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What is your experience as a Civil engineering background to consulting?

Civil engineer CV Experienced Hire
New answer on Oct 13, 2020
3 Answers
1.2 k Views
Anonymous A asked on Oct 12, 2020

Hi All,

I have 6 years experience working as a structural design engineer (buildings), without an MBA. That means i'll be joining as an experienced hire.


  1. What particular skills did you highlight that got the attention of recruiter?
  2. Apart from MBA, do attending financial seminars from target universities such as CORe course from HBS boost the marketability?
  3. Were the case interviews tailored towards your industry?
  4. How many FIT questions were you posed that related to testing your industry knowledge?

Thank you.

Your responses are greatly appreciated

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Anonymous replied on Oct 12, 2020

Hi Anonymous!

Although you didn't specify, I'm assuming you mean the MBB type consulting firms, rather than more specialized firms. All answers below are written with that in mind:

  1. As a 6-yr engineer without an MBA, the main question that people have is around your business judgement. They will assume you're good with math and in your specific industrial expertise, but question whether you understand how economies work, a bit of finance, accounting, strategy, etc. So highlight any experience in company management, P&L responsibility, etc.
  2. Yes, this helps to close the (perceived) skill gap described above.
  3. No - if at all, they would want to test how you do in cases that are not tailored to your industry.
  4. None. FIT is around your personal fit, not your subject matter expertise. And MBB don't hire you for your engineering industry experience, so don't expect any deep dive into your skills.

I know this is probably not what you were hoping for, but still hope it helps. To get MBB's attention you'll need to position yourself as a generalist that is able to quicky adapt to new industries and build an understanding of drivers that shape a previously unknown industry quickly. That may feel superfical in your deep industrial background, but this is the way strategy consulting works.

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Content Creator
replied on Oct 12, 2020
#1 Coach for Sessions (4.500+) | 1.500+ 5-Star Reviews | Proven Success (➡ | Ex BCG | 10Y+ Coaching

Hi there,

  1. The key skills consulting companies look for are leadership, drive, problem solving, ability to influence others and to communicate well with key stakeholders, in a context of excellence. This should be expressed in a quantifiable way in your CV, showing the action taken and the results achieved
  2. Yes, big brands always help in the CV screening. But what will help you most is an internal referral
  3. Cases are not tailored to your industry. You may get cases related to a specific practice you are applying to though (eg digital). Even in that case you will have cases unrelated to the practice area.
  4. Industry knowledge is only sometimes tested if you apply as an experienced hire for specific practices or expert areas (eg digital, O&G). For generalist positions for Associates (the one you will probably target) it is not tested


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Content Creator
replied on Oct 13, 2020
#1 BCG coach | MBB | Tier 2 | Digital, Tech, Platinion | 100% personal success rate (8/8) | 95% candidate success rate

1. Regardless of your background, you should be looking to highlight the same skills: Problem-solving, analytical capability, leadership, driving change, teamwork, diverse experiences, client management

2. Yes. This definitely helps, especially if they're a target school and you can throw on that brand

3. If you are coming in as an experienced hire (into a specialized role), then yes (mostly). If you are coming in as a generalist, then no.

4. FIT would generally be defined as stories to understand traits like those in #1. However, you should expect to get a number of discussion-like questions that are both fit and case. As in "How would you go about setting up x". Or "how do you think about x". With x being a very relevant topic in the industry

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