I always get rejected after online assesments- what can I do next time?

BCG McKinsey and Bain London McKinsey numerical online test Online Assessment
New answer on Dec 05, 2021
5 Answers
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Anonymous A asked on Dec 02, 2021

I applied to a total of 15 consultancies this recruitment cycle. 13 of the 15 so far have rejected me after I’ve taken their psychometric/verbal&numerical assessment (prior to interview). I believe the problem lies within my assessment results as I’ve had 2 coaches review my CV already. 

I’m wondering if I choose to apply for consulting again in next year’s cycle what I other steps I can do to ensure I pass these assessment and what exactly is the bar/score needed to pass these assessments? 

I have already tried doing multiple practice test, GMAT past papers and have used different guides for the gamified assessment (e.g. the Imbellus guide available on preplounge). I have done a lot of case practice and feel fairly confident in it so I just feel a little let down I don’t have the opportunity to interview.

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replied on Dec 02, 2021
Current Bain & Company Project Leader and interviewer | 250+ interviews conducted | 6+ years of coaching and mentoring

Hi there,

First of all, I am sorry to hear about the rejections!

This is indeed an interesting question which is probably relevant for quite a lot of users, so I am happy to provide my perspective on it:

  • Generally speaking, even if you get rejected after conducting the online assessments, it might still be that it is the rest of your application files and/ or missing referrals that lead to the rejection. As such, I would advise you to find someone to have a look at all components of your application.
  • Given your information it seems to me that you have simply not practiced enough since written arithmetic still seems to be the key underlying issue (given that time constraint is mainly driven by taking too long to find out the correct answer). I would advise you to properly work on your written arithmetic skills, not just for the online assessment since you will equally be tested on it in case studies.
  • Of course, you may re-apply next year - given that you are still interested in getting into consulting. Unfortunately, no one will be able/ allowed to tell you the exact thresholds for passing those tests (which would still not be meaningful given you do not know the correct answers).

In case you want a more detailed discussion on how to best prepare all components of your application and interview process in a structured manner, please feel free to contact me directly.

I hope this helps,


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Content Creator
replied on Dec 02, 2021
#1 Coach for Sessions (4.000+) | 1.500+ 5-Star Reviews | Proven Success (➡ InterviewOffers.com) | Ex BCG | 9Y+ Coaching

Hi there,

Sorry to hear about the rejections.

It is difficult to comment without knowing more about what exactly you are feeling you are doing wrong in the tests. It could be any of the following:

  • Not finishing in time
  • Wrong math
  • Misunderstanding the questions
  • Lack of familiarity with the format (eg – BCG Chatbot)
  • Pressure due to time constraint

Also, many tests are now quite different (eg Imbellus Solve vs BCG Chatbot), therefore the issue may not always be the same.

In case you have specific questions on the gamified assessments such as the Imbellus please feel free to PM me, I would be happy to review your performance and the possible improvements.



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Anonymous A on Dec 02, 2021

I think wrong math and time constraint are main issues. I'm not naturally inclined to maths especially if the answers are multiple choice (as there are no marks for working out marks). However, I don't know what I can do to improve this as I always do a minimum of 8 different practice tests before I take each assessment.

replied on Dec 05, 2021
Bain | EY-Parthenon | Roland Berger | FIT | Market Sizing | Former Head Recruiter

If you are not naturally inclined to math, I would start to question whether (or why) you really want this job, as this is a key requirement for MBB. If you have issues with performing on maths under pressure, you won't have a long life in consulting.

Anyway, if you think the problem is your arithmetics and performing under pressure… this is a hard skill. You have done several practice tests, so if you think this is your weak spot then… it is your weak spot. The fact that it is a hard skill means that you can improve if you practice enough. 

But when you talk about a skill that you develop for years and years during your life… doing a test 8 times is very far away from sufficient practice. You need significant (daily) practice until you become really good at it. 

You have to understand that MBB is not looking for people who are “ok'ish” at math. They are looking for the top 1-2% (on this and on many other things). So even good doesn't cut it. You have to be great. If you are not naturally inclined and even have issues with multiple option questions, then you are very far away from where you need to be. If you want to make this happen, you'd better start practicing daily.

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Content Creator
replied on Dec 02, 2021
Accenture, Deloitte | Precision Case Prep | Experienced Interviewer & Career Coach | 15 years professional experience


I can understand your frustration. Most likely you are struggling to perform under pressure in these assessments. I am sure your CV and rest of application are in decent shape. 

I suggest you take a pause and reflect on whats going on- mindset, nervousness or perhaps this Consulting track is just not the right fit for you. Pay some attention and look at this. Sounds like you have invested enough time and effort and are not getting the results. So, its time to do this differently.

Please have a look at these two articles for some helpful tips & guidance:

All the best.

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Content Creator
replied on Dec 02, 2021
MBB | 100% personal interview success rate (8/8) and 95% candidate success rate | Personalized interview prep

Hi there,

Can you send me through your CV so I can take a quick look?

You can absolutely try again next year (and don't let this year's results dissuade you!).

To be clear, were these assessments part of your application (i.e. via MBA recruiting) and prior to you being invited to interview or were you invited to interview and then given the assessments?

If it was the former, then resume, networking, and the test all play a role…you need to improve all of them (and, sometimes, it's just luck of draw).

If it was the later, then you are indeed right that you aren't testing properly. I don't know what wrong here as I haven't assessed you, but my advice would be to 1) Take more practice tests (ones that actually give you a score and grade you) and 2) Get a coach to actually assess your logical reasoning on these tests.

Best of luck!

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Anonymous A on Dec 02, 2021

Hi, yes the assessments were all done prior to interviews. Some assessments were part of the application (sent to all applicants) and others were done after the pre-screening of the CV + cover letter. In regards to getting a coach to asses my logical reasoning, would this just be a normal math teacher?

Ian on Dec 03, 2021

Oh no, a math teacher definitely is not what you want! For the purely quant reasoning tests, sure. However, any of the case-based assessments (E.g. BCG Casey Chatbot) you need a case coach!

Hagen gave the best answer


Current Bain & Company Project Leader and interviewer | 250+ interviews conducted | 6+ years of coaching and mentoring
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