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Any consulting folks?

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Re: Any consulting folks? [#permalink] New post 22 Aug 2008, 12:49
Deloitte Consulting, PwC and E&Y all have rather prestigious (albeit much smaller) "advisory" arms. These don't have anything to do with IT or audit. They are in competition with the McK/B/B's of the world. I know of at least one client that fired McK and hired PwC's advisory arm for strategic advice.

terp06 wrote:
I'd definitely put Oliver Wyman, LEK, Parthenon, ZS Associates, Cambridge Associates, and AT Kearney above Deloitte from a pure prestige perspective. Deloitte's "prestige" is held down by the fact that they do IT consulting work and audit work.

It is interesting that they mentioned PwC, KPMG, and Ernst & Young on this list. As far as I know, these firms do not engage in consulting assignments and they only do audit work. Have things changed over the past year?
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Re: Any consulting folks? [#permalink] New post 22 Aug 2008, 12:53
terp06 wrote:
I'd definitely put Oliver Wyman, LEK, Parthenon, ZS Associates, Cambridge Associates, and AT Kearney above Deloitte from a pure prestige perspective. Deloitte's "prestige" is held down by the fact that they do IT consulting work and audit work.

It is interesting that they mentioned PwC, KPMG, and Ernst & Young on this list. As far as I know, these firms do not engage in consulting assignments and they only do audit work. Have things changed over the past year?


What do you think it's called when a company hires another company on a short-term basis to assist on projects or provide advice in a particular area? How does audit work not fall into this area?

from http://www.dictionary.com:
Consulting - adjective
employed or involved in giving professional advice...
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Re: Any consulting folks? [#permalink] New post 22 Aug 2008, 13:05
jallenmorris wrote:
terp06 wrote:
I'd definitely put Oliver Wyman, LEK, Parthenon, ZS Associates, Cambridge Associates, and AT Kearney above Deloitte from a pure prestige perspective. Deloitte's "prestige" is held down by the fact that they do IT consulting work and audit work.

It is interesting that they mentioned PwC, KPMG, and Ernst & Young on this list. As far as I know, these firms do not engage in consulting assignments and they only do audit work. Have things changed over the past year?


What do you think it's called when a company hires another company on a short-term basis to assist on projects or provide advice in a particular area? How does audit work not fall into this area?

from http://www.dictionary.com:
Consulting - adjective
employed or involved in giving professional advice...


I used to work for a Big 4 accounting firm in Audit. Go read up on Sarbanes-Oxley 404 and conflicts of interest for auditors, not dictionary.com. After SOX passed in 2002, the Big 4 accounting firms had to divest their consulting practices because it was a conflict of interest. I know that Ernst & Young divested Capgemini, PwC/KPMG stopped doing consulting work, and Deloitte separated Deloitte & Touche (audit) from Deloitte Consulting (consulting). Consulting engagements are done primarily for profit. Audit engagements are done primarily for the SEC and the integrity of the financial markets.

The information above is current as of last year when I worked at a Big 4. I have no idea if anything has changed since July 2007 as I have not been keeping up on developments in the audit world.

To solaris - this is really surprising. If I were to guess, PwC was advising the firm on internal audit procedures and basically assisting them with compliance matters related to Sarbanes-Oxley. This is one of the few "advisory" related tasks that Big 4 firms are still allowed to do after SOX 404. What surprised me most is that you mentioned McKinsey was on the engagement before - I didn't think that McKinsey worked on compliance engagements very much but I could be wrong.

Please keep in mind that the above information is only accurate as of July 2007, as I haven't kept up on things. Also, please keep in mind that the above information is only accurate for the United States. I believe that other countries have far more relaxed regulations regarding the kind of work that their independent audit firms can do.

Also, these firms still provide tax advice, conduct financial due diligence and valuations, conduct accounting fraud investigations, and do various other things you would expect an accounting firm to do. All of these activities are considered to be "advisory", but not in the classic management consulting sense. If you want to call it consulting because you think it fits the description on dictionary.com, be my guest. I certainly don't. Just for fun, the guy who sold me my car on Tuesday had a title of "Sales Consultant". I thanked him for the professional advice afterwards.
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Re: Any consulting folks? [#permalink] New post 22 Aug 2008, 14:26
terp06, let's take PwC for example. I was talking specifically about the services they classify under "transactional advisory."

Don't know if the link will work:
http://www.pwc.com/Extweb/service.nsf/docid/DE587598C9F67E1685256E6D0051566D

Deloitte Consulting hires several folks from Stern for its Strategy and Operations practice, I would be very surprised if they were all for IT or audit consulting positions.

I'll take back my comment about E&Y since I don't know much about what they've been doing in the last 3-4 years.
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Re: Any consulting folks? [#permalink] New post 22 Aug 2008, 14:33
solaris1 wrote:
terp06, let's take PwC for example. I was talking specifically about the services they classify under "transactional advisory."

Don't know if the link will work:
http://www.pwc.com/Extweb/service.nsf/docid/DE587598C9F67E1685256E6D0051566D

Deloitte Consulting hires several folks from Stern for its Strategy and Operations practice, I would be very surprised if they were all for IT or audit consulting positions.

I'll take back my comment about E&Y since I don't know much about what they've been doing in the last 3-4 years.


In my opinion, transactional advisory/transaction services is not consulting work. It is accounting and financial due diligence for M&A deals. They basically conduct an "audit" of a company that is about to get acquired, but it is done for the purposes of the acquisition and not for SEC reporting purposes. Many times, a private equity firm that is looking to acquire a company will not only hire a Big 4 for transactional due diligence, but they will also hire McKinsey to look at the strategy of the company in their portfolio going forward.

E&Y and KPMG have Transaction Advisory Services and Transaction Services groups respectively as well. Within E&Y and KPMG, these are the most prestigous groups at the respective firms. They work longer hours and get compensated more than audit/tax people. They are also able to exit sometimes to smaller private equity firms and boutique investment banks.

Deloitte Consulting does have a Strategy & Operations group indeed, and it is the most prestigous group at Deloitte. However, as I mentioned, Deloitte Consulting is a separate entity from Deloitte & Touche and they are allowed to provide any services they would like. Deloitte's S&O group also hires from top MBA programs.

One last thing to keep in mind - these firms are the absolute worst at clouding their service offerings and marketing materials with all sorts of useless corporate jargon. They also change their practice names and offerings like every 3 years.
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Re: Any consulting folks? [#permalink] New post 22 Aug 2008, 14:37
Okay - I don't know that much about the Big 4, so your post helps clarify a bunch of things. Thanks.
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Re: Any consulting folks? [#permalink] New post 22 Aug 2008, 14:41
solaris1 wrote:
Okay - I don't know that much about the Big 4, so your post helps clarify a bunch of things. Thanks.


No problem. I'll admit that when I was a starry eyed undergrad, I actually joined one of these firms with the thought that I would be doing more advisory/consulting work. That was not the case at all and I got out quickly.
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Re: Any consulting folks? [#permalink] New post 22 Aug 2008, 14:44
terp06 wrote:
E&Y and KPMG have Transaction Advisory Services and Transaction Services groups respectively as well. Within E&Y and KPMG, these are the most prestigous groups at the respective firms. They work longer hours and get compensated more than audit/tax people. They are also able to exit sometimes to smaller private equity firms and boutique investment banks.


I've been working this week with some E&Y peeps from "Financial Services Advisory." Is this the same group you are referencing? I'm not sure what the backgrounds are of the guy and gal I'm working with, but I have to say that I'm thoroughly underwhelmed. I'm not sure what they're billing us at, but we could probably cut it in half and it would still be too much...
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Re: Any consulting folks? [#permalink] New post 22 Aug 2008, 14:46
ryguy904 wrote:
terp06 wrote:
E&Y and KPMG have Transaction Advisory Services and Transaction Services groups respectively as well. Within E&Y and KPMG, these are the most prestigous groups at the respective firms. They work longer hours and get compensated more than audit/tax people. They are also able to exit sometimes to smaller private equity firms and boutique investment banks.


I've been working this week with some E&Y peeps from "Financial Services Advisory." Is this the same group you are referencing? I'm not sure what the backgrounds are of the guy and gal I'm working with, but I have to say that I'm thoroughly underwhelmed. I'm not sure what they're billing us at, but we could probably cut it in half and it would still be too much...


Financial Services Advisory and Transaction Advisory Services are 2 separate practices. FSA deals primarily with banks, insurance companies, and other financial services providers - I'm not certain what their exact service offerings are. Are they completing compliance work for you?

Big 4 people generally come from state schools, have 3.0-3.5 GPAs (I actually heard a partner say one time that people with over a 3.7 are too smart to work here - they ask too many questions), and are up for working dog hours and doing mind-numbing work. They probably bill out at $200+/hour, plus 3.5 to 4 star hotel and steak dinners if they're from out of town.
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Re: Any consulting folks? [#permalink] New post 22 Aug 2008, 14:58
terp06 wrote:
Financial Services Advisory and Transaction Advisory Services are 2 separate practices. FSA deals primarily with banks, insurance companies, and other financial services providers - I'm not certain what their exact service offerings are. Are they completing compliance work for you?

Big 4 people generally come from state schools, have 3.0-3.5 GPAs (I actually heard a partner say one time that people with over a 3.7 are too smart to work here), and are up for working dog hours and doing mind-numbing work. They probably bill out at $200+/hour, plus 3.5 to 4 star hotel and steak dinners if they're from out of town.


They are helping with compliance work. $200 an hour. I was too conservative on my cut. Terp - drive down the street next week and I'll bill you out at $50/hr. Deal? ;)
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Re: Any consulting folks? [#permalink] New post 22 Aug 2008, 15:28
Tempting but that may be a conflict of interest for me :)

By the way, I think the mid-level (as in, 2-5 years out of school) folks generally bill in the 200 range, and partners in the 400-500 range. I doubt I was billing that when I was one month out of undergrad. I would conservatively peg my billing rate as a 1st year at between $120-175.

Also, I'm fairly sure that FSA and TAS bill far higher rates than audit does.
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Re: Any consulting folks? [#permalink] New post 22 Aug 2008, 16:25
solaris1 wrote:

Deloitte Consulting hires several folks from Stern for its Strategy and Operations practice, I would be very surprised if they were all for IT or audit consulting positions.


I think this is where Deloitte has branded their S&O practice well. Truth is, the practice is 90% ops and 10% strategy. I would compare it to Accenture, where they brand most positions as "management consulting", but the only real strategy work goes to their strat group (~1% of employees).
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Re: Any consulting folks? [#permalink] New post 22 Aug 2008, 18:48
PatrickBateman wrote:
solaris1 wrote:

Deloitte Consulting hires several folks from Stern for its Strategy and Operations practice, I would be very surprised if they were all for IT or audit consulting positions.


I think this is where Deloitte has branded their S&O practice well. Truth is, the practice is 90% ops and 10% strategy. I would compare it to Accenture, where they brand most positions as "management consulting", but the only real strategy work goes to their strat group (~1% of employees).


I had a sneaking suspicion that this was true. The Big 4 accounting firms are truly masters at branding their practices and creating a very polished image for new recruits - their business depends on it. You really have to do your due diligence on the actual work that you will be doing if you are considering joining one of these firms - especially if you are joining a practice that sounds like "consulting", "advisory", or "strategy". These buzz words are overused.
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Re: Any consulting folks? [#permalink] New post 22 Aug 2008, 18:51
What's compensation like at places like Deloitte Consulting? Any guesses? Say for an MBA hire? In line with McK/B/B?
I know some folks from Stern at Deloitte, but obviously I can't ask them straight up how much dough they're making.
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Re: Any consulting folks? [#permalink] New post 22 Aug 2008, 18:57
solaris1 wrote:
What's compensation like at places like Deloitte Consulting? Any guesses? Say for an MBA hire? In line with McK/B/B?
I know some folks from Stern at Deloitte, but obviously I can't ask them straight up how much dough they're making.


I think they're all in a very similar range to start out with. However, the exit opportunities out of M/B/B are incomparable to the exit opportunities out of any other consulting firms.

I think out of UG, ACN/Deloitte/Booz start out at about $55-60k and M/B/B start out at $65-75k. It's basically a wash.
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Re: Any consulting folks? [#permalink] New post 22 Aug 2008, 19:03
I just looked at profiles in the Dallas office of Bain & Company. It's a little intimidating...

http://www.bain.com/bainweb/popup_more_ ... office=126

Going through the profiles I found the following totals (might be 1 or 2 repeats as you have to refresh the page in order to see other profiles, but it shows some new and some old)

HBS - 6
Chicago GSB - 1
Kellogg - 2
Stanford - 1 (leave of absense then return)
Tuck - 2 (one was leave of absence then return)
MIT Sloan - 2
No MBA - 3 (probably each of these will be sent to get their MBA after a few years of work experience)

That's a good cross section, but certainly HBS does stand out. Note though that some of the senior people (partners) were HBS grads. This school loyalty doesn't seem surprising.
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Re: Any consulting folks? [#permalink] New post 22 Aug 2008, 19:09
That's true, Bain has looked at HBS as one of its major feeder schools in recent years. Much more so than its peer firms. For instance, last year McKinsey hired 42 people from CBS and Bain only took 7; McKinsey took 33 people from Chicago and Bain 15 odd.

I'm pretty sure the numbers of Bainies hired from HBS is significantly higher.
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Re: Any consulting folks? [#permalink] New post 22 Aug 2008, 19:15
solaris1 wrote:
That's true, Bain has looked at HBS as one of its major feeder schools in recent years. Much more so than its peer firms. For instance, last year McKinsey hired 42 people from CBS and Bain only took 7; McKinsey took 33 people from Chicago and Bain 15 odd.

I'm pretty sure the numbers of Bainies hired from HBS is significantly higher.


http://www.mckinsey.com/careers/columbi ... mates.aspx

Keep in mind that only 13 of them are in the US offices and 12 of them are in NY/Stamford/New Jersey. No Midwest or West Coast placements and only 1 in the South. Still, I'll admit, globally it is a pretty staggering #.

I'm not able to find listings for Chicago, HBS, or Kellogg to see if they have the same regional trends (i.e. Chicago/Kellogg going to the Chicago office, HBS going to Boston). Needless to say, office placements definitely influence the engagements you will be working on.
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Re: Any consulting folks? [#permalink] New post 22 Aug 2008, 19:15
It might make me consider throwing back in my HBS application if I decide to apply to M7's.
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Re: Any consulting folks? [#permalink] New post 22 Aug 2008, 19:21
Errm...McKinsey hires internal Firm/Office and Risk Management folks from CBS? Or am I not understanding this right?

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Re: Any consulting folks?   [#permalink] 22 Aug 2008, 19:21
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