Did you know that more than 60% of candidates get rejected solely on a basis of their results in psychometric tests?
The Boston Consulting Group, BCG, is an American international management consulting company with 90 offices in over 50 countries around the world. It is the world’s top company for management and strategic consulting: working for clients in private, public and not-for-profit sectors including over two thirds of the Fortune 500 companies.
BCG is one of the most competitive companies to get into: with only very few job spots being open each year and thousands of applicants you will face competitors who are all from the best universities and have had some work experience. Therefore, you need to do absolutely all you can to maximize your chances.
Read the guide below taking you step-by step through all stages of the BCG recruitment process.
BCG job applications and assessment process is divided into 5 stages:
At this stage, you will be asked fill in the online application form. Make sure you give all the necessary information, as this will form the basis for any future references. Do spend some extra time to make sure that this form will reflect both – you as a person, but also as an ideal candidate for BCG.
When it comes to submitting your completed application, earlier is always better – often candidates are assessed on a rolling basis, so submitting early increases your chances. Always double-check the application form for any mistakes before submission.
The online form is likely to also include some additional questions such as:
Make sure you have a copy of all the information you have provided. You may be asked for details during the interview. Know your CV inside out. If the information in your application and information shared during the call are different, your application may be disregarded for future processing.
Throughout your application make sure to refer to some top competencies sought after by BCG recruiters. Show examples when you demonstrated them – both in your online form but also during interviews. These competencies can include:
After you complete the online application form, you will find out whether you have progressed to the next stage of the recruitment stage – this will consist of online aptitude tests.
Depending on the position you apply to, these may include BCG’s:
The BCG Numerical Reasoning Test will examine your ability to understand a previously unseen passage – as well as its data. You will be required to perform basic GCSE Maths calculations.
Do not worry if you have not done Maths in a while! The complexity of this does not lie in the knowledge tested but in the time pressure and stress involved. When taking your Numerical Reasoning Test, you will have less than a minute to read the question, analyse data provided and perform the necessary calculations.
The only way to succeed is to take practice tests beforehand. This way you familiarise yourself with the types of questions and become more confident. Learn how to manage your stress in a safe environment and you will not have to face rejection – just because you were unfamiliar with the process.
Start practicing assessment tests today!.
Learn more about Numerical Reasoning Tests
For more hints on how to pass a numerical reasoning test, visit our YouTube channel
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Check if you got the correct answer at the bottom of the page.
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In the same way a Numerical Reasoning Test examines how confident a candidate is in their numerical calculations, BCG’s Verbal Reasoning Test strives to identify whether a candidate can accurately extract the relevant information from a previously unseen passage of text to analyse whether subsequent statements are true, false, or impossible to say based on the information contained in the passage of text.
For more hints on how to pass a verbal reasoning test, visit our YouTube channel
BCG’s Verbal Reasoning Test may be more difficult for non-native English speakers. However, by practicing Verbal Reasoning Test questions beforehand, you can begin to understand the specific way in which texts are built, and questions asked.
Learn more about Verbal Reasoning Tests
Remember, you will have around 45 seconds to answer questions like the following
Got the answer? Check it out at the bottom of the page.
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If you have successfully passed the online tests stage, you will be invited to a telephone interview with a professional from BCG. This is an opportunity for you to demonstrate your interest and potential skills that make you suitable for the particular role that you applied to.
This interview will be competency based (CBI) and will be focused around your CV and personal motivations, so review your CV and prepare examples of situations where you demonstrated key skills of ideal candidates: teamwork, determination, creativity, initiative, resistance, leadership, etc.
You should prepare some ideas of examples that you can later use during your interview based on the most common types of interview questions .
Make sure you find a quiet space where you will not be disturbed.
Want to know what questions could come up in your BCG interview? Graduates First can help with the Question Identifier Tool (QIT). You can find it here.
The next stage of the BCG recruitment process is an Assessment Centre, during which you will be assessed by senior members of the relevant business areas across two exercises. These may take form of the:
This assessment examines your ability to communicate and reach conclusions as part of a team. Throughout this task you will be observed by BCG recruiters, so try to demonstrate your strengths; share and explain your ideas, but also be open to build on somebody else’s input and develop on their points. Try your best to persuade others towards your opinions and also ask thought-provoking questions. Above all – stay calm and speak in a confident and clear manner.
Learn more about Group Exercises
This exercise will mainly test you on your communication skills. Your assessors will also be looking at your body language and tone to see how you would cope with delivering professional presentations, taking part in group discussions or explaining your opinions.
Always stand straight, make regular eye contact with everyone in the audience and do not speak too fast.
Learn more about Presentation Exercises
Congratulations – you are almost there. The Final Interview is the last stage of the BCG application process. You just need to focus on a few more things.
Learn as much as you can about BCG and its corporate culture. You need to have a high level of understanding of BCG mission, any relevant recent big news and its future developments. Think about the retail industry as a whole too – do you see any structural changes that you could talk about?
The answer to questions will depend on the particular line of business and role you applied to. Since each position requires certain set of skills and some pre-requisite knowledge, make sure to do extensive research to know exactly what is required for this role.
BCG interviews are likely to involve many competency and motivational questions, with many questions looking to examine your general business acumen. Here we provide some of the most common BCG interview questions and tips on how to approach them.
These questions may include:
To answer this question correctly, you need to refer to some sort of conflict you were involved with: it is not sufficient to say you are a not a problematic person and have never been in a conflict with anyone. Conflicts are a natural occurrence at a workplace. Think of a situation where your opinion differed to someone else, explain the context and give reasons as to why you believed your idea was superior, but don’t be dismissive or arrogant. Show appreciation and understanding for other team members and describe how you managed to reach a conclusion, referring to skills such as: communication, compromise, and professionalism.
To answer this interview question, refer to your academic interests, extracurricular activities, as well as general passions and hobbies. Although these do not have to suit the position you applied to – make sure to stress specific skills you learnt or experiences you gathered. For example, if you competed in sports, do not just focus on how much fun it was: stress the discipline and hard work it required, and the team skills you developed, etc.
You may also be asked Commercial Awareness questions, including:
To answer these BCG interview questions, draw upon your knowledge of the company and the industry that you should have gathered when preparing for the interview. Be specific and concise.
These type of questions are usually considered most difficult – mainly because they are very abstract and as such, there is little advice you can get besides – be yourself. Assessors are looking to see how you think when confronted with puzzling questions and how creative your answers can be to questions like:
The Final Interview at BCG is also your opportunity to find out more about the company and the team you might be working with. However, asking interesting questions in the interview is about so much more than this.
Come equipped with some thought-provoking questions, stand out from the competition and demonstrate your genuine motivation and enthusiasm to work for the company.
Do not be afraid to ask your interviewer about their personal experiences with the company, as well as their career path. They want to see your genuine interest to work for BCG and not as just another ‘job seeker’. Your enthusiasm and interest may offset some of your shortcomings from the interview.
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Answers to questions:
Numerical reasoning test: D
Verbal reasoning test: B
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