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MBA Management Consulting Job Description

Consultants are hired as advisors to corporations. They tackle a wide variety of business problems and provide solutions for their clients. Depending on the size and chosen strategy of the firm, these problems can be as straightforward as researching a new market or as complex as totally rethinking the client's organization, including whether to acquire a related company worth hundreds of millions of dollars or how to reduce the size of their work force by thousands of employees. Firms cover the scope from strategy, where only advice and direction are provided, to implementation, where firms actually work with the client to implement recommendations. The work of consulting is data collection and analysis. Consultants add value by collecting information that is hard to get - often by pulling it out of people's heads and then analyzing it in a way that defines attractive ways to solve managerial and competitive problems.

By and large, the things people like about consulting are similar across the board. They like the variety of working in different industries and functional areas for many different clients and the intellectual challenge of pushing themselves to the limit as they tackle complex business problems.

Strategy Consulting

Focuses on providing top executive officers in Fortune 500 companies with strategic or operational advice. For that, they get paid the highest fees and have the most prestige. Although some firms differentiate themselves by specializing in particular industries or functions, most strategy consultants tend to be generalists who work on a wide variety of projects and industries. Such firms include Bain, Boston Consulting Group, Booz Allen & Hamilton and McKinsey.

General Management Consulting

Provides a wide range of services depending on client needs. These services include strategic advice, information systems support, cost control, productivity enhancement, activity-based costing, competitive analysis, marketing strategy and many others. Most of these firms have a recognized expertise in business process reengineering. Such firms include: Accenture, Cap Gemini Ernst & Young, Deloitte Consulting, BearingPoint, PwC, Diamond Cluster, IBM Business Consulting Services and Scott Madden.

Boutique Strategy Consulting

Includes a significant subgroup of firms that have chosen to specialize in a particular industry, process, or a specialized type of consulting. These firms are typically smaller and work with a more specialized group of clients. Such firms include: Kurt Salmon, CSC Index, North Highland Group, and Doblin Group, among others.

Human Resource Consulting Firms like Towers Perrin, The Hay Group, William Mercer, and Hewitt Consulting fall into this category because they all focus on the specialty area of human resources.

Technology & Systems Consulting

Focus on designing, implementing, and/or managing the information and computer systems for their clients. This may require everything from analyzing the client's informational needs, to acquiring new hardware systems, to writing computer code to running the new system. Such firms include: SAP and Keane Consulting Group.

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