How do I go about referrals and applying?

MBB tier2
New answer on Apr 22, 2022
7 Answers
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Anonymous A asked on Apr 19, 2022

From my understanding, referrals are typically more helpful if you get them before you apply. Does anyone have any advice or experience in referral processes at specific firms? I'm coming up on senior year and FT recruiting. I want to get an understanding of:

1. How helpful is the internal referral for the firm in question? Does it get you close to a first round? 

2. What is the referral process? Is it internal and attached to your application, or is it an internal note that then asks you to apply? 

3. How can I help you get a referral bonus? Do I need to wait for the employee to refer me to apply (do not apply before hand). 

Interested in MBB/T2/EYP S&. Thanks

(edited)

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Ian
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replied on Apr 19, 2022
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Hi there,

Referrals are only helpful if you get them before you apply. Please don't go around getting referrals after you apply - this literally defeats the purpose!

1. How helpful is the internal referral for the firm in question? Does it get you close to a first round? 

It is extremely helpful and greatly boosts your chances. Whatever your “base” odds are (from your profile/resume), your odds are higher with a referral. Get a referral if you can!

2. What is the referral process? Is it internal and attached to your application, or is it an internal note that then asks you to apply? 

Official referrals are through the system. Unofficial ones are getting put in touch with HR in a “favorable” way (i.e. candidate looking to apply who I think could be a great fit, can you talk to them).

Just take the referrer's guidance here.

3. How can I help you get a referral bonus? Do I need to wait for the employee to refer me to apply (do not apply before hand). 

Don't worry about their referral bonus. But they get it once you start working for the firm.

Not matter what, if you're going to get a referral, don't apply before you get the referral, otherwise the referral is useless! (To you, I'm not even talking about signing bonus.

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Anonymous A on Apr 20, 2022

Thanks! I've gotten some responses for "I'll refer you internally, and they send me forward to HR with my resume attached. Sometimes else, they mention pushing it forward internally via the ATS. This will happen at the same company (>1000 consulting employees), so I know that they have both systems in place. Generally, which is the stronger referral?

Francesco
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replied on Apr 20, 2022
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Hi there,

1) How helpful is the internal referral for the firm in question? Does it get you close to a first round? 

Very helpful compared to an application without it, in particular if you have some “issues” in your CV (GPA below average, lack of big brands, etc). There is no disadvantage in applying via referral, so I would always recommend it.

2) What is the referral process? Is it internal and attached to your application, or is it an internal note that then asks you to apply? 

It depends on the company. In some, the person referring you will send your CV to HR and they will contact you from there. In others, you have to mention the person during the application process.

3) How can I help you get a referral bonus? Do I need to wait for the employee to refer me to apply (do not apply before hand). 

As mentioned, the process depends on the firm. You can simply follow what they will tell you.

You can find more on referrals here:

 How to Get an MBB Referral 

Best,

Francesco

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Moritz
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replied on Apr 20, 2022
Unearth your spike & get the offer |ex-McKinsey | 120+ coachings & interviews @ McKinsey | ESADE MBA | Transition Expert

Hi there,

Let me get straight to the point:

1. How helpful is the internal referral for the firm in question? Does it get you close to a first round? Yes, it's the single most powerful tool that anyone can leverage in the application process. It's absolutely worth the extra effort if you're serious about your ambitions!

2. What is the referral process? Is it internal and attached to your application, or is it an internal note that then asks you to apply? The latter - your referee will generally initiate an internal process and provide a recommendation of sorts, which includes your CV/Cover Letter. Once you have someone to support your application via a referral, they will explain this to you.

3. How can I help you get a referral bonus? Do I need to wait for the employee to refer me to apply (do not apply before hand). Let's forget about the bonus. If you apply beforehand you're effectively applying without a referral.

Hope this helps! Best of luck!

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Florian
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replied on Apr 20, 2022
#1 rated McKinsey Case and PEI Coach | 5 years at McKinsey | Mentorship Approach | 120+ McK offers in 18 months

Hey there,

1. Referrals are always helpful, however, they are most helpful when your resume has some weaknesses that might lead to rejection during screening. In such cases, a referral might tip the decision in your favor. For other candidates, they might speed up the application process.

2. This is different for every firm and even sometimes across offices of one firm. It can be either formal with a direct recruiting link, an online tool where your name is entered, you entering the name of your contact while applying or informal with a simple email to HR by the person referring you.

3. Few firms actually pay referral boni. If, they are usually paid once someone is hired + sometimes works there for a couple of months.

All the best!

Cheers,

Florian

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Kurt
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replied on Apr 20, 2022
Conducted over 100 interviews for grads, interns & experienced hires

Typically referral bonus will not be available for students who are graduating (and hence would have been captured through the grad recruiting process anyway) and only offered for experienced hires.

I would focus on ensuring your CV and case are on point, plus doing some networking if you can (but without the transactional pressure of the referral).

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Clara
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replied on Apr 22, 2022
McKinsey | Awarded professor at Master in Management @ IE | MBA at MIT |+180 students coached | Integrated FIT Guide aut

Hello!

If you look in this forum filtering for the word referal, you will find all this info andmore

Cheers, 

Clara

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Anonymous B replied on Apr 20, 2022

I would spend time focusing on things that are in your control: application, case interview, FIT interview, getting to know the firms you’re interested in

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Ian gave the best answer

Ian

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