I hope I havent gotten in too late, but I’d have to wholeheartedly disagree. The fact there are 150 consultants does not equate to being undervalued at all. If anything, I’d point to the fact you gain a readily established network of peers which will follow you for the remainder of your career. If like me the prospect of a full time job seems akin to a death sentence to you, having as many as 450 around your age makes for a hugely collegiate environment and softens the blow. But of course, if your idea of after work fun is socialising with balding bankers (because banking is pretty much what they do), combined with conversations about the likes of golf and cricket, by all means go for it!
With all due respect also, the standard of colleagues you will be working with - benchmarked against industry - will be much higher in consulting than CF. Deloitte consulting is top 5 across the industry. Thats as far as revenues, reputation and implementation are each concerned. Either way you look at it, you are keeping the door open for yourself, and maximising future career prospects. With all due respect, CF at Deloitte is where people who couldnt get into a proper investment bank go. I promise you, every individual you meet there will have applied for and been rejected by at least 10 superior institutions, before taking up the offer with Deloitte. CF at Delloite is very far indeed from being anything close to resembling a market leader. What adds further insult to injury, is that the strategy consultants at deloitte get involved in exactly the same type of work that the CF guys do from time to time.
The CIMA is also the industry standard as far as consulting is concerned, so why waste 3 years of your life studying for an ACA alongside work which will open virtually the same doors for you? Unless you want to then go on to do audit or tax, the distinction between the CIMA and ACA is pretty negligible. Whats more, deloitte will PAY for you to go off and get an MBA. Thats as much as $50k. I hope it dawns on you that an MBA is worth infinitely more than any ACA qualification ever will. The skillset you will gain via CF is strong dont get me wrong. But stronger than in consulting?! I’d seriously reccommend reading up on what CF actually entails. Learning stock valuation, the likes of EBITDA and debt cap calculations - you are seriously pigeonholing yourself into a life of pure finance. If thats what you want, go for it. Consulting is much more entreuprenurial. The skills equip you with the ability to walk into management roles across ALL industries (including finance), and the option to start something up of your own with gained expertise.
Perhaps I havent been entirely convincing, but for me its a no brainer.