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What's the difference btw Oliver Wyman and other second tier?

2-tier consulting oliverwyman secondtier wyman
New answer on Jan 26, 2024
4 Answers
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Anonymous A asked on Feb 05, 2019

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replied on Jan 26, 2024
Ex-Oliver Wyman Associate Partner - +300 interviews - now Strategy Director

You may say is a second tier firm…based on what? on size/revenue? then I agree.

OW comes from different acquisitions/mergers and since then been growing at relevant rates, though the gap vs. MBB will never be closed (in size)

OW unique proposition is the super specialization it has in specific industries and even topics within. It is able to tackle with excellence niche topics that are highly relevant in certain or accross industries (e.g., FS, TMT, Aviation, Automotive…)

As the other answer mentions, it is a highly analytical approach and also very hands-on. That is, in addition to slide decks production, we roll up our sleeves and work hand in hand with the client, implementing, operating and delivering results and impact. I can say that in the vast majority of my engagements at OW we both made the plan/strategy and the implementation with a team skillset difficult to replicate (strong expertise in the matter).

We also bring in a global staffing approach which is a great value prop for incoming consultants as well as for the clients. I've done plenty of global strategy projects where we leverage staff from accross the world and hence tons of expertise/different market inputs. the typical project is not in your home office country, rather in a different country with consultants from different parts of the world

I've found ourselves always competing with MBB at the same level, we are even more expensive in some cases due to the global approach, sometimes we lost sometime won.

My experience at OW and my way to see it, is that it is a first tier firm in terms of everything except for the size.

But this are just my two cents





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Anonymous updated the answer on Feb 05, 2019

A few differentiators at OW:

1) OW FS Consultants are the most expensive Management Consultants - following the firm’s specialised expertise across FIs, fees for OW FS Consultants are typically at a ~20% premium of MBB Consultants. This significantly drives firm growth, and accommodates generous project budgets.

2) Quantiatively focused - OW’s work is some of the most numerically orientated in the industry, as reflected by the frequent use of advanced quantitative platforms (e.g. many offices now require Python and SQL training for new hires, and are more regularly leveraged on projects).

3) MBA Desert - relative to other firms, OW hires limited numbers of MBA graduates in favour of either Undergraduates at the junior level, or Experienced Hires at senior levels to being specific content expertise to the firm. Similarly, the firm does less to encourage its Consultants to pursue MBAs than competitors and does not require this step in career progression (although sponsorship is still provided for consultants who value the MBA experience).

Feel free to contact me directly if you have any more specific questions about OW!


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replied on Feb 05, 2019
Ex-MBB, Experienced Hire; I will teach you not only the how, but also the why of case interviews

Hopefully someone with direct knowledge of OW chimes in. Fwiw, my opinion as a former MBB consultant is OW is in the middle of the tier-2 pack, nothing special about them. That's not bad at all by the way, but I have never understood their unique value proposition.

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replied on Feb 05, 2019
McKinsey Senior EM & BCG Consultant | Interviewer at McK & BCG for 7 years | Coached 350+ candidates secure MBB offers

One additional notion: Oliver Wyman's staffing model is far more international/global that what you will ever experience in most other Tier2 firms.

Cheers, Sidi

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Oscar gave the best answer


Ex-Oliver Wyman Associate Partner - +300 interviews - now Strategy Director
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