Here are answers to the most common questions we receive, plus links to additional information you may find helpful on this site.
Q: Do I need to have prior consulting experience to apply to BCG?
A: No. Although you are more likely to be familiar with case interviews if you have consulting experience, we welcome applicants from all intellectual disciplines, and from different industry backgrounds.
Q: I’m interested in digital technologies, what are my options at BCG?
A: First of all, much of BCG’s work now involves helping organisations on their digital endeavours, so as a generalist consultant, it is likely you will work on many digital projects. BCG has a large and growing number of consultants and experts who combine the full consulting skill set with deep digital, technology, and transformation expertise.
If you wish to work with our digitally-focused Technology Advantage Practice which works with clients across all industries to build competitive advantage through their use of data, technology and digital solutions, please mention in the application form, that you are interested in interviewing for the Technology Advantage Group in the comments box after you select your three office locations.
In addition, Digital BCG includes:
To apply for these roles, please apply directly on their careers website.
Q: Do I need to specify my GMAT score when I apply?
A: No, but please feel free to include it on your CV, if you wish. Some offices may require your GMAT scores in advance of your first round interview.
Q: I understand I can apply for up to three BCG offices at once. How does this process work?
A: BCG has more than 90 offices worldwide, and many recruit regularly from IESE. When you submit your application through the dedicated IESE online link, it is pooled directly to screening teams in the offices you specify you would like to work. These teams will then consider your application in order of your marked preferences and advise the IESE International recruiting team whether or not they would like to invite you to a first-round interview. You will interview for one office only.
Q: Do I need to speak the local languages of the offices I am applying to?
A: In almost all circumstances, yes. Only on very rare occasions are BCGers able to work in a region where they do not speak the local language. Please visit the application process page for more information regarding what languages are required for each office.
Q: I’m interested in lots of BCG offices. How do I narrow my choice to just three?
A: Please think carefully about which offices you most want to work for, and assign them a percentage weighting, in order of preference. You should have good reasons for a particular choice such as relevant work or life. And please be honest! It is rarely possible to make an immediate transfer to another office if you receive an offer.
Q: Are some BCG offices more popular than others?
A: Some of our offices receive an extremely high level of applications. For example, London, Singapore, San Francisco, and New York are popular places to work. This does not mean you should not apply to these offices, but we encourage you to consider your geographic preferences carefully, particularly if you have experience in other regions where we have offices.
Q: Can I speak with a current BCGer before applying?
A: We actively encourage you to do this as much as possible, either by attending our recruiting events and speaking with IESE alumni within BCG, requesting a contact via IESErecruiting@bcg.com, or as a first step, speaking with your classmates who are BCG Ambassadors on Campus (BCGers currently taking part in the MBA programme).(See Tab BCGers on Campus).
Q: How do I apply?
A: Apply via the dedicated IESE link, and attach a cover letter and CV.
Q: Do I need to include my undergraduate transcripts or grades?
A: Transcripts are not necessary although some offices may want your degree class or GPA from your undergraduate studies, so you may wish to include this information on your CV.
Q: What happens if I am on International Exchange during your recruiting process?
A: You should submit your application online as normal, but please make sure you inform us as soon as possible if you will be out of Barcelona during the interview period by emailing us at IESEecruiting@bcg.com. Usually we are able to make arrangements for you to be interviewed elsewhere or via video conference.
Q: How does the first-round interview process work?
A: The first round usually consists of two face-to-face, or video conference, case interviews of 45 minutes each. The interviews run back to back and are mostly held at the IESE campus. We try and schedule everybody in one day and our consultants fly in from a number of different offices to interview. All our interviewers are fully trained. You can expect each interview to open with a brief introductory chat and discussion of your CV. The case will then take from 20–25 minutes, and the meeting will conclude with an opportunity for you to ask questions.
Q: Can I find out who my interviewers will be beforehand?
A: Due to client commitments our interviewers are subject to change at short notice so we invite candidates to arrive 15 minutes in advance of their scheduled start time, when we will give you a short biography of each of your two interviewers.
Q: How can I best prepare myself for a BCG interview?
A: We recommend reaching out to our BCG Ambassadors on Campus to ask for interview practice. You can find their names under the 'BCGers on Campus' page. In addition, we encourage you to take advantage of any opportunity on campus to familiarise yourself with the case interview process – attend Consulting Club events; tackle and practice the cases, and speak to Career Services and classmates with a consulting background. Also, please take a look at our case prep videos and interview tips and advice.
Q: Do you ever use video conferencing for your interviews?
A: First-round interviews are often face-to-face, but VC interviews are also becoming common. Please note that a VC interview does not in any way put you at a disadvantage.
Q: Will I receive feedback on my interviews?
A: Yes. If you are successfully short-listed for a second round of interviews, one of the consultants who interviewed you should contact you directly to give you feedback. You will also be provided with their contact details in our decision email. If you are not successful in the first round you will be sent an email with the contact details of one of your interviewers so you can get in touch and ask for feedback. All of our consultants are more than happy to provide feedback, and we encourage you to take this opportunity.
Q: If I am successful in getting through to decision-round interviews where will these take place?
A: Decision-round interviews usually take place in the relevant local office (although occasionally they will be conducted via VC).
Q: If I am successful in getting through to decision round interviews can I speak to someone in the local office beforehand?
A: All communication and logistical arrangements for final round interviews are arranged by local offices, so you will be in direct touch with them.
Q: If I apply for a summer internship and am unsuccessful, can I apply again for a full-time position in the autumn?
A: Definitely. We strongly encourage you to do so, given that you will be that much better prepared for your case interviews by your second year of study, and will also have gained invaluable additional experience during your internship. We regularly hire students from the full-time recruiting pool in autumn who either did not apply or did not make it through our summer application process.
Q: If I am successful in getting a summer internship in a BCG office, can I then transfer to a different office if I get a full-time offer?
A: For your summer internship application, we strongly advise you to apply to the office where you would want to start your full-time career after graduation. If you are successful in getting an internship with a specific office and they then make you a full-time offer after the summer period ends, they are making this offer based on your fit with that particular office. It is therefore in no way guaranteed that you could transfer the full-time offer to another office. Of course, if you have exceptional circumstances that mean you need to consider a change of geography, BCG will do everything it can to assist you.
Q: Does BCG provide assistance with securing local visas?
A: To the very best of our ability, yes. However, please be aware that we are a global company and that there are some restrictions in specific offices which make obtaining visas more difficult. For example, at present it is not possible to get a visa for a Summer Internship in our U.S. offices unless you are a U.S. national, or hold a valid work permit.