Hi everyone, having gone through wikijobs and successfully scoring an offer from Accenture I thought I should list my experience on a single page.
I have also received an offer from PwC (Management consulting), if interested follow the link below:
Right so I took a bit of a different route from a few other candidates as I thought of applying for Accenture’s boot camp rather than going straight in for an interview, if you don’t yet know what the boot camp is, Google Accenture Boot Camp. The good thing about putting in an application for the boot camp instead of just a direct application for the ACG is that if you get selected to attend the boot camp you are then fast tracked to the 2nd round assessment, if you don’t get for the boot camp but they still like your application they will put you through to the first round interview.
The application for the boot camp I found was very interesting and pretty much the research you do for the application is all you need for the telephone interview, that is if you do the research properly and not just researching into what other people have written in their applications (:P). The best thing about all the questions is the limit which is 3000 characters ( approx. 500 words), not too short that you cant really write anything and not too long that you’ll run out of words before exhausting the word limit. But then again I didn’t really reach the limit in all the questions so you don’t really have to write up to the max limit.
First question is why you would like a place on Accenture’s Boot camp? You really just have to express your interest in consulting and how you can work in this industry and then lead it onto saying how the boot camp is going to be helpful and how much of an insight you would be able to get into Accenture.
The next question is about your extra curriculars, then its about Why Accenture? I structured this in a bullet point format, I figured it was the best way to list all the reasons I had to join and how accenture’s environment fits in with me (or the other way round). Then the question comes about how Accenture uses technology to help its clients? I guess this is where they are expecting you to butter them up a bit. You can find answers to this question by scouring through their main website. They have 100s of solutions that they have provided to their clients, pick up a few and discuss how they are great and how they help businesses n blah blah blah. Then its finally about what your day-to-day activities will be? I guess for this one just be honest like you will be doing working for Accenture, not just analysing and improving businesses, a little bit about what you’ll be doing outside of the strictly work activities.
Surprisingly there are no psychometric tests following the application, if they like they’ll get back to you to arrange an interview (in my case a telephone int). I had to wait just over 2 weeks for my interview to be arranged.
firstly they do emphasise that its not a telephone interview rather its an INFORMAL CHAT!, i dont quite agree to that as they have a set of questions to ask, anyways moving on. The questions i got asked were as follows:
How did you find out about Boot camp?
I didnt give a one word answer, like the web or careers guy, it seemed to work!
How is Accenture structured as a company?
my answer wasnt brilliant on this one but i gave her an idea that know about the 3 main functions of the business and the industries it works in.
Tell me about a time when you had to in an unfamiliar team?
Tell me about a time when you took your own initiative?
What will you bring to the bootcamp?
this is your time to speak, use it!
This is as far as i can remember from my intreview, dont think there was anything else.
I got a call back from them the next morning to let me know I was through.
The experience of the bootcamp itself is absolutely amazing, all the activities that they make you do are soo exciting and everything set aside the people you meet there are great, and that’s not just Accenture employees it’s the 29 other candidates attending bootcamp too. Unfortunately I am not allowed to disclose what you actually do in the 48hrs but I must say it is a life experience that you would enjoy the most and you would actually be able to take back loads from it, unlike some other training/skills sessions/events. I would also like to add that at the bootcamp they are not assessing you in anyway, so it wont count towards you ultimately getting hired.
A week after the bootcamp you will be attend the 2nd round assessment day which is around 4 hours, it might seem a bit quick but the assessments are tightly packed and just testing your performance under pressure.
First comes the IN TRAY exercise, this is just a time pressured exercise to check whether you can prioritise in a very short time. You are provided with a booklet containging a few pages of description, a few emails, a few tables and a few graphs. You are also given an A3 size paper which has 4 sections on the front page each of which refer to issues listed in the booklet. I don’t exactly remebr what all the four sections were but as far as I remember they were FINANCIAL, PROJECT DELIVERY and OTHER. So you had to list out all the issues from the booklet in these sections and then the top out of the other 3 sections in the OTHERS section. Once you are donw with this TURN OVER, once again do not forget to turn over the page, I did and got into a bit of a trouble and hence could not complete the second bit. The second bit isthat you have to write an email to your manager stating the issues identified in the first bit, I realised I had to do that in the last 3 minutes and so just scribbled something quickly. If you don’t do well in this exercise don’t let it ruin the rest of your day, there is a lot more they have to judge you on.
Next I was taken to do the case study, you are given a few pages of a report and 20 minutes to go through it making notes on what the companies problems are and how they can be addressed. My case study was on an electricity company with falling turnover. Then you are taken to an interview pod to be interviewed on the case study. Questions I got asked were, what are the issues the company is facing at the moment, how can you advise them, and in what order will you implement those changes? The best way to go around the case study is practice the example provided on the website the format is the same, quickly go through case study in the reading time and make notes on the issues, time is valuable here you do not have a lot of it. For the solutions don’t just come up with operational solutions think a bit further as to what the strategic solutions could be and do mention in the interview what the operational solutions are and what the strategic solutions are.
Then it is the group exercise, as this AC was only for people who had attended the bootcamp so we knew each other already so got along quite well, no problems at all. The exercise was that we had to transform the Battersea Power Station in London into a museum to be ready for the 2012 Olympics, with a theme around UK moving forward but it couldn’t be anything around Sports or Energy. We had 12 months to do this, and so we had to create a timeline for what had to be done in order to achieve this. Half way through the time was dropped by 6 months and hence we had to do some changes to accommodate this. To get the best out of you in the group exercise try not to be quite or be too loud, somewhere in the middle is good, appreciate others ideas, and if disagreeing do it politely stating the reasons and possibly giving an alternative approach. At the end everyone gets 30 seconds to present a certain bit of the discussion, so I would suggest that in the last 5 minutes discuss what each person is going to talk about in the 30 seconds. They will stop you at 30 seconds!
Last bit is the final interview, it is by the same manager who took you case study interview. Questions I got asked were, how did your day go? I explained all the different bits of the day and which ones went well and which didn’t. Then he asked what competencies do you think a consultant should have?, I stated 3 and then he asked tell me when have you showed these during today? I was caught a bit there as I couldn’t think of one of the competencies I had mentioned. He then asked me why I wanted to do consulting and then what do consultants do. I think I had a couple of more questions which I cant remember at the moment!
I received a call the day after next to let me know I had been successful in the whole procedure. All in all found the procedure pretty quick (lasted less than 6 weeks) and fun. Any questions about it do get in touch, and one piece of advice, do apply for the Boot Camp!
Good Luck to all!