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Graduate positions

#1 Graduate positions
10/03/2005 19:26


I am coming to the end of my under-graduate hons degree in Business and Marketing and I am really keen to get a graduate position in strategy consulting. I am expecting a first class or high upper second class degree, however, I came to university as a mature student (well technically, I am now 27) and I do not have any A-Levels. All the graduate positions in consulting that I have seen advertised require a certain amount of UCAS points, which i dont have. I do have about 4 Years management experience with McDonalds. Should i still apply? is there any way around this?

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#2 Re: Graduate positions
10/03/2005 19:59

Reality Check

Business and Marketing.....McDonalds....Strategy Consultancy?!?!?! I think not.

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#3 Re: Graduate positions
11/03/2005 19:18


Thanyou for the constructive advise but I was looking more along the lines of whether or not I need to look at doing a post-grad qualification or maybe at getting some relevent experience before trying to get into consulting. Any advice from anyone would be greatly appreciated.

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#4 Re: Graduate positions
11/03/2005 22:34

Management Consultant

Hi, I think getting into a Strategy House would be quite difficult because they really look for a flawless acamdemic record. However, I think some of the other consultancies may be interested, as long as you can prove some specialist skills, i.e. management at McD's, your marketing knowledge, etc...Let's not forget that McD's is a firm that makes more money that all consultancies put together!

Also, just because a firm isnt regarded as a Strategy firm doesn't mean they dont do strategy work. I work for a big global consultancy and have worked on a number of strategy assingments. Furthermore, I have less than 10 UCAS points (which is the same as having no UCAS points) and have a really crap degree! But I made it and am doing really well! So try other firms. Maybe you should try working as a marketing exec/manager for a while and then switch over after a few years. Don't worry about the age/UCAS thing - ability is ability and good firms know that!

Best of luck.

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#5 look at other strat firms / consulting practices
14/03/2005 10:45

Tony Restell (Top-Consultant)

Stuart - I'd agree with some of the other posts that have been added to the forum. The very top strategy firms have exceedingly high entry standards and high UCAS points will undoubtedly be something they look for in candidates.


However, the major global consulting firms have to recruit in much larger numbers each year and so as a rule they will be a bit more forgiving - if they can see clear signs of excellence on your CV then they will be more likely to ignore low UCAS points.


The good news is that later in your career, having got a major consulting brand on your CV, you may be able to gain entry either with a top strategy firm or a top business school (which then opens the door to the top strategy firms). So my advice would be don't get hung up on joining one of the elite strategy firms and instead focus on finding roles with the major global consulting giants as they can be a stepping stone for you.


Good luck, Tony

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#6 Re: Graduate positions
14/03/2005 16:52


Hi, Thanks for the advice, really helpfull and a big encouragement after the first responce i got. Im currently looking at Capmgemini which looks promising, and I'm applying for a position as assistent brand manager at Proctor and Gamble. Just wondering, what route did you take into consultancy? Stuart

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#7 Re: look at other strat firms / consulting practices
14/03/2005 17:08


Hi Tony, Thanks for the advice, really heplfull. Im currently looking at Capgemini and as you point out, they seem to be a bit less stringent on their accademic requirements so this looks fairly promising.

Thanks, Stuart

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#8 Re: Graduate positions
14/03/2005 22:03

Management Consultant

Hi there,

I'm the guy with the crap UCAS points...

After my degree I did an MSc in Management and got a distinction. I think that's what really helped balance my poor academic record. Plus I did some freelance project assistance work which showed that I had initiative.

If you need more info, just ask!

Regards, MC

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#9 Re: Graduate positions
14/03/2005 22:05

Management Consultant

Sorry, to fully answer your question: after the MSc I just started applying to various consultancies as an entry level consultant - got the job on my first interview!



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#10 Re: Graduate positions
16/03/2005 09:08

Thanks for this..

Your response makes me laugh (Mr Reality Check). Hehehe, lol, lmol.

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#11 Re: Graduate positions
22/03/2005 22:37


Hi Management Consultant

Thats promising to hear. I think i have a similar route, after 8 years in the travel industry i went back to uni and completed an MBA and got a distinction. However, im coming up against the problem of where i studied isnt one of the elite! I want to go in to change mgmt and am applying to all sorts including entry level. What was your approach at your interview? Any other tips?

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#12 Re: Graduate positions
25/03/2005 21:37

Management Consultant

Hi Lindsey, Before my interview I basically read everything I could about management consulting as a profession, i.e. the IMC website, MCA website, various consulting books - basically, I knew pretty much what consultants (general/strategy) did and how they worked before my interview...

Also, I made sure I let them know that I was so keen to join the industry that I would be willing to start from the bottom, with the belief that I could fast-track myself due to being a quick learner, well rounded, etc...

One final tip.....if you do get called up for an interview....try to emerge as a leader (if you are one). Thats one thing no Oxbridge/Harvard degree can give you - you're either born with it or without. If you are a leader - show it off.

Good luck!

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