How much would a Big 4 consulting role help in MBB recruitment?

Bain mbb BCG BCG McKinsey and Bain big four London mbb big4 McKinsey recruiting students UK
New answer on May 07, 2022
7 Answers
691 Views
Anonymous A asked on May 06, 2022

Hi, I'm curious about how much would a Big 4 management consulting role help in MBB recruitment at the analyst level? 

I'm currently in my last year of university and have managed to get a management consulting role at a Big 4 (not strategy arm). I will try to get recruited for MBB again (2023 intake)  later this year. Last year I failed at the testing part (SOVA, Imbellus…) 

I was wondering how much of a help a Big 4 role would help as I also have a MSc in Finance offer. If the Big 4 role isn't of much help I would rather take the MSc as it would give me more time to do the recruiting process and I would be able to freely attend interviews and not worry about taking to many leave days. 

Overview of answers

Upvotes
  • Upvotes
  • Date ascending
  • Date descending
Best answer
Francesco
Expert
Content Creator
replied on May 07, 2022
#1 Coach for Sessions (4.000+) | 1.400+ 5-Star Reviews | Proven Success (➡ InterviewOffers.com) | Ex BCG | 9Y+ Coaching

Hi there,

The MSc in Finance could help if:

  • It allows you to target a more senior position compared to Bachelor + Working experience (in some countries MBB require a Master as well). Given you already applied in the past, I assume that’s not the case
  • It allows to intern in a more prestigious role in strategy (eg in Tier 2). However, you won't know this until you apply for the new roles

If that’s not the case, the Big 4 role could possibly be better. It depends on the following:

  • The work experience is useful for your CV (you don’t already have other work experiences similar/superior)
  • The transition from that Big 4 to strategy is possible. In some countries a Big 4 role unrelated to strategy may have a negative effect on your CV. You can double-check that on LinkedIn by looking if other people who worked for that Big 4 in that division did make a transition to consulting

Additionally, be sure to choose a job that you like rather than just consider what it could lead to as next steps. Even in case the Big4 role is better in terms of moving to MBB, there is no reason to join and work there for a few years if you don't like the job.

In terms of the tests, you can find some tips to prepare:

I would also recommend to look for a referral for the new applications. You can find some tips here:

Hope this helps,

Francesco

Was this answer helpful?
Clara
Expert
Content Creator
replied on May 07, 2022
McKinsey | Awarded professor at Master in Management @ IE | MBA at MIT |+180 students coached | Integrated FIT Guide aut

Hello!

In short: it would help A LOT, particularly in the consulting branches. Any chances that you can still recruit for those? Even if the usual recruiting cycle it´s done, having an offer for the Big4 firm -even in other verticals- can give you a good bargaining position, if well played. 

Hope it helps!

Cheers, 

Clara

Was this answer helpful?
Ian
Expert
Content Creator
replied on May 07, 2022
MBB | 100% personal interview success rate (8/8) and 95% candidate success rate | Personalized interview prep

Hi there,

First, congrats on both offers!

There's no getting around this: Quite logically, a consulting role is going to get you closer to MBB than a non-consulting role…I'm sure I don't need to explain to you why!

If your ultimately goal is MBB, then Big4 significantly adds to your resume+network in the MBB realm. Finance takes your towards finance.

That said, be careful in making a choice like this just for a “maybe”. Big4 is not a guarantee to MBB (far from it). So, your future might be Big4 full stop. Come in with the mindset/expectation - if you want to do consulting, then be happy with Big4 and give it your all - MBB should be the “bonus” at the end!

Was this answer helpful?
Moritz
Expert
Content Creator
replied on May 06, 2022
Unearth your spike & get the offer |ex-McKinsey | 120+ coachings & interviews @ McKinsey | ESADE MBA | Transition Expert

Hi there,

There's a great number of people in MBB who used BIG4 as a stepping stone. This should be encouraging!

However, it's just one aspect of the various elements that have to come together on your CV. The other elements being an excellent academic record, perhaps some entrepreneurial work, extra-curricular activities where you demonstrated some leadership, etc.

Bottom line, BIG4 works great in combination but not necessarily alone.

Hope this helps a bit. Best of luck!

Was this answer helpful?
Udayan
Expert
Content Creator
updated an answer on May 06, 2022
Top rated McKinsey Case & PEI coach/Multiple real offers/McKinsey EM in New York /6 years McKinsey recruiting experience

People join MBB after management consulting at smaller firms all the time. Realistically, your odds are much higher if you do management consulting at the Big 4 followed by an MBA at a top 10 school (for which admission should be pretty easy once you complete 2-3 years at the big 4).

However, many people also just complete a few years at other firms and transfer over directly to MBB as an Associate. You will need to network to get recommendations but these should not be very difficult to get. 

I would not recommend MSc in finance for MBB, that is not at all a target program and you will be wasting both time and money if you do not want to end up in finance after it.

Best,

Udayan

(edited)

Was this answer helpful?
Cristian
Expert
Content Creator
replied on May 06, 2022
#1 rated and most recommended McKinsey Coach | 97% success rate (tracked) | Honest feedback: no sugar-coating

Hi there,

A big 4 consulting role can help significantly more than a Masters. 

I know multiple candidates who didn't pass the screening on the grounds of not having sufficient ‘consulting experience or interest’. Basically you want your CV to say two things:

  1. You have a long-term interest in consulting - proved by these x experiences of working / collaborating / whatever
  2. You have consultant-like skills - proved by having worked / volunteered in …

Additionally, doing the consultant job develops your critical thinking and structuring abilities, which then helps you be more prepared for the interview. 

Was this answer helpful?
Adi
Expert
Content Creator
replied on May 07, 2022
Accenture, Deloitte | Precision Case Prep | Experienced Interviewer & Career Coach | 15 years professional experience

Any meaningful real world consulting experience is worth more than anything else. So, the BIG 4 role will really help you if you want to go further. Its as simple as that.

All the best.

Was this answer helpful?
Francesco gave the best answer

Francesco

Content Creator
#1 Coach for Sessions (4.000+) | 1.400+ 5-Star Reviews | Proven Success (➡ InterviewOffers.com) | Ex BCG | 9Y+ Coaching
4,067
Meetings
28,546
Q&A Upvotes
297
Awards
5.0
1494 Reviews