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Accenture Jobs – Detailed Descriptions of All Positions in Management Consulting

To understand the career at Accenture you should know what tasks you would perform in the different jobs.

You can expect the following in the different career positions in management consulting.

Analyst

As an Accenture analyst you will spend your time mainly on gathering information. This can be for example:

  • data on different business processes,
  • statistics on employees per department,
  • industry statistics,
  • market shares, or
  • historic costs of your client.
The data is used by the project team in the analyses.

You will mainly find data through Google, Accenture’s intranet, the client’s intranet, or by asking the client for their internal documents. On rare occasions you get to interview a manager within the client organization or an industry expert.

In addition to finding information (which is very time consuming) you also get to process the data. This means entering the data into Excel and calculating averages, etc. This is known as “number crunching” in the consulting industry.

As an analyst, expect 60% of your time to be spent on information search and 40% on number crunching/data processing (this can vary greatly).

When an Accenture employee is not staffed on a project, he is said to be “on the bench”. In some countries you get fired for being too long on the bench.

Quick Facts: The Analyst Position
Pros:
  • As a recent graduate it’s very exciting to have a job and go on business trips
  • Earning a Salary for the first time
  • The business jargon and “we are best”-attitude at Accenture can be very impressive and even intoxicating
Cons:
  • Can be very boring
  • Your relationship, friendships, and hobbies will suffer as you are almost never home
Skills you need:
  • Working in Microsoft Excel
  • Information search
Key Success Factors:
  • Be obedient and butter up the people higher-up in the hierarchy
  • Work long hours without getting bored or burning out
  • Show (or fake) long-term interest in Accenture

Analyst is the entry level to an Accenture career for a student and you would have this position for about three years. Roughly 40% of the employees are analysts, and another 30% are consultants.

More about the analyst position:

Consultant

As a consultant you often do the same job as an analyst, but with a bit more responsibility.

You also get to plan your work slightly more and often you spend some of your time on the project preparing Power Point slides (up to 1/3 of your time). This involves bringing tables from Excel into Power Point and making graphical representations of the conclusions.

Quick Facts: The Consultant Position
Pros:
  • If you like drawing and designing, you can get to do this in Power Point
Cons:
  • Most of the work is still analysis, which get old quickly
  • Your consultant colleagues have by now learned to back stab to get a promotion
Skills you need:
  • Analysis with a high-level perspective (e.g. How does my analysis fit into the project? How do I make my conclusions into a good flowing Power Point deck)
  • Working fast
Key Success Factors:
  • Showing initiatives
  • Show that you are organized and ready to take on project management
  • Show how much you “love” Accenture
  • You need to build up your favoritism-capital with people higher up

The consultant position is minimum 3 years within Accenture. In Accenture terms, you need 36 months-at-level when the promotion round comes up to be eligible.

More about the consultant position:

Manager

As a manager you have much more responsibility than consultants and analysts. You spend your day doing project management, which means you have to make sure things get done.

You make sure the project team work fast enough, that the client gets the time reports every two weeks, and handle basically everything the client and the team needs.

You need to be a doer, rather than a thinker. You need to be efficient and disciplined.

Typical tasks are:

  • Divide the different analyses and information gathering to the analysts and consultants on the team
  • Manage the progress of the project
  • Review Power Point Slides when a consultant has finished something
  • Put pressure on the project members to work hard and put in over time (increases the income of the project)
  • Meet with the client – normally to discuss why the project is late and who in the client organization Accenture can interview
  • Do performance reviews with HR and the project members

Managers are evaluated based on the profit margins of their projects. You might think there’s little they can do regarding margins, since both salaries and the daily rate to the client are fixed in contracts.

There are however a few things Accenture managers do to improve their margins:

  • Agree with the team members that they don’t get overtime pay (i.e. that they don’t report the overtime).
  • Bill the clients the overtime, by having the team report the time unofficially to the manager. Many Accenture managers add a few hours – which is fraud – since it is difficult for clients to check.

In addition, to increase overall project revenues managers can:

  • Let the project drag out.
  • Include additional goals in the project that the client might find “interesting”.

Depending on your country, it is likely that managers don’t get overtime pay, like analysts and consultants officially do.

MBA graduates are sometimes taken in on the Manager level. With the competence you gain from an MBA program, Senior Manager would be a more realistic position. Accenture is known for recruiting experienced hires at too low levels, so beware.

Quick Facts: The Manager Position
Pros:
  • More freedom to influence project environment and atmosphere
  • More client contact
Cons:
  • More pressure from above
  • Some people say this is the level when you corrupt your soul, as you now “have to” pressure and abuse your subordinates
  • Bureaucracy and paperwork increase
Skills you need:
  • Time management
  • Ability to set and impose deadlines
  • Discipline and efficinecy
Key Success Factors:
  • Favoritism is still #1 for promotions, but you need to be selective, only Managing Directors count from now on. The higher up, the better.
  • Show profits and margins on your project
  • Show you can deal with clients

You will hold this job for about 2-3 years. About 20% of the management consulting people are managers, and 10% have higher positions.

More about the Manager position:

Senior Manager

The main responsibilities of an Accenture Senior Manager is to sell projects.

This means finding opportunities (talking to project teams to see what current clients need) and preparing project proposals. Most of the thinking and drawing conclusions in an Accenture project is done when preparing the proposal. You discuss hypotheses with the Managing Director in charge and what the client needs. Often the project work itself is then to find the data for the hypotheses and verify them. Thus, all the fun work is done in the proposal phase.

You will also handle client relationships during projects, and visit and support the teams of projects you sold.

Quick Facts: The Senior Manager Position
Pros:
  • This is strangely the level where you get to do some actual thinking, while writing proposals
Cons:
  • Even more pressure and stress (it always gets worse in Accenture)
  • Competition is fierce for the Managing Director promotions, and all your colleagues know how to play the game very well
Skills you need:
  • Proposal writing
  • Networking
  • Creating client relations
Key Success Factors:
  • The network you have built up over the last 8-9 years

If successful, you hold this position for 2-3 years. At this level in Accenture it gets very difficult to get promoted to Managing Director and competition is fierce. Much of the promotion decision comes down to how many Managing Directors are supporting you.

More about the Senior Manager position:

Managing Director

Just as Senior Managers, the Managing Directors visit project teams for so called “Executive Reviews” which are mayor project milestones and deadlines. Managing Directors also help develop hypothesis and conclusions.

As a Managing Director you have to “own” the client relationship. This means you should be the preferred contact for mayor decision makers at the client organization.

Most of your day will be spent on internal Accenture tasks, though. Tasks that are important to the Managing Directors (lower levels):

  • Recruiting for your practice (i.e. doing the last interviews),
  • Organizing,
  • Firing employees,
  • Career counseling (=establishing yearly goals for each subordinate),
  • Setting up events, and
  • Delegating white paper elaborations
You see, Managing Director is not the highest position in Accenture.

The Managing Director position has about 16 sub-levels, starting at 4.4 and going all the way to 1.1. As you are promoted through your career, your responsibilities (and work pressure) increase. Read more on the Managing Director structure in our glossary.

You might start with being responsible for a service line (functional specialty) such as Strategy or Finance & Performance Management, and in the next level you get a market specialty (operating group) such as Automotive or Banking.

If you reach very high you get responsibility for a whole country. This increase in responsibility never ends, as your next step might be to manage an operating group for a larger geographic region (e.g. Insurance industry clients in Eastern Europe).

The backside of the coin is that many Accenture Managing Directors are often on the verge of burning out, due to the aforementioned increase in pressure, and often end up seeing the company doctor regularly.

Quick Facts: The Managing Director Position
Pros:
  • Everyone below look up to you, fear you, and brown nose you
Cons:
  • Pressure is enormous
Skills you need:
  • Organization
  • Execution
  • Making tough calls, such as firing people
Key Success Factors:
  • Low demands from family and outside life
  • Personal energy

Why don’t they quit? Accenture gives them bonuses consisting of stocks, for example $120.000 worth of ACN shares if they stay for two more years. Once they get that bonus, they get offered a larger amount of stock to stay another four years, and so on. This, combined with The Accenture Kiss of Death, makes it difficult to leave.

More about the Managing Director position:


Promotions are always made in September (and to a minor degree March) for each year and you need to have the minimum “months at level” to be considered, no exceptions.

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  1. Hi,

    I have got two offers here in Bangalore, India – one with “CSG International” and another with “Accenture”. Fixed CTC (~gross salary and incentives) in CSG is 1 Lakh more than offered in Accenture. I basically worked in Telecom based company for 5.1 years and CSG International is also a telecom product based company but no onsite opportunities…

    My concern is in Accenture there are good opportunities in telecom projects and I can also get onsites… in CSG there are no onsites… also Accenture has a very good brand name…

    Please let me know which is a better offer… waiting for your reply also in Accenture HR did not tell anything about the project I will be working upon…

    Cheers,

    Desai

    • Hi Desai.

      I assume you by “onsite” you mean opportunities to work abroad, for example US or Europe.

      Onsite opportunities in Accenture: I think it is extremely unlikely you get to go abroad to work for Accenture (especially from India). Why would they send you to work in another country, when it is so much easier to put a local person there? I would say, if you work your b*tt off (80+ hours per week) and brown-nose your superiors, then maybe you have a 5% chance to go abroad after 2-3 years.

      Telecom projects in Accenture: Yes, they have telecom projects. The thing you should realize is that you don’t get to chose your project. You can end up on very boring stuff, that does not develop you, and that is not even in your area of expertise (i.e. telecom). Accenture can’t afford to hold their “human resources” to wait for project that they like. Accenture wants to get high utility rates of their “resources”.

      This is why HR is not telling you what project you would be staffed on. You get the first one that comes, whether it is interesting or not. You can try to pressure them to know what project you’ll be staffed on, I’d be interested to hear back how they react.

      Accenture’s brand name: Well… the brand is being more and more diluted. They now have about 300.000 employees. It is not so special to work there, and not that hard to get an offer (no offense to you, you might be great, talented professional for all I know).

      I suggest you read a bit on our site, to get to know the aspects about Accenture that HR will not tell you. Check out: Accenture’s Core values, the Assventure article, to name a few.

      Also check out career forums and see what people say, most employees are very disappointed with Accenture. But beware that Accenture manipulates employee reviews on certain sites.

      The short answer: Go somewhere else than Accenture. It is not a good company, you would most likely be abused there.

      Good luck with your career!

      • Hi,
        Thank you very much for your reply.. Yes, by onsite I mean working abroad like US, Europe etc., for the short term. As you said, I agree that the interview process was not that great..

        Thank you very much for your reply. I have taken up another offer with a product based company (CSG International) where the pay is higher also I can maintain my telecom domain itself and lot of other advantages..

        Cheers,

        Desai

  2. Run….the leadership is terrible, development is a joke compared to anywhere else.

    You join the hamster wheel where they do not care about their people and the Accenture Leadership will dismiss resources in a blink if they think they can line their pockets faster with anyone else.

    It’s extremely short term focused mindset, very poor ethics as they lie to their clients about skills, they over-commit, over bill and especially take advantage of young company execs in the software industry who don’t know any better.

    Look deep into their history with Enron – they are still the same and spend a massive amount of money on marketing to try and cover up their true colors.

    Stay away, this is no life and there are far better ways to invest in your time and career.

  3. Laughable analysis of the Accenture experience and clearly out of touch with the reality of Anderson Consulting and now Accenture for the past 14 years.

  4. Best company for getting Insane in the Brain, I worked as a specialist so I was able to see some projects.

    Above a certain career level they used manipulation tactics to turn people into their way of thinking. People are just FTEs, if you put some extra love in something you probably get critical comments.

    Management of people:
    You’ll never be able to see the real path from a non-experienced leader who will be on a higher level because he is on project since joining ACN. He’ll just pushing you smoke in your thoughts and needs to produce time lags on the client side to generate money (More time at the client side mo money(:) .. pretending there is complexity or a wrong estimation processes..

    I was really into Project Management and realized that no Project Plan was really used even if it was some kind of User story board.

    Something is more than wrong when you are 12 hours in a low performance office space with 100 people who all have the same opinion… & believe their actual task is connected to the deadline.

    I couldn’t stand it because there was no respect for the individual.

  5. At Accenture Australia, technology consulting roles require no skills other than that you completed a degree, whether it was in maths, business or whatever. If you are young and attractive you’ll never want for technology roles, even if you didn’t study technology.

    I’ve heard an Oracle employee say that before Accenture’s staff joined Accenture they were chefs. :)

    It’s very helpful to have a skill set that includes being charming, duplicitous, confident and good looking.

  6. This is very interesting (and enlightening?)! They seem to be good at making employees loyal though. Many of my friends refuse to leave Accenture or would still want to go back. I was a bit surprised though that they called me up for an analyst position even though I have 8+ years of work experience!

  7. This is an outstanding site. I really appreciate what is being exposed. Thank you.