Our topic for today is focused on which it will take to handle a consulting interview and ace it. We shall split the topic into areas 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 are you experiencing what it will take to ace a consulting interview?
While you spend time analyzing if you are ready for a consulting interview, let’s look at what it will take to organize for the interview.While a consulting interview in many ways might be just like a typical appointment, there are areas of the interview that grossly differs from some other job interviews.
As may be the case with every other interview, this interview would start with the interviewer asking you to describe something about yourself, your experience in the consulting industry. IT Careers in UK and Europe If you may not have any experience in consulting, there’s a higher probability that the you’d be anticipated to map your current experience to consulting experience requirements. But when you may not have any experience at all, there’s a higher likelihood you’re not shortlisted for an interview in a consulting firm.
For experience consulting professionals this part becomes easy as all you do is explain your current role and how it maps to the new role you’re seeking. For starters, it becomes a bit more challenging to handle a consulting interview. So it would help newbies for connecting with consulting professionals as a the main networking exercise just before presenting themselves for a consulting interview. This can help you get familiarized with the consulting industry and specifically the role of a consultant. You might best leverage networking sites and informal communications for this purpose.
Ensure you research enough in regards to the consulting firm you’re taking the consulting interview with. Typically consulting organizations showcase case studies of these client problems and the solution they provided as a part of their case studies. They might be available in brief on their website. Take the time to learn and understand these case studies. It might help you through your consulting interview.
Indeed, it may possibly not be wise to assume why these cases would be presented for you through your consulting interview. But reviewing these cases can help provide you with insight on which the business is looking for.
It can be advisable for you really to review their service offerings and align your experience to one of the service offerings. Although it is fantastic that you might carry some experience, it is vital that the experience maps as to the the consulting firm offers to its clients. This would definitely be tested in your consulting interview. Ensure that you take some time to understand their service offerings and convince the firm of one’s value increase the offering.
Be well prepared to resolve for an incident study. If you are a skilled and a professional consultant attending a consulting interview, there’s a very good likelihood that you will be not offered an incident study to solve.
But if you are a beginner, there’s no skipping this step. Please note that through your consulting interview, the firm will not look for you really to solve the case study. It is more vital and probable that the firm will undoubtedly be examining your ability to believe beyond your box, structured thinking, your analytical skills, your problem solving abilities and your communication skills although case study. Prepare for multiple case studies is vital for your consulting interview success. Check to see if you may get insights for consulting case studies from HBR magazine or others of similar nature for your consulting interview.
So so how exactly does this impact my consulting interview?
The answer is fairly simple if you think 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 alert to the outsoucing industry, you’d understand 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 one of the safest jobs on earth, on one other they are the simplest to be outsourced.
So when it comes to consulting, you could be either a process consultant or a technology impacted management consultant. If you are a process 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 wish to consult in. Which means you will have to work your path up the ladder from being a beginner to someone with experience in specific processes and domain becoming a process consultant. This will definitely be tested undoubtedly through 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) shouldn’t be new to you.
Also, if you think gaining some knowledge and jargon from the consulting industry can help you get throughout your consulting interview, you’re highly mistaken. This will only allow you to get a bad repute in the industry making you unsuitable for consulting jobs.
Another consulting arena I was hoping to touch upon through this blog is Technology related consulting – When I state technology related consulting I’m certainly not talking about IT consulting here. I’m talking about 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 employing a tax bolt on software to perform tax accrual better and releasing cash flow for better investment and reduce litigation fees.
Irrespective of your consulting area, there are few things you may be assured of being tested in your consulting interview.
a) A typical question in your consulting interview would be on domain and section of expertise
b) During your consulting interview also expect questions on definition of one’s client’s problem statement and the solution delivered and your role as a consultant in delivering the solution.
I believe in today’s world, it is extremely challenging so that you can be an exclusive process consultant. Technology touches our lives every day. So even though you are a core process consultant, for me, you’d be forced to brush with technology at some point in time making you a technology related management consultant.