Is it worth taking an online course on Tableau/Alteryx or is it better to focus on refining excel skills before McKinsey

MBB McKinsey
New answer on Oct 16, 2020
8 Answers
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Anonymous A asked on Oct 07, 2020

Dear PrepLounge Community,

Starting as a Business Analyst at McKinsey next month.

I want to be on top of my game. Is it worth learning these advanced software tool (Tableau, Alteryx) before?

Perhaps refining my financial modelling skills would be more impactful?

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Robert
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replied on Oct 07, 2020
McKinsey offers w/o final round interviews - 100% risk-free - 10+ years MBB coaching experience - Multiple book author

Hi Anonymous,

Just don't forget that subject-matter related hard skills are only one component to be on the top of the game.

That being said, yes, learn all 3 of them and they will help a lot. Basics should not take more than 1-2 weeks, and the rest you will learn while using it during real-life situations.

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

Robert

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Ian
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replied on Oct 07, 2020
MBB | 100% personal interview success rate (8/8) and 95% candidate success rate | Personalized interview prep

Honestly? Learn all 3!

Tableau should take you 2-3 days...it's really intuitive.

The fundamentals of Alteryx should take you 1-2 weeks as should getting thoroughly advanced in Excel.

Mind you, you'll also learn on the job and have excellent access to training modules, courses, and hand-ons training :)

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Kobi
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replied on Oct 15, 2020
McKinsey interviewer|EM @ McKinsey & Company | 100% fit interview success rate | Coached +20 candidates | Personalized interview

I actually disagree with most of the answers here. You should focus on mastering Excel and Power point. All the rest are nice to have and you will not really require them in most studies.

Get to a place in which you feel comfrotable to build a robust and complex excel model from scratch. Get to a place in which you can build a 10-page ppt deck on some topic in a few hours by yourself that will look decent.

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Anonymous B on Oct 15, 2020

Good point, any tipps on how to get to mastering excel models? Online courses are sometimes not very specific for consulting

Mehdi
Expert
replied on Oct 09, 2020
BCG | Received offers from all MBB & Tier 1Firms | Supporting you secure your top tier consulting offer

Hi there,

I would advise you to master all the three of them. Excel would help you meet the basic expectations for Analysts, while Tableau/Alteryx would definitely make you standout!

All the best,

Mehdi

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Udayan
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replied on Oct 08, 2020
Top rated McKinsey Case & PEI coach/Multiple real offers/McKinsey EM in New York /6 years McKinsey recruiting experience

Agreed with everyone - all 3 should do the trick. If you had to prioritize do modeling first then visual basic, Tableau and Alteryx

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Ken
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replied on Oct 07, 2020
Ex-McKinsey London final round interviewer

Although you will have plenty of opportunities to learn once you join McKinsey, being comfortable with Alteryx will go a long way as client data is becoming larger and more complex as we speak. I recall coutless situtations where we used Alteryx to process/clean the data so that we can run quick analyses in Excel, etc. Your EM/team will appreciate greatly appreicate this and Tableau is always the icing on the cake but I would say less critical.

Knowing the basics of financial modellling is helpful but may not be super relevant unless you find yourself on projects (e.g., private equity due dilligence). I know many BA/Associates who finish their 2-3 years having never built a financial model!

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Henning
Expert
replied on Oct 07, 2020
Bain | passed >15 MBB interviews as a candidate

You'll need all three of them to succeed on today's consulting world, so ideally do all three. In any case, teh firm will give you ample opportunity (and pressure) to master them.

To help prioritize what to spend your time on: Excel skills have the potential to embarass, but few people are impressed when you can built a killer model worthy of an investment banker. With Tableau and Alteryx it's the other way around, so

  • Make sure you don't embarass yourself with Excel, but (for now) don't spend the time to become a rockstar - you'll have plenty of opportunity to further refine your skills on the job
  • Then learn the basics of Tableau and Alteryx to impress your new colleagues with your wizardry ;)
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Anonymous replied on Oct 16, 2020

Hi,

Cant emphasize enough on the importance of excel and power point skills in consulting world. But these skills come handy only after you get through and start working as a consultant within the firm. These skills are easy to get and 1--4 weeks of preparation can take you from simple to advanced user. And as you start applying the skills you get to learn more.

But focus more on this when you have got the offer letter and you got some time before onboarding.

Thanks

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Robert gave the best answer

Robert

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McKinsey offers w/o final round interviews - 100% risk-free - 10+ years MBB coaching experience - Multiple book author
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