If you are interested in a consulting career at Accenture, you need to understand the firm before you apply and interview.
More importantly, if you're a talented professional or graduating student you need to understand whether Accenture is the best choice for you over other career options.
This overview and our in-depth articles provide specific information that you will not easily find elsewhere.
Careers in Management Consulting
The career path in Accenture starts at the Analyst position for university graduates. There's an unwritten rule in Accenture that everyone should work hard to get promoted and be really focused on promotion.
The career levels in management consulting are:
Tasks vary according to your position. Analysts mainly search for data, do data-entry and calculations in MS Excel. Consultants perform the same duties but also summarize the results in Power Point slides.
Interviewing for Accenture varies by office and practice, but normally starts with an interview with the HR department or perhaps a phone interview. Then you would meet a manager and perhaps do a case and discuss your strengths and situations where you have used them (behavioral interview).
While Accenture joiners will be placed in a specific practice, most people are expected to be generalists, as it would be tremendously inefficient to match people to projects otherwise. So even if you get a job in your favorite area, you are not guaranteed to get experience doing certain types of projects.
In management consulting Accenture divides its services into Strategy, Digital and Operations. Specific services include:
- Operating Model Strategy,
- Sales and Customer Service (CRM),
- Finance & Accounting,
- Supply Chain,
- Talent and HR,
- Risk Management,
The firm is known for doing more operational work than strategy, and at its heart the services are about "getting things done" according to its former Group CEO.
Careers in IT Consulting
People in the Technology division of Accenture are usually a bit less generalists than people in management consulting.
Service lines you can get hired into include:
- Smart Grid,
- Application Outsourcing,
- Data Center Transformation,
- Systems Integration Consulting,
- Testing Services,
- Accenture Interactive,
- IT Strategy,
- just to name a few.
Many Accenture employees are first recruited to the firm, and then assigned a specialty after completing training.
For both IT and Management consulting: rather than getting hired into a functional specialty, you can also be assigned to an industry group, such as Banking, Electronics and High Tech, Media, Public Services and Government, etc.
Careers in Business Process Outsourcing (BPO)
These careers are for candidates without a college or university degree and include call centers and customer service, accounting, and other back office professions.
The culture at Accenture is known for being tough. Don't expect to be mentored and given opportunities to show what you can do.
Long hours, weekend work and sharp elbows are expected from you. And stress.
The organization is highly hierarchical. To illustrate how this affect you: in a phone conference you present yourself with your name and level, and in the phone call you will be treated according to your level. So the Senior Managers and Executives get to give their opinion while analysts are not really asked for their take on the issue at hand even if they are the experts.
People who do well at Accenture are often so called "drivers" who don't ask questions and are focused on the task rather than on coaching people below them in the hierarchy, see the social styles framework used by Accenture. However, people above you in the hierarchy are very important, due to the favoritism culture at Accenture. See the article series on the core values for more on this.
Salaries at Accenture are lower than at most of its competitors. Benefits and bonuses vary greatly, depending on position, country, and your popularity.
For more about how it is to work at Accenture: