Consulting is one of the most competitive career paths for graduates today. The three most prestigious management consulting firms are known as the Big Three, and although their workforces are tiny compared with the likes of PwC and KPMG, they work with some of the world's most influential organisations, businesses and governments.
Here’s what you need to know about them and the opportunities they offer bright graduates.
Bain & Company
The youngest of the three, Bain & Company was established by ten Boston Consulting Group employees in 1973. They managed to win plenty of new business with impressive quantitative performance results and maintain a rigorous, results-focused approach today.
They also have a close relationship with Bain Capital, an investment firm which specialises in private equity.
Alumni include Mitt Romney, former US presidential candidate and Meg Whitman, CEO of Hewlett-Packard. Find out more about Bain & Company's opportunities on their employer profile.
Boston Consulting Group
Boston Consulting Group has a reputation of being highly academically-focused, hiring many of its graduates from prestigious universities.
With a focus on complex analytical methods, research and new concepts, BCG is an intellectually-demanding environment and offers generous benefits and places a great emphasis on work-life balance.
They turned over $5 billion in 2015 and alumni include Indra Nooyi, CEO of PepsiCo and Bob Kagle, Director of eBay. Find out more about their graduate opportunities on their employer profile.
McKinsey & Company
The oldest and biggest of the three. McKinsey & Company was founded in 1926 and has over 106 offices in 60 countries. They have stayed on top by constantly innovating and embracing new technology, as well as maintaining a ruthless recruitment process. According to the FT, in 2013 the firm received 225,000 employment applications - the portion of these which even made it through the first stage of the process is minute.
McKinsey & Company prides itself on the diversity of its people, and offers paid summer internships for talented second-year students looking to get into the industry.
They turned over $8.4 billion last year and are 39th on Forbes's list of the largest private firms in America. Their illustrious alumni network is also very handy for ex-Mckinseyites looking for new opportunities.
There is much more to the industry than the Big Three though. Discover other top firms offering graduate roles in management consulting just here.