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BCG Gamma or McKinsey Digital: The Differences

BCG consulting Digital Gamma MBB McKinsey
New answer on Oct 11, 2023
11 Answers
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Anonymous A asked on Nov 04, 2017

Hi PrepLounge,

I haven't had much luck searching on the internet, but do any of you know the difference between McKinsey Digital and BCG Gamma?
For what I know, McKinsey Digital is broader whereas BCG Gamma is the specific discipline of data science... but can you maybe support here?

Also, if you were to start in one of the places today - where would you go?
Tech/Digital is really up and coming and it seems that BCG Gamma is sort of front office Data Scientists, which seems amazingly cool. But again, I am not really sure how they compare and how technical McKinsey Digital actually is for a consultant - whether it is the same work under two different names?


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Julien replied on Jan 04, 2018

I don’t know any detail about McK Digital but I have a fairly good view of what BCG Gamma is: I am a data scientist there.

BGC Gamma is a virtual office within BCG. We are not a back office, we are data scientists with strategy consulting skills (more people with MSc or PhD than MBA). We are fully involved in the client relationship, participate to client meetings, steering committees etc. Some cases are 100% Gamma but we often work jointly with BCG classic (mixed case teams).

We deliver custom data science-based solutions (machine learning, numerical optimization...) to our clients to allow them to take advantage of the huge impact data analytics and AI are having on the business world: pricing optimization, personalized marketing, more dynamic logistic, etc. We create the data science models, program the software (in Python or R essentially) and deliver working solutions, not only advices and slide decks. To build those solutions we need to understand both data science and business.

Our career progression is globally align with the rest of BCG. We actually have consultants from classic BCG transferring to Gamma. There is a partner track at Gamma.

I hope this helps.

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Content Creator
replied on Oct 11, 2023
ex Jr. Partner McKinsey |Senior Interviewer| Real Feedback & Free Homework between sessions|Harvard Coach|10+ Experience


McKinsey Digital:

  • McKinsey Digital is known for offering a broader range of digital and technology consulting services, including areas like digital strategy, technology implementation, and digital transformation.
  • Consultants in McKinsey Digital work on a wide variety of projects that may extend beyond data science and analytics. You might find yourself involved in areas like digital marketing, e-commerce, and more.
  • While data and analytics are important components, the work in McKinsey Digital can vary widely depending on the specific project and client needs.

BCG Gamma:

  • BCG Gamma is more specialized in advanced data analytics and data science. It's often associated with more technical, quantitative, and data-driven work.
  • BCG Gamma teams work on tasks like building predictive models, machine learning, and other advanced analytics applications. Their projects are often more technical in nature.
  • Consultants in BCG Gamma are typically referred to as "data scientists," emphasizing their focus on data and analytics.
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replied on Nov 06, 2017
McKinsey / Accenture Alum / Got all BIG3 offers / Harvard Business School


BCG Gamma is basically data science. It will be similar to any data science job in technology. You'll be working with SQL, Python, etc. programming and analyzing data. Its career progression is closer to research than consulting.

McKinsey Digital is a Former BTO. Working there has the following differences with a generalist:

1) More training - from my experience BTO guys were constantly traveling

2) Separate staffing - you will have a different staffing coordinator who has to approve all your projects. In general, it gives you more opportunities since you can also be staffed on generalist projects.

3) Different project types - BTO is working on IT strategy, Agile transformations, etc. It also depends on the country where you apply - while in US you can expect many BTO projects, in other countries most of your projects will be in various industries and functions

4) Career opportunities - again, depending on the country, the path to the partner may be easier in BTO since you have a separate group of people supporting you and dedicated projects. It may also be difficult as well if you don't have a proper BTO organization pyramid in your office

Good luck!

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replied on Nov 04, 2017


Both McKinsey Digital and BCG Gamma are heavily invested in tech. However, let me clarify that BCG Gamma is an extension of BCG just like BCG DV(Digital Ventures). Everything in BCG Gamma or DV would be precise, developing cases or platform(as per the need). It involves less of consulting/strategy work. BCG TAO(Technology Advantage office), which is a vritual office within BCG, is a practice that involves in consulting/strategy work related to tech/digital sector. BCG TAO leverages the expertise of Gamma and DV. Again BCG, Gamma and DV are three very different things.

McK Digital is a practice within McK. As per my understanding it's not a seperate entetity like DV or Gamma. And I belive it's similar to BCG TAO.

To answer your question - Gamma is very unique/ niche capability which BCG uses and here you will develop data science skills at very advanced level. In McK Digital you will be working as strategy conusltant, so you can work both the horizaontally and vertically in digital sector.

Hope it helps.

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Anonymous replied on Dec 22, 2022

Worth noting that now Gamma has been incorporated into BCG X which has Digital Ventures within it, coming off of the growth in the Digital market. Definitely Gamma still has that “front office data scientist” feel and, from those I spoke with, sounds like a really exciting place to be!

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Content Creator
replied on May 28, 2020
McKinsey | Awarded professor at Master in Management @ IE | MBA at MIT |+180 students coached | Integrated FIT Guide aut


To add on top what´s been said, the homologue in Mck from BCG Gamma would be McK Advanced Analytics, not McK Digital.



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Content Creator
updated an answer on Sep 05, 2021
Former BCG | Case author for efellows book | Experience in 6 consultancies (Stern Stewart, Capgemini, KPMG, VW Con., Hor


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Graeme replied on Jul 01, 2019
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Anonymous B replied on Jan 04, 2018

This is helpful. How about McKinsey New Ventures? Can someone explains a bit more? Is it similar to BCG DV?

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Anonymous A replied on Nov 06, 2017

Thanks a lot for the answers.

However, 2 specific questions:

1) Is it fair to assume that McKinsey Digital is more "technical" than BCG TAO, since McK Digital also include units that do prototyping, etc.? The assumption is that you as a "generalist" consultant within McK Digital will be staffed with these more technical people.

2) I don't understand that "BCG GAMMA" is more a research path? From what I understand BCG just developed a partner track for BCG GAMMA as well... so I see it more as a competitor to Palantir? That means, very front-office data scientists.. am I wrong?

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Anonymous A replied on Nov 06, 2017


Does that mean that BCG Gamma is more of a back office role? Where will it be the strategy consultant doing more of the client work?

I am in close contact with both places, but I have a really hard time figuring out exactly what they do.

Also, because McK Digital is an umbrella also covering Digital Labs, Quantum Black etc. I would assume it to be more "technical" than the TAO at BCG?

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