Singapore or London?

Career start London Singapore
New answer on Sep 01, 2020
7 Answers
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Anonymous A asked on Feb 07, 2020

I am a Singaporean student in a target London university. I've seen many favourable comments on Singapore here and it got me wondering whether it is not the best decision to start a consulting career in London and that I should be starting my career directly in Singapore.

My initial plan was to stay in London for 3-5 years and then go home. Should I be planning to start in Singapore directly? What are the differences/ pros & cons?

Thank you

(edited)

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Francesco
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replied on Feb 08, 2020
#1 Coach for Sessions (4.000+) | 1.400+ 5-Star Reviews | Proven Success (➡ InterviewOffers.com) | Ex BCG | 9Y+ Coaching

Hi Anonymous,

below are my considerations:

Plus of Singapore

  • Build network earlier on in your target location
  • Great position for future growth – all the countries in SEA are growing substantially
  • Higher salary due to lower taxes
  • Possibly lower competition due to visa requirements for non-PR (however demand and supply fluctuate and are seasonal)

Minus of Singapore

  • Seems you are looking for an international working experience for some reasons which Singapore won’t offer
  • May be more challenging to find referrals for your application since there are probably more alumni of your school working in London

I would personally choose Singapore, but I am biased (I chose to relocate here;) ).

Best,
Francesco

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Anonymous A on Feb 08, 2020

Hi Francesco, you're right on that I am looking for some international experience. For some reason, Singaporeans seem to have the mentality that having a few years of western working exp in places like London and New York will greatly improve your career when you return home. I am born and raised Singaporean and only left to study university, so I won't have any visa issues at all. I am biased to Singapore too because I love my country but I am trying to find out whether working in London to have a "career boost" is a myth or a fact. Thank you!

Luca
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replied on Feb 09, 2020
BCG |NASA | SDA Bocconi & Cattolica partner | GMAT expert 780/800 score | 200+ students coached

Hello,

In addition to the point mentioned by other coaches, you should also consider where you have more possibilities to get a referral.
Bear in mind that you will have the chance to change your office once that you enter a firm.

Best,
Luca

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Daniel
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replied on Feb 07, 2020
McKinsey / ex-Interviewer at McKinsey / I will coach you to rock those interviews

Just something I know from the personal experience:

  • Those of my friends who work in Singapore have clients all over Asia, so it's really opening up a lot of opportunities for you in the region if you want to stay there over long-term.
  • All of my friends who work in London work almost exclusively with the UK clients, so it's really narrow regional focus as far as I understand.
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Anonymous replied on Sep 01, 2020

Hi there,

Not sure if you have already made up your mind. Just adding 2 points to others.

1) Singapore is a very competitive office too; but as a Singaporean, you have a big advantage (for gov reason we locals know)

2) International experience at the starting of your consulting career is not that important. You would very likely be working in the SEA region rather than just Singapore anyway. If you perform well, you would have multiple chances to go to an international office in other regions for a year or so, during your consulting career.

Best,

Emily

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Clara
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replied on Feb 10, 2020
McKinsey | Awarded professor at Master in Management @ IE | MBA at MIT |+180 students coached | Integrated FIT Guide aut

Hello!

On top of what other coaches commented, bear in mind taxes!

Singapore office is very very demanded in MBB due to the low taxes paid vs. Europe, which makes the neto much higher!

Best regards,

Clara

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Antonello
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replied on Feb 08, 2020
McKinsey | MBA professor for consulting interviews

Hi,
in addition to the point of Francesco, I would say that competition during the application process in the London office is higher than Singapore and one of the 3 most competitive in the world.

Best,
Antonello

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Vlad
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replied on Feb 07, 2020
McKinsey / Accenture Alum / Got all BIG3 offers / Harvard Business School

Hi,

I think that you are at the point of your life when:

  • You will be no longer looking for the job using resume / applications. You will be either using referrals or your network / clients will "Pull" you for a job instead
  • You have to start building your network and stay in one location for as long as possible

From that perspective you should stay in Singapore if that's your long term goal

Best

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Francesco gave the best answer

Francesco

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