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ACN MC or Goldman Sachs Operations?

 
#1 ACN MC or Goldman Sachs Operations?
05/11/2007 16:10

CoNFuseD

Hi All

I've managed to secure a posistion with both ACN MC & Goldman Sachs - in Operations, not th most glam or cutting edge of areas.

Both are graduate posistions with positives and negatives, but I'm having a tough time deciding...my heart says ACN MC but my head (thinking about £££ - hopfully in Ops it's acheivable) is saying take the GS role.

Q) If you could have your time again - would you choose GS Ops over Consulting?

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#2 RE: ACN MC or Goldman Sachs Operations?
05/11/2007 16:22

anon to CoNFuseD (#1)

what are the compensations like?

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#3 RE: ACN MC or Goldman Sachs Operations?
05/11/2007 16:32

anon to anon (#2)

As sad as it is I think even ops will pay better than MC, will be better hours, greater stability and much less travel.

MC by comparison would win on the intellectually stimulating side of things. It's unlikely you would move from BO to FO by the way though I do know someon who did it.

Accenture is a good firm despite what you will read on here though and you could probably spend 4 years there, do an MBA and get a front office job.

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#4 RE: ACN MC or Goldman Sachs Operations?
05/11/2007 16:51

Sophie to anon (#3)

I can't believe you're even thinking about it. This is a no-brainer. Do you know what the average bonus per employee is at GS?? With GS on your CV, the world's your oyster.

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#5 RE: ACN MC or Goldman Sachs Operations?
05/11/2007 16:58

anon to Sophie (#4)

Sophie do you know what the average bonus is per back office employee? Rarely more than 20% until senior and never the salary multiples front office guys get.

If you don't know what your talking about refrain from mis-guiding this chap.

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#6 RE: ACN MC or Goldman Sachs Operations?
05/11/2007 17:07

Mars A Day to CoNFuseD (#1)

In terms of portable experience and value in the market ACN MC offers more than back office in IB, even if it is with GS. Don't make the mistake of chasing the £££ so soon in your career - your priority at this point should be gaining broad experience and development. The MC route will open doors for you, starting your career in IB ops of all places will close most of them.

And Sophie - don't turn his head with the 'glamour' of GS! This is not a beauty parade it's Confused's future at stake!

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#7 RE: ACN MC or Goldman Sachs Operations?
05/11/2007 17:11

CoNFuseD to anon (#5)

Hi All

Thanks for the responses so far.

I know the big £££ is in FO roles and not Ops - also looking at the GS website the majority of profiles of persons working in Ops are based in Bangalore! This is worrying for the short/mid term.

My problem is that perhaps I've become indoctrinated into thinking GS is the pinnacle regardless of start point, when it perhaps isn't...(can't believe I actually wrote that :-)

I'll have to soul search a bit longer...I need a drink...bye for now

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#8 RE: ACN MC or Goldman Sachs Operations?
05/11/2007 17:32

anon to CoNFuseD (#7)

I would say to be honest, it might sound great to be working for GS but in reality Ops is really not too exciting or well paid. Accenture might not be Mckinsey but at least you'll have an interesting 'front office' role there and your exit options will be far more appealing.

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#9 RE: ACN MC or Goldman Sachs Operations?
05/11/2007 21:50

Another Anon to anon (#8)

Having worked on both sides of the fence, I can say without a doubt, GS wins hands down. I started off at Accenture and focused on I-Banking and even worked at GS within Operations. I now work for another I-Banking within IT, working across a number of functions, including Ops.

Given the complexity of the financial products today (which is probably one of the reasons why we're in the mess that we are in today!) Ops and other support functions are becoming increasingly important in the IB Ops model. The people that you meet in Ops are not muppets, in fact I would wager a bet that most people within Accenture or equivalent firm, would have problems securing an equivalent role within Ops. Ops people don't do the back-end mind numbing stuff (i.e. confirm and settle trades and pay counter-parties) they play a very important part in the lifecycle of the trade. The placing of the trade by the Sales and filling of that trade by a trader is only the start of it. If the remaining aspects of the trade go belly up, then, the Bank is subject to significant penalties from regulators, exchnages, brokers, counter-parties etc etc.

A lot of people who are ex-consultants end up in Ops and they are very happy. Not only with the pay (which is a lot better than consulting (exc MBBB) ) but their work as well, in terms of challenges and variety of roles.

In my Bank mobilitlty is encouraged and people do move around every 2-3 years.

In terms of comp, okay you're not going to get £1 million bonuses, but let's face it, you're not going to get that in consulting either. The biggest bonus I ever got in consulting was £5k. I was a Senior Manager at the time. Even with the recent sub-prime fallout, I'm looking at a bonus at least ten times that. Last year my total comp was just over £200k. I've just made Director, which in Consulting terms is equivalent to a very senior manager. I work slightly less hours, less travelling, with a helluva lot more responsibility and challenges. Doesn't take a Harvard educated quant analyst to work out what's the better option.

Finally, GS, no better name. The creme de la creme, irrespective of industry.

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#10 RE: ACN MC or Goldman Sachs Operations?
05/11/2007 22:40

CoNFuseD to Another Anon (#9)

Phew! thanks 'Another Anon' - I really needed that info.

I haven't even started in my first real job and here I was having to think seriously about the 'exit' options years down the line!

I'm attracted to the pace of work within Ops/IB and in the long run, agree that GS on my CV is perhaps just that little bit special. (Pity they don't get the big £££ in Ops - but I'll have to marry within the firm I guess :-)

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#11 RE: ACN MC or Goldman Sachs Operations?
05/11/2007 23:09

ACN MC to Another Anon (#9)

Yes, but do consider the exit options. From Ops, you have managed people and understand the back operations of an investment bank. This is not the same as being client-facing and constructing complex deals, trades, etc. In consulting, you will gain broad and diverse industry knowledge, client-facing skills, management experience, high-level contacts, a huge network, and experience with numerous business capabilities (i.e. marketing, org design, change management). This will involve leadership, uncomfort with predictability, ambiguity and problem-solving skills, and innovation, which is the ideal set of skills for a college graduate to gain.

Also consider this: the new head of management consulting in NA is a former McKinsey partner. The global and NA strategy leads are former McKinsey partners. Accenture is growing the MC practice and increasing its exclusivity. I would recommend that you carefully consider the skills that you would gain at both jobs, which, believe it or not, are far more important that Goldman Sachs Ops (which everyone knows is not the same as IB, including business schools and employers).

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#12 RE: ACN MC or Goldman Sachs Operations?
05/11/2007 23:14

MC to Another Anon (#9)

Depends what you want from life. Most IB Ops people I have met lack vision and ambition. They are mostly rather dull people who are blinded by their "grand" institution into thinking they are making the world go round. My 2p worth - MC, MBA then front office or fast track to the exec suite in industry. IB Operations better than ACN MC pah!... maybe better than ACN Tech but not MC by a million miles.

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