Our topic for today is focused about what it requires to handle a consulting interview and ace it. We shall split the topic into regions of generic interview and preparation and at a bird’s-eye view touch upon specifics of understanding what technology related interview versus process related interview.
So do you have what it requires to ace a consulting interview?
While you spend some time analyzing whether you are ready for a consulting interview, let’s look at what it requires to get ready for the interview.While a consulting interview in lots of ways may be similar to a regular meeting, you can find regions of the interview that grossly differs from any job interviews.
As could be the case with every other interview, this interview would begin with the interviewer asking you to describe something about yourself, your experience in the consulting industry. If you do not have any experience in consulting, there’s a high probability that the you would be likely to map your present experience to consulting experience requirements. IT Jobs for UK and Europe But when you do not have any experience at all, there’s a high likelihood you are not shortlisted for an interview in a consulting firm.
For experience consulting professionals this part becomes easy as whatever you do is explain your present role and how it maps to the brand new role you are seeking. For newbies, it becomes much more challenging to handle a consulting interview. So it would help newbies to get in touch with consulting professionals as a part of the networking exercise just before presenting themselves for a consulting interview. This will help you get familiarized with the consulting industry and specifically the role of a consultant. You can best leverage networking sites and informal communications for this purpose.
Ensure you research enough in regards to the consulting firm you are taking the consulting interview with. Typically consulting organizations showcase case studies of these client problems and the answer they provided as part of their case studies. They might be for sale in brief on the website. Take some time to learn and understand these case studies. It might allow you to throughout your consulting interview.
Indeed, it might not be smart to assume that these cases would be presented to you throughout your consulting interview. But reviewing these cases could help give you insight about what the corporation is looking for.
It can also be advisable for you to review their service offerings and align your experience to among the service offerings. Whilst it is excellent that you might carry some experience, it is vital that the ability maps as to the the consulting firm offers to its clients. This might definitely be tested in your consulting interview. Make sure that you make an effort to understand their service offerings and convince the firm of one’s value enhance the offering.
Be ready to resolve for an instance study. If you are an experienced and an experienced consultant attending a consulting interview, there’s a high likelihood that you will be not presented with an instance study to solve.
But if you’re a newbie, there’s no skipping this step. Please observe that throughout your consulting interview, the firm will not look for you to solve the case study. It is more vital and probable that the firm will be examining your ability to think beyond your box, structured thinking, your analytical skills, your condition solving abilities and your communication skills although case study. Prepare for multiple case studies is vital for the consulting interview success. Check to see if you will get insights for consulting case studies from HBR magazine or others of similar nature for the consulting interview.
So how does this impact my consulting interview?
The clear answer is quite simple if you believe about it. Consulting spans in numerous forms. As always, given the boom in IT and ITES outsourcing, the demand for management consultants in the act and the technology space has been on the rise. If you are aware of the outsoucing industry, you would know that the most typical processes that any organization would check out outsource are its finance and accounting operations. Interesting isn’t it?
On a single hand some of us think Finance and Accounting are among the safest jobs on the planet, on one other they are the easiest to be outsourced.
So in regards to consulting, you might be either an activity consultant or a technology impacted management consultant. If you are an activity consultant, the expectation is that you shoulder in-depth expertise and process knowledge in your town of expertise. I’m sorry to disappoint new graduates out there. But process consulting essentially requires prior experiences in the area/ domain you need to consult in. So you will need to work your way up the ladder from being a newbie to someone with experience in specific processes and domain to become process consultant. This will definitely be tested undoubtedly throughout your consulting interview. If you are from a financing background with a consulting touch, process terms like Quote to Cash, Order to Cash also known as O2C. Procure to Pay (P2P) and Record to Report (R2R) should not be a new comer to you.
Also, if you believe gaining some knowledge and jargon from the consulting industry will help you get through your consulting interview, you are highly mistaken. This will only allow you to get a negative repute in the market making you unsuitable for consulting jobs.
The other consulting arena I was hoping to the touch upon through this blog is Technology related consulting – When I state technology related consulting I’m certainly not discussing IT consulting here. I’m discussing management consulting in which firms leverage technology extensively to resolve for business problems (not IT problems but business problems). For example – leveraging business objects solution to cut back the time for you to report or utilizing a tax bolt on software to perform tax accrual better and releasing cash flow for better investment and reduce litigation fees.
Regardless of your consulting area, you can find few things you may be assured to be tested in your consulting interview.
a) A common question in your consulting interview would be on domain and part of expertise
b) Throughout your consulting interview also expect questions on definition of one’s client’s problem statement and the answer delivered and your role as a consultant in delivering the solution.
I believe in today’s world, it is very challenging so that you can be an exclusive process consultant. Technology touches our lives every day. So even although you really are a core process consultant, in my opinion, you would be forced to brush with technology sooner or later over time making you a technology related management consultant.