No Guaranteed Offers With MBB Internship

The leading giants of the consulting industry, McKinsey, Bain, and BCG (aka MBB), have made a subtle, but significant shift in their hiring policy.

Beginning in 2019, the top 3 consulting firms were known for guaranteeing students a full-time position alongside their summer internship offer. This was part of the lure of MBB for top talent, as it provided early assurance to young undergraduates for a coveted role at an MBB consulting firm upon graduation.

However, Management Consulted has learned that MBB no longer guarantees permanent roles in a bundle offer with summer internships. Now, students who receive offers for MBB summer internships will be considered on a case-by-case basis for a return offer dependent on performance and hiring needs.

Conversion rates from MBB internships to full-time offers remain encouragingly high (>95%). In short, you have to do something really stupid or just not care to not convert your internship to a full time offer. However, a 95% hit rate is not the same as guaranteed. This policy change leaves no doubt that the war for talent is abating.

No Guaranteed Offers With MBB Internship

Why No Guaranteed Offers?

Current economic headwinds have hit certain parts of the consulting industry harder than others. For many firms, the supply and demand equation is off-kilter – too much supply, not enough demand.

Consultant utilization rates are down as rising interest rates dampen demand for consulting services (e.g., witness the slowdown in M&A activity, a major driver of due diligence work for consulting firms).

A major second order effect of this has been the delayed start dates facing new hires across the industry. Softening demand and underutilized consultants equal less need for incoming analysts and associates.

Thus, the discontinuation of guaranteed full-time roles following MBB summer internships will provide MBB consulting firms with additional flexibility when it comes to hiring in case economic conditions remain in a state of uncertainty.

Additionally, MBB firms will now have the ability to be more selective as to who they hire. Hiring will be purely performance-based, as opposed to the grab-bag for talent that has been seen in the last few recruiting cycles.

The firms now have plenty of resumes to sift through and do not need to rely on their internship classes to fill full-time spots.

What Should Candidates Do To Land A Consulting Role?

With the war for talent abating, you may be wondering what that means for you if you are seeking a consulting position.

While the guaranteed offers were a nice safety net for those who landed internships at the top 3, the change in policy for how MBB secures top talent is not necessarily a cause for concern.

However, being aware of this change can help candidates focus their efforts when it comes to recruitment. It will require summer interns to be on their top game even more so and to double down on internal networking and adding value in order to increase their chances of landing a full-time position.


If you are looking to position yourself for an internship or full-time offer, Management Consulted has resources that can help you improve your networking strategy, case interview skills, and more!


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Filed Under: Bain, BCG, Consulting Firms, Consulting News, McKinsey Consulting