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Bain & Company Associate Consultant Interview Questions & Reviews

Updated Apr 18, 2014
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Associate Consultant Interview

Associate Consultant
London, England

I interviewed at Bain & Company in December 2013.

Interview Details Online (CV, cover letter) --online numerical reasoning test -- 1st round -- 2nd round

Interview Question – Online test, conventional numerical reasoning test. Graphs, figures, tables, and calculation. No surprises.

1st round, with two associate consultants

one market sizing with competency questions. Quick calculation
One case, profitability, framework applied. Very straightforward .
They would call you to give you feedback if you are selected.

2nd round, with managers and partners

one written case, 35 minutes self preparation, you need to read 2 pages of instruction, 18pages of information (graph, newspaper articles), afterwards, fill in 4 slides (1 general, 1 action, 1 table for calculation and make one graph, and finally make recommendations). And then 35 minutes with interviewer, go through the case. If I had to do it again, I would work on the calculations first and finish the table and figures.

Two business cases with competency questions. Easy case, no tricky questions.

Generally, don't expect the case to be like as structured as you would see in case books. You don't have to write down any structure, or maybe don't need to write down anything. It is really more about having a business solving conversation. About calculation, be flexible.

The office was very nice and cosy, good central location, a lot of Coffee shops to have lunch. HR were nice. Final round interviewees were invited to a dinner in a pretty good restaurant. Well, I have to say they really make effort during the whole selection process.
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Associate Consultant Interview

Associate Consultant
London, England

I applied through college or university and the process took 4 months - interviewed at Bain & Company in January 2014.

Interview Details Started with an online maths/logical reasoning test. First round was straightfoward - market sizing and a business case. Second round was much tougher - two challenging business cases and the written/presentation case. In the written/presentation case, you are provided with a wad of documents and ~30 min to complete some analysis and slides. All interviewers and recruiting people were extremely friendly - you got the feeling that they really wanted you to be successful.

Interview Question – What other companies have you applied for, what offers do you already have? (asked by all three interviewers in the final round)   Answer Question

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Difficult Interview

Associate Consultant Interview

Associate Consultant
London, England

I applied online and the process took 2 months - interviewed at Bain & Company in January 2014.

Interview Details CV and Cover letter, then online test, 1st round interview, 2nd round interviews.
I think getting through the CV and cover letter stage is the hardest, obviously get yourself to an event will probably up your chances. The online test and 1st round are fine if you are prepared. The 2nd round written case is about time management and presentation skills. The actual cases in the second round are interviewer led, with brainstorming parts featuring quite heavily in mine.

Interview Question – Sales drivers for a high end beauty brand.   Answer Question

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1 person found this helpful

No Offer

Positive Experience

Difficult Interview

Associate Consultant Interview

Associate Consultant
London, England

I applied online and the process took 4+ weeks - interviewed at Bain & Company in November 2013.

Interview Details Overall a great experience despite not making it through first round. Two interviews, first one a market estimation case and then competency/personality questions. Second was with a Manager and was a business case, with maths and data analysis.

Interview Question – Calculate the size of the disposable nappy market in the UK   Answer Question

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Difficult Interview

Associate Consultant Interview

Associate Consultant

Interviewed at Bain & Company

Interview Details First round interview consisted of two cases, which were pretty straightforward. Friendly, supportive interviewers. Second round consisted of a written case, which was very time-sensitive; focus on the top-line answers even if they don't make complete sense rather than trying to drill into the detail. 3 other cases in the 2nd round, which was pretty straightforward.

Interview Question – The Written Case. Look for samples online.   Answer Question

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Accepted Offer

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Difficult Interview

Associate Consultant Interview

Associate Consultant
London, England

I applied online and the process took 2 months - interviewed at Bain & Company in January 2012.

Interview Details CV screening followed by an online test. Then two rounds of interviews which consists of two and three case interviews respectively.

Interview Question – A time where I was a leader and I had to tackle a conflict of interests   Answer Question

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Difficult Interview

Associate Consultant Interview

Associate Consultant
London, England

I applied online and the process took 3 months - interviewed at Bain & Company.

Interview Details Applied through the website, received an invitation to take the maths test and then an offer for first round interview. The first round interview consisted of one market sizing case and one broader case concerning a specific industry. The market sizing question was about a common industry that one would be familiar with. However, once I had come up with my answer I was asked to summarise it and basically give the '30 second CEO chat', which threw me a bit as I'm used to there being several data points that you can use to make an insightful recommendation, rather than just going through exactly the process I used. It's very difficult to make a recommendation when you're simply reiterating, 'And so, the size of market X is Y dollars per year'.

Interview Question – They were fairly straight forward questions, some basic competency questions, and then an exploration of how you would grow revenue for a company.   Answer Question

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No Offer

Neutral Experience

Associate Consultant Interview

Associate Consultant

Interviewed at Bain & Company

Interview Details Application online followed by a first round interview at their offices. Quantitative and case study questions. Results came out about 3 weeks later. Very impersonal and interview feedback takes at least a month to receive with members of the HR team hard to get hold of.

Interview Question – Estimate the UK newspaper market.   Answer Question

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No Offer

Positive Experience

Easy Interview

Associate Consultant Interview

Associate Consultant
London, England

I applied online - interviewed at Bain & Company in December 2012.

Interview Details The whole process was very encouraging and even fun. You arrive and you get escorted to a room with other interviewees and very friendly HR staff who give you a package containing the background of your interviewers and your first interviewer collects you from here. The round consisted of a competency and estimation interview with an Bain AC first and then a case study interview with a more senior Bainee with no waiting around in between. Both lasted 45 minutes.

The first interview was more of a conversation - initially prompting me to talk him through my life (career) and then about activities that the AC had highlighted or found interesting. Questions were - what was your best achievement at X company, and he asked the logistical questions about a society I established and ran - how big was it, was it in a team, were the team members just friends (no), how many events did you have and is it still running. I got the feeling - that answers needed to be results driven. The estimation was on what a music festival goer spends (from start to finish), but was more conceptual than driving the estimation to the end and there were some case study type questions intergrated into the estimation - like how would you increase the revenue.

The second interview was straight into the case - where I had to think of the costs involved for a particular manufacturing company A who was company B's supplier. Company B considered ordering a less processed product from Company A and would therefore do the rest of the processing in house leaving Company A with less revenue per order. I had to advise Company A on what to say to Company B to convince them to just order the finished product.

Interview Question – What was your biggest achievement at company X   Answer Question

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Difficult Interview

Associate Consultant Interview

Associate Consultant
London, England

I applied through an employee referral and the process took 7+ weeks - interviewed at Bain & Company in May 2012.

Interview Details First-round interview four weeks after applying online. First interview with an Associate Consultant and Senior Associate Consultant. CV discussion - the questions included why consulting, why Bain, how would I get data from a client or a client's client. Then a market sizing case. Interviewers friendly and asking questions to help you showcase your experience and capabilities. Second interview with a consultant - case study. Essentially candidate led, with interviewer having some questions that he wanted to address. No slides for that particular case. Also the second interviewer was friendly, and created quite a relaxed atmosphere. Overall positive experience.

Interview Question – No unexpected questions in this particular interview, both market sizing cases and business problem cases are standard.   Answer Question

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