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Interview with Accenture Technology Solutions

 
#1 Interview with Accenture Technology Solutions
29/04/2003 00:00

CJ Lee

Hi,

I have recently applied for a software engineer position at Accenture Technology Solutions and I am now on my way to doing a second round. I am applying as an experienced professional and I am wondering whether anyone has gone through it. Also, can anyone help me to distinguish the difference between the format of HR interview and a partner interview? I am assuming that the outcome of the partner interview will be the clenching point of whether you get the job or not.

Also, I currently have 3 years experience as Software developer, and my plans are in getting into management consultancy in the future. I set out my plans as first getting into a big organisation such as Accenture and network and try and transfer within. Does anyone have any advice of whether it is a good idea to go and work for Accenture if I get the offer? What are my realistic chances of switching from being a techie, to getting into consultancy?

Regards,

CJ

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#2 Re: Interview with Accenture Technology Solutions
30/04/2003 00:00

Jack

Hi,

If you have applied for ATS there is no chance to switch to consulting. ATS is the techie sweatshop of Accenture (low cost, high tech skilles, but no consulting work - sometimes even no client contact...)...

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#3 Re: Interview with Accenture Technology Solutions
01/05/2003 00:00

CJ

Hi,

Do you suggest that it is not a worthwhile to join them? Do you think that the assistance of a strong name will help in the future?

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#4 Re: Interview with Accenture Technology Solutions
05/05/2003 00:00

Jack

Hi again. The Accenture brand name has a lot of value, but be aware, that if your aspirations is in the business consulting area, the job offer at ATS is closing more doors that it opens. All the other consultant houses know, that ATS is the non-consulting techie part of Accenture.

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#5 Re: Interview with Accenture Technology Solutions
06/05/2003 00:00

CJ

Hi,

It sounded to me though as if the ATS was set up as a cost-cutting division, and they more or less do the same thing as the consultants, but having extra emphasis on delivering technology. It just felt to me as if they would be more or less be merged as one in the future, but due to legal reasons, keeping themselves as a separate unit. Also, they have not been established as a separate division for long, and quite a lot is still unsure. Also, could you explain, why it would close more doors than it would open? I would have assumed that with necessary contacts, it would be of definite help rather than the reverse.

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#6 Re: Interview with Accenture Technology Solutions
07/05/2003 00:00

Jack

Hi. You are right that the ATS is set up as a cost-cutting division, and they are doing what the technology/process group was doing in the old days, but ATS will not have the same kind of client interaction as they had, and in my oppinion the client interaction is where the real consulting job is done. Only in close interaction with the client, and at the client site you are able to deliver outstanding change to there business. I am part of the Business Consulting (BC) division (all that is not ATS...), and I know, that people from ATS will have a very hard time if they decides to change to "real" consulting (strategy, change management, supply chain management, process work, CRM .....) - and in that way is close more doors than it would open - a lot of tech/process consultants has choosen better to leave ACN than be part of ATS! That is because you after ATS always will have the "tech" label on your CV.

I have become an industry expert consultant by change, and I have problems changing to related industries after 5,5 years in ACN! - and when I talk to headhunters and other companies the story is the same. If your see yourself as a IBM, EDS, HP/Compaq, SAP, Oracle "Tech-expert consultant" in 5 years - go for the job at ATS - you will learn a lot, if your aspirations is more like BCG, McKinsey or other high-end consultant firms - don't take it - take an MBA because that will kick your career in the right direction. Hope that my answer have helped you.

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#7 Re: Interview with Accenture Technology Solutions
07/05/2003 00:00

CJ

Hi, Thanks a lot for your detailed response. So seeming that now, I am a technical person, the only way of conversion would be doing an MBA? I have recently spent 3 years as an IT Software engineer, and I have thought that seeming I have only worked for small SMEs, it would be helpful in establishing contacts with a large firm such as Accenture. I guess no matter what I do at this point, I would be labelled a "techie" anyhow, and would the only way out be doing an MBA? Plus, when is the right time to do an MBA? Isn't it always better to get at least a few more years (i.e. 5 years) behind you before doing an MBA? Does your previous experience as a "Tech-expert consultant" not help at all within the forthcoming future in possibly entering the business consulting world? Also, if you climb up the ranks within ATS, and make it as a senior manager, wouldn't that in some way be doing more and more business stuff? I just feel that more and more in the future, IT skills would need to come in hand to hand with business skills, and having had a foot in both camps would help...

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#8 Re: Interview with Accenture Technology Solutions
13/05/2003 00:00

Jack

Hi, again - sorry for my late reply. Lets begin with the end of your long question. It is an advantage to have a foot in both the tech and the business world, but you don't get that by joining ATS. If you could change the perspective of the job to the business consulting part of ACN - you could end up with a foot in both camps in 3-5 years - but only if you is focused on your end goal, and is willing to put your job on the line if they only staff you on purely technical projects for the next 2-3 years. That brings me to the next part - the ranks in ATS are NOT comparable with the ones in Business Consulting. A senior "programmer" is not a senior manager and most of the current managers in ATS are transfered from ACN BC. It is right, that you will have responsibility for a team of programmers, but as it is today, ATS is purely a tech-resource pool for the jobs we in BC are generating ....even the managers in ATS are reporting to people in the BC structure. I agree that a MBA is most valuable if you have some more years of experience (I do not have a MBA, but has a M.Sc. in engineering - with focus on industrial issues). An MBA is not the only way to business for you, but it is properly the fastest, but be aware - some of our tech BC ACN people has experienced problems getting into the MBA schools because.. they are ranked as to technical...!!! - and that has been after the transfer of the most technical people from the BC organisation to ATS..... Again - you have to take some calculated risk here, and you have to be clear - why do you want to be consultant? and what kind of consultant? What is the driver behind your consulting aspiration? What can close the gap between as-is (SME, IT Software engineer) and to-be (Management consultant?) The best of luck in your future - with or without ATS.. ;-)

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#9 Re: Interview with Accenture Technology Solutions
16/05/2003 00:00

CJ

Thanks a lot for your sound advice. You have helped me to consider options that I would have previously not thought about.

Many thanks.

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