Boston Consulting Group Associate Interview Questions

Updated 27 Sep 2014
Updated 27 Sep 2014
107 Interview Reviews

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Associate Interview

Anonymous Interview Candidate
Anonymous Interview Candidate
Application Details

I applied online. The process took 5 days - interviewed at Boston Consulting Group.

Interview Details

First Round Interviews:

1st Interview:

- 15 minute fit: very standard questions (tell me about yourself, a time where you were a leader, etc) nothing out of the ordinary.
- 30 minute case: determining why the long distance sector of a telecom company is losing revenues. Had 2 exhibits (one showing income statement now and 10 yrs ago; the other showing the market size as well as the market share of us vs competition).

2nd interview:

- 15 minute fit: again very standard behavioral questions.
- 30 minute case: customers of cars were dissatisfied and you had to figure out why and what to do about it.

Second Round Interviews:

1st interview:
- 45 minutes to read over 15 slides and figure out a recommendation. You had to choose 7 slides that you thought best represented the problem and write 1 executive summary slide that went over recommendations, reasons and risks.
-45 minutes to go over the above package with a principal (15 mins of that was fit)

2nd interview:

- 15 mins fit - very standard with heavy focus on why BCG
- 30 mins case - figuring out why the IT department of a pharma company was losing profits (couple of exhibits)

3rd interview:

- 45 minute very light/casual chat with a partner. It was really testing whether you're a good fit for the company and felt very natural.

Interview Questions
  • The written case was difficult in that there wasn't very much time to go through all the slides, do the math required and write the summary slide. Ended up being a serious time crunch.   Answer Question
Negotiation Details
No need to negotiate.
Accepted Offer
Positive Experience
Difficult Interview

Other Interview Reviews for Boston Consulting Group

  1. 2 people found this helpful  

    Associate Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate  in  London, England (UK)
    Anonymous Interview Candidate in London, England (UK)
    Application Details

    I applied online. The process took 4 weeks - interviewed at Boston Consulting Group.

    Interview Details

    Applied in the summer recruitment campaign, where there are fewer job roles on offer, and I assume fewer interview spots are given. CV and cover letter sent online, received an email inviting to interview within a couple of weeks. All interviews took place at the London office (which is really nice!).

    First round:
    - Numerical test, very similar to GMAT numerical questions. The questions aren't that difficult, but the time pressure makes this quite tough.
    - Case study on laptop, multiple choice questions based on a fictional case. Most of these are about drawing info from graphs and tables, and doing longer calculations than in the numerical test. Tough to prepare, just go and give it a shot.
    - 1 x interview with Project Leader. Standard format, 15 minutes personal experience questions talking about motivation and past experience. 20 minutes case interview. 5-10 minutes questions for the interviewer. If you've prepared well enough for case style interviewing, then the case won't surprise. I found that I was given a lot of detail, seeing the root of the problem was quite difficult, and there were many factors to think about. The cases were usually based on a real project that the interviewer had worked on previously, so they know the case inside out! In the first round, I was given a falling profits/market share case.
    NOTE: I was told that getting through to the second round is based on your performance in the case interview and CV/cover letter. The test results are used to discriminate between Maybe candidates.

    Second round:
    - 2 x Project leader/Principal interviews. Exactly the same format as in the first round.

    Final round:
    - 3 x Partner interviews. Same format again, although one of my interviews was almost completely calculations based, I found this really tough. Partners definitely expect you to lead the case more, they don't seem to give much guidance along the way - they want you to own the business problem like a real consultant would.

    Notes:
    I was told that the hiring decision is not based purely on your final round performance. Partners do consider the feedback from interviewers in the previous rounds. I've interviewed at a few top consulting firms, and BCG interviewers stood out for how friendly and welcoming they were. When you're answering the personal experience questions, you get a real sense that the interviewer is genuinely interested in getting to know you properly. The recruiting staff are incredibly welcoming and helpful, they really calmed my nerves in the waiting room, and were quick to respond with a decision. Partners give their decision on the same day.

    Top tip:
    When you're planning your kick off or doing calculations, get it all down on paper, it really helps you communicate your line of thinking. Make some recommendations at the end of your case before you're asked to. Really try to own the case and lead it, treat the interviewer as a real client, don't expect them to guide you along.

    Interview Questions
    • Your manager has told you that you'll be starting a project in industry X next week, but he doesn't know any more details. How would you start researching the industry, what things would you look at?   Answer Question
    Accepted Offer
    Positive Experience
    Difficult Interview
  2.  

    Associate Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate
    Anonymous Interview Candidate
    Application Details

    I applied through an employee referral. The process took 3 weeks - interviewed at Boston Consulting Group.

    Interview Details

    interview conducted at BCG offices. Everybody from the reception to interviewees were nice and welcoming, and wanted me to feel part of the team. Case question was challenging and I was not able to stay structured in my reasoning. interviewer did not assist and stayed neutral.

    Interview Questions
    No Offer
    Positive Experience
    Difficult Interview
  3.  

    Associate Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate  in  Mexico, Distrito Federal (Mexico)
    Anonymous Interview Candidate in Mexico, Distrito Federal (Mexico)
    Application Details

    I applied through college or university. The process took 3 weeks - interviewed at Boston Consulting Group in September 2014.

    Interview Details

    They went to my university to recruit. They gave us an exam with 20 questions in 20 minutes and we handed in our CV.
    They set up two back to back case interviews and another exam.
    Two more back to back interviews (this time with the partners).
    They made an offer.

    Interview Questions
    • Tell me a time you have failed at something and how did that make you feel.   Answer Question
    Negotiation Details
    I did not negotiate. Their offer was really good and so there was no need.
    Accepted Offer
    Positive Experience
    Difficult Interview
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  5.  

    Associate Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate
    Anonymous Interview Candidate
    Interview Details

    first round, and then second round.. not much people get invited to the second round. They do reimburse all travel expenses, very nice. One person was nice the other was not: almost stress interview-- never smiled throughout the whole process!

    Interview Questions
    • for foreign offices, you are required to do some translation test   Answer Question
    No Offer
  6.  

    Associate Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate
    Anonymous Interview Candidate
    Application Details

    I applied online. The process took 2+ weeks - interviewed at Boston Consulting Group in July 2014.

    Interview Details

    Really rigorous interview process, started with the classic case interview with one of the firms senior members which lasted 40 minutes. Business problem was challenging, however, interviewer was friendly and appreciated that I did not become flustered throughout the process. Followed by an online aptitude/business knoweledge test, this was very tough and one has to really make sure that they don't make any mistakes

    Interview Questions
    • When giving recommendations, needed to show better business judgement. Asked some of the ramifications of one of the recommendations and my response was superficial   Answer Question
    No Offer
    Positive Experience
    Difficult Interview
  7.  

    Associate Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate  in  Tokyo (Japan)
    Anonymous Interview Candidate in Tokyo (Japan)
    Interview Details

    I had an initial phone interview, was then invited to a face-to-face interview in the office. The 1st interview went pretty good. The interviewer was friendly and I was able to solve the case with little help. The 2nd interview was scheduled the following week. I had a terrible experience with this one. First, the interviewer was late for 10 min (not sure if he did it on purpose). Then when he finally arrived, he just gave me a stack of paper, asked me to solve the case, and said he would be back in 25 min to see what I have to say. So for the next half an hour, I was just sitting there, working on my paper test. The worst thing was that the whole thing was in Japanese, and I didn't get to ask any clarifying questions!!! When the interviewer came back to the room, he asked me to present my findings in Japanese (totally didn't expect that since the first two interviews were in English). After the case, we had a short talk and he asked me all the typical interview questions.

    Interview Questions
    No Offer
    Difficult Interview
  8. 3 people found this helpful  

    Associate Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate
    Anonymous Interview Candidate
    Interview Details

    applied through my school, had 2 rounds of interviews (3 interviews in each round)

    Interview Questions
    Negotiation Details
    no negotiation
    Accepted Offer
  9.  

    Associate Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate
    Anonymous Interview Candidate
    Application Details

    I applied online. The process took 3 months - interviewed at Boston Consulting Group in March 2014.

    Interview Details

    The hiring proces was as i had expected, although the interviewers were more friendly then I had anticipated. Overall I experienced the hiring and interview process as very pleasant. Focus was, next to the cases, on personal development. How did you develop over the past years, how would you like to develop yourself in the years to come, etc..

    Interview Questions
    • Compared to about three years ago, what are three major changes that you, as a person, have been through, and how do you look back on these changes.   Answer Question
    Negotiation Details
    No negotiation possible. Only about the start date.
    Accepted Offer
    Positive Experience
    Difficult Interview
  10. 2 people found this helpful  

    Associate Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate
    Anonymous Interview Candidate
    Interview Details

    Referred internally, called in for two first round interviews a week or so later. The interviewers were extremely personable during the introductions and behavioral questions. When we got into the cases, I stumbled a bit, but they tactfully urged me in the right direction. I knew I wasn't going to get called back for second rounds after bungling one of the cases, but they spared me a lot of embarrassment and then gave me constructive feedback afterwards.

    Interview Questions
    • When one interviewer saw that I was writing out the math, he asked me to do specific calculations in my head, without pen and paper. Being put on the spot made it very difficult.   View Answer
    No Offer
    Positive Experience
    Difficult Interview

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