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Which job to take?

 
#1 Which job to take?
06/01/2007 11:53

Davinia

Hi all, I've been offered a starting position as analyst in financial services with ACN but have also received an offer for the group leadership scheme with a Lloyds TSB. This is a management type position (not consulting!). I believe that consulting is for me but am put off working for ACN by all the negativity surrounding recent and current recruits. Any advice? Cheers

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#2 RE: Which job to take?
06/01/2007 12:14

Igor to Davinia (#1)

Youre comparing apples and oranges.

The accenture job is going to be purely IT focused. It will be IT consulting - not banking. Not mangerial, not strategic, not high level thinking ( unless its SBA youre talking about)

The Lyods programme will develop some good managerial expertise and banking experience. I would go for this one. You can always move from Lyods banking to consulting - unlikely you will be able to change the other way.

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#3 RE: Which job to take?
06/01/2007 12:29

Davinia to Igor (#2)

Thanks Igor, I appreciate your comments. I am excited by a career in MC. My main concern is the negativity surrounding ACN. Do you know if this all justified? Thanks again.

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#4 RE: Which job to take?
06/01/2007 12:51

Igor to Davinia (#3)

Again: you are not about to embark in MC ( management consulting ) - you are about to enter IT consulting. Be VERY adamant you clearly understand the difference! Immagine what a shock otherwise 6 weeks in when you realise its not what you thought!

You will always have negative rep against a market leader with 140,000 employees. I personally dont think now is the right time to join Acn. Attrition is super high, salaries are frozen, people havent been promoted and morale is rock bottom.

You do understand that your role in IT for FS will be testing computer systems for retail banks / insurance companies and the LSE? Get ready to learn a lot of HTML and Java! But if this is what rocks your boat, best of luck.

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#5 RE: Which job to take?
06/01/2007 12:56

Not True to Igor (#2)

Igor, I disagree wholeheartedly with your comment about not being able to make a move from ACN to an industry line management role. For many people this is the path they take after they have had enough of the Consulting lifestyle. Granted that ACN is not a Mckinsey and you don't see many of their alumni going on to be global CEO's, nonetheless many when they do leave ACN, take quite senior positions in blue-chip organisation.

As someone who joined ACN's grad programme almost 10 years ago, I can say that about 80% of my start group has since left ACN. Those who have stayed are now knocking on the door for Senior Exec (Partner) and those who have left, are in a number of senior hard hitting roles in a number of different industries. Myself, I am a VP in the IBD division of a US I-Bank. So it does happen. Looking at the alumni directory, there are a number of others like myself who have went into Banking (both retail and I-Bank).

Davina, all the best and enjoy St. Charles. You'll have a blast and make life-long friends. Hey, I even met my wife there!

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#6 RE: Which job to take?
06/01/2007 13:10

Davinia to Not True (#5)

Thank you both for your comments. They really are appreciated. One final question.

Do you recommend FS as an operating group with regards to:

1) career development within ACN

2) Career opportunity if I were to leave ACN

3) Work/life balance comapred ith other operating groups.

Thankyou again for your help!

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#7 RE: Which job to take?
06/01/2007 14:00

Anon to Davinia (#6)

Davinia,

Go the Lloyds route. I can almost guarantee you it would give you more variety and money in the long run.

All my friends that work for ACN aren't excited by it or downright hate it.

All they say is "it is a good name to have on your CV".

I was once on one of the LloydsTSB Leadership programme but left because it was not the one I wanted to join. Even the programme I joined has been discontinued now. But the other programmes are quite good. I am now in MC.

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#8 RE: Which job to take?
06/01/2007 14:21

FSKnowledge to Davinia (#6)

Career developement is exactly the same no matter what operating group you join. One thing which does vary more in FS is the typical working hours- FS bods generally do 20-30% more hours than other OGs due to the nature of FS work at IBs and banks.
The FS OG also tends to be that little more competetive and cut throat, which suits lots of people but probably not all.
Career opportunity wise, you can *probably* move on to a better paid job when you leave FS than if you are from aother OG- again related to industries which you will be experienced in [IB, banking, insurance which traditionally pay superior salaries to Govt, products, resources companies etc].
As for the negativity surrounding ACN, basically most of it is true, but tends to be overstated:
1- Salaries arent great, but are in 75 percentile for industry [so therefore not really 'Bad'.
Attrition is a problem (+30%), but management have recogised this and gave off cycle pay rises in decemeber 06. They have also re-intorduced March promotions which has gone down quite well with staff.
Promotions arent the most meritocratic thing in the world, but generally if you are doing well, are bright, work hard, you will get promoted on time.
As stated in this string, ACN on the cv is actually pretty well respected and my peers who left the company are generally earning more money (generally 5-10k minimum upscaling in salary) at good companies.
One which is the major issue with the company is the way it markets itself to new analysts/graduates- we are an IT company and for the large part, not an MC as per the brochures. Those analysts who join with expectations of providing advice to CEOs at board meetings are going to be dissapointed. Generally you will be doing IT related work for the first few years of your career here. This can vary from testing a specific application component (dry!) to some more interesting analysis work. Whatever you do, you gain good transferable skills, e.g. leadership, teamwork, communication, problem solving, but none of the strategic drivel which the ACN marketing machine suggests you will get. (obvious exception is is you join the SB&A team).
So to conclude, ACN has many pitfalls, but it is still not *that* bad a place to work, esp if you are young and arent sure of your long term career plans. It will provide you with more exit options than the LLoyds program [without question].
Good luck with your decision.

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#9 RE: Which job to take?
06/01/2007 14:33

Davinia to FSKnowledge (#8)

RE: FSKNOWLEDGE

Thank you so much for such a detailed and balanced answer. It is greatly appreciated and will certainly be considered when making my decision. So is Accenture actively striving to improve morale and staff working environments at the moment and in the coming years? Any further comments from any parties will be greatly appreciated. Regards.

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