Boston Consulting Group Consultant Interview Questions

Updated Jul 23, 2015
161 Interview Reviews

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Consultant Interview

Anonymous Employee in Miami, FL
Declined Offer
Positive Experience
Easy Interview

Application

I applied through college or university. The process took 2 weeksinterviewed at Boston Consulting Group (Miami, FL) in October 2013.

Interview

BCG came on campus. Resume got selected through the pool. Interview scheduled within two weeks of application. Two rounds. First one was on campus. Two 30 minutes interview with 5-7 minutes of behavioral then a case study. Both interviews lasted more than 45 minutes. Second round at the office. Three 30 minutes talk scheduled. This time emphasis more on fit but still a case study involved. Met with few other members at the office as well. Impression: Super cool bunch of people. Very impressed. I like them better than McKinsey or Bain. Top notch firm...! Take an offer if you get it.

Interview Questions

  • Nothing out of the ordinary or trick question. Case study was straight forward. They try to help you along like you're working on an assignment together. Show them your work while discussing it. DO NOT mess up the simple math and do it on the fly. If you're making math related mistakes, you won't get a second round. Simple as that.   Answer Question

Reasons for Declining

I'm more interested in I-Banking than Consulting.

Other Interview Reviews for Boston Consulting Group

  1.  

    Consultant Interview

    Anonymous Employee in Los Angeles, CA
    No Offer
    Neutral Experience
    Difficult Interview

    Application

    I applied online. The process took 2 weeksinterviewed at Boston Consulting Group (Los Angeles, CA) in October 2013.

    Interview

    Applied as a PhD student from a non-target school and was invited for a first round interview in the office. Interview consisted of two behavioral/case interviews. One interview was with a principal and the other was with a project manager. Cases were fairly standard affairs and were based on actual projects that the interviewers worked on.

    Interview Questions

    • A pharmaceutical wants to expand to China or Mexico. Which one should they move into?   Answer Question
  2.  

    Consultant Interview

    Anonymous Employee in San Francisco, CA
    No Offer
    Positive Experience
    Difficult Interview

    Application

    I applied through college or university. The process took 1 dayinterviewed at Boston Consulting Group (San Francisco, CA) in September 2013.

    Interview

    I went to several presentations on campus and spoke to many of the ADC consultants from the west coast. Everyone was extremely friendly and open. It helps to network before submitting the cover letter through the website. Once submitted, they were a little inconsistent in letting people know whether they had a first round interview. They invited us to an interview prep workshop 2 days before which was nice but a little too late. My interviewers were great but I ultimately was unable to read the situation and do well.

    Interview Questions

    • Business case didn't feel like the practice ones given. Case on solar panels. Not quite interviewer or interviewee led. Still was interesting even though I could tell by their body language that I was not going on to the next round.   Answer Question
  3. Helpful (2)  

    Consultant Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate in Chicago, IL
    Accepted Offer
    Positive Experience
    Difficult Interview

    Application

    I applied online. The process took 5+ monthsinterviewed at Boston Consulting Group (Chicago, IL) in August 2013.

    Interview

    There are two rounds 1st round I had two interview with a project leader and a principle. The Second round I had two interviews with Partners. With the exception of one of my final round interviews all the interviews had the same standard format. Fit interview for 15 min and then candidate lead case interview for 30 min. One of my final round interviews was a written interview where I had 45 min to look through information and compose a recommendation. I then had 45 min of discussion and follow-up questions with my interviewer regarding the situation. Then I had 15 min of Fit interview to finish up.

    Interview Questions

    • The most difficult question was probably some of the math in one of the cases. Not complicated mathematically, but conceptually trying to figure out how to structure the solution.   Answer Question
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  5.  

    Consultant Interview

    Anonymous Employee in Philadelphia, PA
    No Offer
    Positive Experience
    Difficult Interview

    Application

    I applied through college or university. The process took 1 dayinterviewed at Boston Consulting Group (Philadelphia, PA).

    Interview

    It was an interview on campus and there were 2 case studies, 45 mins/ ea. They asked me to analysis the business of a coffee shop providing the background of the market as well as the details of the shop and give a solution after the calculation. The following case study interview is given by a guy who had been in BCG for 1 year. We chatted a little bit football (he is from Europe) and finished the case. It went very smoothly. The second interview was easier for me. Whether or not the recruiter led you in the case analysis is important.

    Interview Questions

  6. Helpful (9)  

    Consultant Interview

    Anonymous Employee
    No Offer
    Negative Experience
    Difficult Interview

    Application

    I applied online. The process took 2 weeksinterviewed at Boston Consulting Group.

    Interview

    There were two back to back 45 minute interviews. To give some background, I had more work experience and a more advanced (and higher ranked) education than both of my interviewers. I only say this since this firm cares a lot about school names (I don’t). The first interviewer was very friendly, laid back, and asked normal behavioral questions that were easy to answer. He also gave the case interview properly. The only problem was the poorly made graphs. I have created many dual axis graphs in my life – but I don’t create a jumble of numbers within those graphs – that’s what the Excel option to put a table *below* the graph is for. Also, I haven’t done math without Excel or a calculator since I was in grammar school. I practiced for a week beforehand, but I still made mistakes with very easy numbers. Since they adamantly believe that clients will entrap you in situations where you have to immediately spit out numbers from thin air without hesitation, it is imperative that you do not make a mistake with anything mathematical. My second interview was worse. The consultant asked much more lengthy behavioral questions that she hadn't bothered to sort out ahead of time. Every time I answered one, there was a long delay as she fumbled through her papers to find the next interview questions to ask. She had a very cold demeanor, and she could barely fake any interest in my background or experiences. When she asked me about a setback in my life, she checked out while I was answering it - and then asked a follow up question that I already answered ("what did you learn from it"). Her case delivery was a mess too. Again, she did not pay attention to half of the things I said. She did not know a basic term about the industry she supposedly worked in (that the case was about). I would state hypotheses and information I needed, and she ignored anything I said that did not fit the precisely predetermined case structure and wording that she expected. It was the end of a day, so maybe this was part of the problem. However, if you are going to be a case interviewer (as I have been) you have to flexibly adapt to the areas that the interviewee goes. You can’t stonewall them if they don’t go in your exact order and vocabulary. You CAN say “let’s ignore this part of the issue for the case” or “can you describe what you mean?” to guide them without giving away answers. I had far more direct work experience and exposure to the exact problem I was asked than the interviewer had. I knew how these issues worked in reality, and parts of the case were so absurdly outside of reality, I couldn’t arrive at the logic they had embedded in the case (e.g., obtaining 100% market share in an industry with massive established competitors - that was the goal!). She also kept demanding that I ask her questions during the case, even though I stated the information I needed. I used this approach with the first interviewer, and he simply gave me the information. I said “I would need the market share” but unless I ASKED her “what is the market share?” – she would virtually yell at me “if you ask a question, I can answer it!” Huh? Alex Trebek? If people state what they need (and it is not in “question format”) I give them the information. It was very disruptive to have to keep rephrasing everything. I had to read two charts (and I have read thousands of charts in my life) – and one had no clear label on the Y axis. I asked what that axis was supposed to be and she literally yelled “it’s a histogram!” This was the second time I got a badly designed chart, and part of the problem was my own confusion about why BGG would give such awful charts (was I missing something or was the mess deliberate). If they said “the client gave us this data” it would make a little more sense. Instead, she just said “here". Also, since I made some mistakes early on (within the first 5 minutes) and once I did this, she was checked out. She could barely fake it for the other 25 minutes once I misread the first chart. BGG recruiters: If you just want someone who can crunch numbers (which appears to be the sole criteria despite technological advancements called calculators and excel), don’t interview people who have the backgrounds like mine. It wastes everyone’s time and just causes ill will and frustration for everyone involved. Use a test like McKinsey and you won’t have to do this. Also, train your staff to give case interviews properly. I wouldn't have posted all of this if it wasn't such a mess. I interviewed at another strategy firm, but that interviewer was extremely experienced. He explained, in depth, why the theories and ideas I put forth would (or would not) work. He knew how to give a case. The BCG people did not and should not be doing it. I had no issues with the other firm rejecting me based on my poor case performance since it was very reasonable and professional. This was another story.

    Interview Questions

    • Interviewer 1 basically wanted a history of my working life since undergrad, and then he asked a few follow up questions. He wanted to know why I wanted to go into consulting and why I wanted to work for BGG. His case started as a basic profit = revenue – cost case with some deeper issues that involved further calculations and poorly made graphs. Interviewer 2 asked when I led people and had an impact – and what that impact was. I answered that, though it was impossible to gauge if it was sufficient. She also asked about a time when I had to redo work or take another approach because my first approach didn’t work (or something like that) – which was sort of odd because she also asked about a major setback which is in a similar realm of questioning.   Answer Question
  7.  

    Consultant Interview

    Anonymous Employee
    No Offer

    Interview

    The process was very professionally managed with clear expectations and numerous follow ups. First round consisted of two back-to-back case interviews and second round was similar but took into account feedback from the first.

    Interview Questions

    • Case where the client's had an unrealistic plan to expand into a particular market. Need to deliver that by doing calculations and guiding clients to the conclusion in a friendly way.   Answer Question
  8.  

    Consultant Interview

    Anonymous Employee in Philadelphia, PA
    No Offer
    Neutral Experience
    Average Interview

    Application

    I applied through college or university. The process took 2+ weeksinterviewed at Boston Consulting Group (Philadelphia, PA).

    Interview

    I applied for the consultant position at an office overseas via MBA on-campus recruiting. I was interviewed by an international recruiting team (not from the office I was applying for.) Round one had two interviews. Each interview lasted 45 minutes and included a few fit questions and a case. One interviewer was a Project Leader and the other was an Associate Principal. (Both men.)

    Interview Questions

    • Unexpected fit question: "If I took your resume and removed the name at the top, what line on your resume would make your friends read it and recognize you?"   1 Answer
  9.  

    Consultant Interview

    Anonymous Employee in New York, NY
    No Offer
    Positive Experience
    Difficult Interview

    Application

    The process took 4 weeksinterviewed at Boston Consulting Group (New York, NY).

    Interview

    First round interview was in Boston; two 45-minute interviews - one with a Consultant, and one with a Project Leader. Both interviews had a similar format - a little bit of chit chat, a couple of more formal fit questions, and then the case. The cases were reasonably tricky, requiring a structured approach and also some logic/insight. Moved on to a final round interview in New York. Nearly identical format, but this time with Principals/Partners. Fit questions were a bit less formal (no "tell me about a time when..." questions), and one of the cases was quite unconventional. I felt that the interview went pretty well, but got a rejection call a few days later. Main feedback point was that I didn't do a good enough job of highlighting why I was interested in consulting. I was disappointed by the outcome, but left with a very positive impression of the firm.

    Interview Questions

  10. Helpful (4)  

    Consultant Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate in Washington, DC
    Accepted Offer
    Positive Experience
    Difficult Interview

    Application

    I applied online. The process took 5 weeksinterviewed at Boston Consulting Group (Washington, DC) in October 2012.

    Interview

    First round interview in Chicago. Second round interview in DC. The recruiting staff does a good job ensuring that the trips and office visits are pleasant and go smoothly. 5 interviews total between the 2 rounds. Each interview was 1 on 1 for about 45min and consisted of 10min of fit questions about leadership, teamwork, and interest in consulting followed by 30min of a business case and ending with time for me to ask questions. In each case interview the interviewers defaulted to having me pick which parts of my framework to investigate, but they intervened for the sake of time if I went too far off track or made serious math mistakes. First round interviews consisted of 2 interviews by current Consultants. Both were friendly. One was open and easy to read, the other was not. Both cases were pretty straightforward, with a problem statement, a question about how to proceed, analysis of charts, some calculations, and recommendations. At the end they gave some good insights into the job and lifestyle when I asked. Second round interviews consisted of 3 interviews by current Partners. The partners definitely came across as having high standards but were friendly, professional, and pretty easy to read. The business cases they used each seemed to be pet cases that were relevant to their own experience and that they'd used many times before. Two of these cases put extra emphasis on brainstorming and hypothesizing compared to the first round interviews. They very clearly appreciated creative and insightful answers and were clearly unimpressed by poor analysis and getting flustered by mistakes. The partners provided good insights into the company when I asked at the end. Overall, the interviews were a positive experience. I like the case format's ability to convey analytical abilities, but it's tough to expand meaningfully on a resume in 10 minutes of fit questions.

    Interview Questions

    • One of the interviewers gave me a blank graph and asked me to speculate what it should look like based on our previous discussion.   Answer Question

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1 person found this helpful

 Current Anonymous Employee

Pros: “Great culture, good training, fun events for interns”“Great culture, good training, fun events for interns” – Full Review

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