PA Consulting Interview Questions & Reviews in London, England
Getting an Interview
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Consultant Interview (Positive Experience; Average Interview)
I applied through a staffing agency and the process took 4+ weeks - interviewed at PA Consulting in April 2013.
Interview Details – The process started with a phone interview, This wasn't about the content of the job, it was more career history and knowledge of and interest in the company and specific teams.
It was followed by an assessment centre, this had a large number of candidates of a range of experiences, which was interesting. Case studies and a group exercise and presentation formed most of the night.
Interview Question – Role playing a tough client. Answer Question
Principal Consultant Interview (Positive Experience; Difficult Interview)
I applied through a staffing agency and the process took 2 months - interviewed at PA Consulting in October 2013.
Interview Details – Process very neat and communicated well. Initial interview was with HR. Standard questions like why do you want to leave current job, why PA, area of expertise, current salary and salary expectations etc. Then there was an online test - maths, logical reasoning and psychology questions. These are tough if you are not used to solving these questions. After passing the online tests, there was an interview with Managing Consultant followed by a 30 min exercise where I was given an technical article and was asked to summarize it and give my opinion on the article. Next stage was interview with a Partner. It was a case study based role play followed by normal interview. Last stage was interview with a senior partner. Overall took 2+ months.
Interview Question – Difficult questions were asked during role play based case study. Presence of mind is important as well. Answer Question
Negotiation Details – Not much negotiation as they matched my expectations. Salary expectations were made clear at the start. Good thing is that salary is just the start and the opp for upside on the bonuses is unlimited. Very happy with overall compensation.
Consultant Interview (Positive Experience; Difficult Interview)
I applied online and the process took 4+ weeks - interviewed at PA Consulting in January 2013.
Interview Details – First stage was telephone interview, they asked standard questions like why do you want to apply to PA? why consulting? Why do you want to leave your current job? etc.
Next stage was the assessment centre. The first part was the presentation. You are given 20 minutes to read a brief about 3 IT projects which the hospital wants to invest in. You then have to decide which one is the best, and write out your thoughts on a whiteboard. This basically tests your presentation skills. For advice I would say it is important to plan your presentation and work out what you want to say beforehand, and also try to be clear and concise.
The second part was the interview, this is basically an extension of the telephone interview, so make sure you undetstand your CV and look up standard interview questions.
The third part was the group excercise. This was where a Music store chain is struggling, and you have to help them turn a profit. This is bascially trying to undetstand how you work in a team. It is best to not be too aggressive but to make your point accross. You willalso be asked questions by the interviewers afterwards, so its important to look interested - body language is important here.
Interview Question – Why do you want to join PA consulting? Answer Question
Analyst Interview (Positive Experience; Difficult Interview)
I applied through an employee referral and the process took 4+ weeks - interviewed at PA Consulting in August 2009.
Interview Details – First interview is with HR and you go through the general tests, which are pretty standard. HR were very friendly. Second interview was an assessment center with three other applicants. It was tough with a mix of challenges, both group and individual. You finish with an interview with a senior partner. Generally, very friendly people and a good experience.
Interview Question – You seem to have lived a very sheltered life. How will you handle travelling a great deal, working with difficult clients and possibly not having a great work-life balance? View Answer
Negotiation Details – It was relatively straight forward as I was going in as a recent graduate so the process was standard and the benefits were the same pretty much across the board.
Consultant Analyst Interview (Negative Experience; Difficult Interview)
I applied through a recruiter and the process took 2 months - interviewed at PA Consulting.
Interview Details – There were 4 interview rounds and during the process they specified that MBA candidates would come in at Consultant Analyst or Consultant. In the end they made me a laughable offer for Analyst at 29k a year even with my MBA! They also make you pay over 2k to their lawyers to process your visa. You essentially have to pay them to work there and then you get a crap salary. I rejected the offer and will never look back!
Interview Question – on round 2 I was asked about bond pricing which had no relevance to the role but rather to the person interviewing me's previous job - it was strange. Answer Question
Reason for Declining – salary was terribly low and disrespectful!
Consultant Interview (Negative Experience; Difficult Interview)
I applied through a recruiter and the process took 6 weeks - interviewed at PA Consulting in January 2013.
Interview Details – Very involved process, starting with two online tests, then a phone interview, case study, assessment day and final partner interview. This took six weeks, three trips to their offices and was very drawn out (about five of the weeks were just waiting).
Despite having two mathematics degrees, the online numeracy test was still required. The case study was fairly straightforward and fairly enjoyable, as was the assessment day, though the group task suffered from being overly artificial (though they always are).
The partner was late for the final interview, and so cut the time down to 45 minutes. Feedback from this stage seemed rather picky and wasn't at all constructive. 'The partner didn't like your body language'.
Interview Question – How would you deal with a customer who has come to you to answer the wrong question? Answer Question
Analyst Interview (Positive Experience; Average Interview)
I applied through college or university and the process took 4+ weeks - interviewed at PA Consulting in August 2009.
Interview Details – 1. Phone interview. 2. Onsite interviews - technical and consulting. 3. Group exercise. 4. Math and verbal tests. 5. Partner interview.
Interview Question – None Answer Question
Negotiation Details – No negotiation
Managing Consultant Interview (Negative Experience; Easy Interview)
I applied through a recruiter and the process took 3 months - interviewed at PA Consulting in February 2013.
Interview Details – Numeracy and Verbal reasoning test. First round telephone interview, second round interview with Managing consultant. Third round presentation to partner and partner interview. Partner was not an expert in the business area and had not taken time to read my cv.
Interview Question – What is the most useful piece of client feedback you have received? Answer Question
Principal Consultant Interview (Positive Experience; Average Interview)
I applied online and the process took 3 months - interviewed at PA Consulting in October 2012.
Interview Details – Very well organized interview process.
3 phases; telephone, assessment day, head of practice interview.
Interview Question – none Answer Question
Shared Services and Outsourcing Consultant Interview (Positive Experience; Difficult Interview)
I applied online and the process took 2 months - interviewed at PA Consulting in December 2012.
Interview Details – The only stage that I have got to is the assessment center. Thus I will break down the telephone interview:
Two element: (1) Motivation for PA and motivation for Management Consultancy
(2) Competency based questions
questions you will likely face: why PA? Tell me about you and why consultancy?
Where do you see yourself in 5 years?
Competency were challenging? name a time stuff... when you have lead a group, a situation that you would have changed, how and why?
Interview Question – when have you influenced someone in a position of power above you to achieve an objective, did they have any objections? what were they? how did you overcome them and what were the implications. Answer Question
Negotiation Details – ONLy through to Assessment center