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Probation period in consulting companies

 
#1 Probation period in consulting companies
02/11/2010 08:02

Con

Hi

I want to know if it is common for consulting companies to have 3 month intial probation period in full time permanent role?

Any exp..pls share .thanks

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#2 RE: Probation period in consulting companies
02/11/2010 08:49

Cynic to deleted (#0)

Yeah, that's normal. In fact, it's short.

It's also irrelevant because they can fire at will any time within the first 12 months anyway. Some of the more ruthless firms (i.e. those with an 'up or out' policy) fire as and when they want to anyway, regardless of what the law might say on the matter. They rely on weak-willed, eager-to-please consultants being too nervous to burn bridges and take on a rich company through an employment tribunal. Some don't even bother using compromise agreements, so confident are they that nobody will ever challenge them.

Anyway, that's a digression. Overall, I'd just view it as a statement of their intent - i.e. if you're still there after 4 months, they intend to keep you.

Basically it's nothing to worry about, at all.

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#3 RE: Probation period in consulting companies
02/11/2010 09:10

Mr Cool to Con (#1)

A three month probation period is completely standard for most firms these days, not just MC’s. Notice period during this probation is often just one week, progressing to one month or greater when the probation period has been passed.

In practice it allows firms to ensure that you are not a psychopath, drug addict, etc, and also allows them to check your academic claims etc.

In very extreme cases the probation period can be extended. I have done this once in twenty years, where a new employee that was otherwise good, had a problem with timekeeping. We used the extension of the probation period to really drive home the point that it was detracting from an otherwise excellent performance. Did the trick.

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#4 RE: Probation period in consulting companies
02/11/2010 09:59

Dave to Mr Cool (#3)

Tell us more about this timekeeping issue. It sounds like it could make a very good story.

Most consultants I have met don't have even the remotest ability to finish a meeting or leave work on time. Absolutely appalling timekeeping.

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#5 RE: Probation period in consulting companies
02/11/2010 10:51

Mr Cool to Dave (#4)

Err...he was late for work. A lot.

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#6 RE: Probation period in consulting companies
02/11/2010 11:00

Dave to Mr Cool (#5)

Tell us more about the excuses he gave (if any) and how he responded when confronted. Tell us about the inconvenience it caused to the company and his colleagues, and the average and maximum amount of time by which he was late. This is riveting and I would like to know more!

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#7 RE: Probation period in consulting companies
02/11/2010 11:46

Mr Cool to Dave (#6)

I don’t know Dave – not sure it would run the full length of a mini-series…..

------------------------------------

Episode One – “When you’re late, you can’t be later”

INTERNAL SHOT – HEAD OFFICE OF A BANK – BY THE WATER COOLER

Mr Cool: Look Steve, I need to have a quick informal chat about your timekeeping.

Steve (sheepishly): Yeah, I’m sorry I was late again. To be honest I had too much to drink again last night at the hotel where the team are all staying, then got caught in traffic coming into the client office.

Mr Cool: Steve, boozing it up on expenses is all part of the job, but it’s an unwritten rule that you have to be able to hide your hangover from the client. Just because they’re paying for it, doesn’t mean they expect you to be late. I’m afraid I’m going to have to extend your probation period until you can show that you’ve got what it takes.

Steve: Really!! Jeez, I didn’t realise it was such a big deal. I’m really sorry!

Mr Cool: There were a few sideways glances at you from the clients when you sloped in at ten past nine. Some of them were suggesting that you’re a shandy-nancy.

Steve: No way – I was on a major bender! G&T before dinner, couple bottles of decent wine with the meal and a bunch of beers afterwards. There’s no way I’d spend the clients money on shandy and then be late the next day. Please, please give me another chance. I know I’ve got what it takes to have a career in consultancy.

Mr Cool (thoughtfully): Hmmm. Look. You seem to have potential. How about we do a deal. Leave early for the next few days on the pretext of an off-site meeting. Get an early start in the bar. The rest of the team will join you later as normal and we can get some proper focus on your drinking – cocktails, Krug, XO Cognac – the type of stuff you’ll need to handle if you want to make partner one day. If you can handle that and still make it in for 7am, then I’ll rethink the probation thing.

Steve: Thanks, Mr Cool. I won’t let you down.

FADE

--------------------------------------

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#8 RE: Probation period in consulting companies
02/11/2010 14:16

Con to Con (#1)

Apologies for posting the thread twice..

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#9 RE: Probation period in consulting companies
02/11/2010 14:25

Dave to Con (#8)

Do not worry Con, you are forgiven. xx

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#10 RE: Probation period in consulting companies
02/11/2010 14:27

Dave to Dave (#9)

Mr Cool, it's great to know that there is at least 1 other consultant out there that values punctuality. I can't stand it when people issue agendas that say "2.00-4.00pm" and then turn up at 2.10pm, start the meeting at 2.15pm, and are still rambling on at 5.30pm as if nobody has any commitments in their life other than that one boring meeting.

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#11 RE: Probation period in consulting companies
02/11/2010 15:44

someguy to Dave (#10)

@Cool Excellent... forget those working girl confessionals, we should have "Bill du Jour: Confessions of a London Consultant!"

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