. Yes, they need to agree on the decision. Agreeing here meaning having a fact-based opinion ('I don't like this guy' is not enough) and discussing that with observations from the other interviewer.
  2. Yes, also consulting firms are profit-oriented companies and thus need to balance demand of consulting services with supply of human resources. Altogether it's marketing/recruiting bullshit that the firm will hire all people if they are good enough hires, but it's technically correct since the 'good enough' bar floates with the demand side.

Hope that helps - if so, please be so kind to give it a thumbs-up with the green upvote button below!

Robert

Hi Robert, thanks for sharing. It seems as though you all agree that a consensus has to be reached. — Abdullah on Jul 11, 2020

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Hi Abdullah,

To move to the next round or get an offer, all the interviewers have to agree on your performance. If they disagree they may organize a further interview, although that’s more typical at McKinsey.

In the interview, you are evaluated on fit questions and the case. You are also judged on your general communication.

Consulting companies have usually a hiring target, however if you perform well it is unlikely that they will reject you even if there is no immediate need – rather they may propose to join later. That’s what happened for example with the COVID when the need for new hires changed.

Hope this helps,

Francesco

Hi Abdullah,

To move to the next round or get an offer, all the interviewers have to agree on your performance. If they disagree they may organize a further interview, although that’s more typical at McKinsey.

In the interview, you are evaluated on fit questions and the case. You are also judged on your general communication.

Consulting companies have usually a hiring target, however if you perform well it is unlikely that they will reject you even if there is no immediate need – rather they may propose to join later. That’s what happened for example with the COVID when the need for new hires changed.

Hope this helps,

Francesco

Hi Francesco, that sounds good. Thanks! — Abdullah on Jul 10, 2020

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Hello there!

Yes to both:

  1. Agreement is fundamental, and if there are doubts they would make you another interview -even if it´s exceptional, happens-.
  2. Numbers are set, depending on the business plan for the year, +/- 1 person

Hope it helps!

Cheers,

Clara

Hello there!

Yes to both:

  1. Agreement is fundamental, and if there are doubts they would make you another interview -even if it´s exceptional, happens-.
  2. Numbers are set, depending on the business plan for the year, +/- 1 person

Hope it helps!

Cheers,

Clara

Thanks Clara, this seems in line with what everyone else was saying — Abdullah on Jul 13, 2020

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