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consulting outlook in 2013

 
#1 consulting outlook in 2013
20/11/2012 20:01

Confusednewbie

Hello everyone,

This is my 1st post here, so please accept my apologies if I deviate from set procedures of posting.

Background - I have a master's in Innovation mgmt on top of an engineering degree. I graduated in Dec 2011 and have been trying really hard to break into consulting.

I have been applying for jobs whilst freelancing for a friend's firm. However, after nearly a year of trial and error, I am ready to accept defeat with my chin up (for, I tried earnestly) and all primed to go back home to start my career.

However, my heart tells me to stay and give one final push in the new year.

Can anyone shed light on the outlook for the consulting sector? I see good figures on the MCA reports, but I would be really grateful if anyone could share some real insight.

After a year of frustration, my ability to think clearly is fading and would be grateful for any advice.

Many thanks

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#2 RE: consulting outlook in 2013
20/11/2012 22:22

baykus to Confusednewbie (#1)

Hi Confused. Getting a string of rejections can be a very tough thing to go through so you have my sympathies. This is a tough environment to be a fresh graduate, and my sense is that it's not getting that much better (Tony and others can provide data instead of my "sense").

If you have had such a long spell without success you do probably have to look at changing what you're doing rather than hoping that you keep doing it and the world changes though. Are you aiming too high? Do you have the right qualifications? Does your CV read well? Have you even made it to the interview stage?

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#3 RE: consulting outlook in 2013
21/11/2012 09:15

Bushy Eyebrow Partner to baykus (#2)

The issue could be your qualifications. A "masters in innovation" sounds like a very fluffy, non-academic subject, perhaps akin to being a step or two above media studies, tourism with hospitality, film studies, or sports science. Plus, these are tough times. Even in boom years, it's difficult to get a job with a decent consulting firm. During a recession... well, even more difficult.

In any event, why have you been applying only for consultancy jobs? Over a 1-year period, surely you should have been firing off your CV pretty much anywhere?

Also, does your friend's firm have a vacancy? It sounds like you're pretty much "in there" anyway? Or is that just a cover-up story to make it look like you've not been sitting idle for the past year (nothing wrong with that at all, btw).

I think you just have to hang in there and keep on going...

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#4 RE: consulting outlook in 2013
21/11/2012 09:15

Tony Restell (Top-Consultant.com) to Confusednewbie (#1)

Sorry to hear of the difficulties you've been having getting into the consulting industry.

First things first - you mention you may have to give up and "go back home" to start your career. Can I ask firstly where you're from and what your work entitlement is in UK. Do you need sponsorship / a visa? If so, this may be the root of your problems.

In terms of the market, the MCA figures show the consulting industry is now growing revenues by a few percentage points annually. This may sound encouraging, but this has to be seen against the backdrop of several years of the market growing at ~15% per annum in the period running up to the collapse of Lehmans.

Profitability has been hard to maintain at firms in the face of downwards fee rate pressures. Combined with the low growth rate, this has made them much more cautious in their hiring activities than was the case only a few years ago. Most experienced hire positions are being advertised to fill specific project / skills gaps in firms; whilst graduate hiring is seeing start dates ebb and flow as confidence about the pipeline of work fluctuates.

Let me know about the visa situation and I may be able to advise further

Tony Restell

Founder, http://www.Top-Consultant.com and http://www.Social-Hire.com

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#5 RE: consulting outlook in 2013
21/11/2012 10:26

Bushy Eyebrow Partner to Tony Restell (Top-Consultant.com) (#4)

First things first - you mention you may have to give up and "go back home" to start your career. Can I ask firstly where you're from and what your work entitlement is in UK. Do you need sponsorship / a visa? If so, this may be the root of your problems.

Very well spotted!

I almost can't bear going to recruitment fairs any more. 95% of the people who approach the stand are just looking for work visas. It is like the real-life equivalent of being spammed.

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#6 RE: consulting outlook in 2013
21/11/2012 10:46

Confusednewbie to baykus (#2)

@Everyone, My sincere gratitude to each one of you for taking the time and effort to reply.

@Baykus - I humbly think I have the right level of qualifications and don't think I am aiming too high.

@Partner - It was a master's in Innovation mgmt & Entrepreneurship and it had more to do with innovation processes than design centric product development. So, I definitely see it as academic course. Besides, It was from a B-School.

Yes, over the course of the year, I have been drafting applications (not aiming at the sky) to companies outside the consulting space too.

Sorry to not have mentioned clearly, my friend's company is an export house and I was helping my friend with business analysis and strategy advice. Moving on to the question of filling the gaps. I would say that I started helping out my friend in order to avoid future gaps rather than vice versa. Besides, the work we did there together has already started to have a positive effect on the company's purse.

@Tony - Sorry, If I didn't come across clearly in my 1st post. I am an Indian national on a Post Study Work visa. So, I think I am safe to assume that, the problem doesn't stem from that front.

To everyone, the reason why I asked if I should hang on just for 2-3 months is because, after a string of hitting dead ends, I have got a couple of responses to my speculative applications. Both the companies (boutique strategy firms) have got back saying they would like to touch base in the new year.

Whilst, these incidents are not the core reason why I would like to stay for one last push, I am just curious to know if the consulting sector might have plans to hire in the new year.

Again, my most sincere gratitude to everyone of you. Maybe, it is my lack of a solid mentor that is the root of the problem.

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#7 RE: consulting outlook in 2013
21/11/2012 10:49

Confusednewbie to Bushy Eyebrow Partner (#5)

Haha, I do have the required papers in place. No spamming! I promise!

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#8 RE: consulting outlook in 2013
21/11/2012 11:39

presidentbartlet to Bushy Eyebrow Partner (#5)

First things first - you mention you may have to give up and "go back home" to start your career. Can I ask firstly where you're from and what your work entitlement is in UK. Do you need sponsorship / a visa? If so, this may be the root of your problems.

Very well spotted!

I almost can't bear going to recruitment fairs any more. 95% of the people who approach the stand are just looking for work visas. It is like the real-life equivalent of being spammed.

Ditto, I've given up going for that exact reason.

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