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Mission: We believe in a better way of doing business consultancy; working closely with our clients to ensure we understand their business as well as we do our own, leaving them with the knowledge that enables rapid and sustainable change.
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I have been working at Clarasys full-time (More than 3 years)
No. 1 benefit at Clarasys is opportunity. I'm confident I have developed far faster here than I would have at other consultancies. When I speak to my friends at the big 4 for example, they are typically in shock with the level of work i'm doing. Clarasys isn't afraid to put people in roles that will stretch them. However Clarasys will also not let you drown, there is serious consideration put into the support network. As a standard consultants have weekly catch-ups with both their engagement lead and coach.
Clarasys remains a meritocratic organisation. I started as a graduate here 3 years ago and i'm now a Senior Consultant. This is not to say it's easy to progress. What it does say is that the process is transparent (guided by a competency framework) and you have plenty of opportunity to keep going for promotion/pay rises (you get an opportunity every quarter). I've had my frustrations with the process but generally looking back, I can see the rationale for when I haven't got what I wanted in the past.
Yes we're consultants which means we're not always doing our ideal work. However Clarasys genuinely cares about your progression and well-being. There have been times in the past where i've been unhappy with my current project/role and they have done everything to help correct that - whether it's rolling me off, helping me expand my role or looking for other areas I could develop internally.
The whole company listens to feedback. You'll see here a few cons around the amount of holiday and the office. In the past few months we have move to a state-of the-art office and the company have given an extra 3 days holiday as standard (now 25).
Really strong management team, every hire seems to be very much thought out because they just keep smashing it. It's clear the Head of Finance truly understands the business and the way he articulates concepts really engages people with the financial health of the business.
The company has clear direction. Every Clarastician knows the vision , specialties and mission statement of Clarasys.
I don't need to go into detail on the culture here as there's plenty of info available. What I will say is people really do make an effort to be in the office. When i am on quite an intense project as I am now, I do miss my colleagues. Clarasys genuinely hires really intelligent and people who are great to be around. Friday beers are monthly socials are a great way to re-engage when it feels like I am going native.
Org structure is really flat, feels very self-organisey. I suspect this is because we don't have line managers. We have coaches who are their to support your well-being and personal development, not to scold you anyway.
As is the nature of consulting, some projects will be super interesting and others not so much. Generally the standard of projects that Clarasys chooses to do is quite high. It's important this is kept up.
We're growing quickly. Every year the head count increase and it gets harder to know everyone well. This presents it challenges, however Clarasys puts a lot of effort in maintaining it remains a great place to work, while embracing the fact that the culture will change.
Advice to Management
Keep on listening to feedback. Keep on asking people what sort of work they want to do. For me anyway, the single most important factor in me staying in Clarasys is whether I'm doing work that both motivates (I find it interesting) and challenges me.
I applied online. The process took 2+ months. I interviewed at Clarasys (London, England) in October 2019.
Had an initial phone screen with the CEO to run through my CV and answer some basic competency questions. Shortly thereafter, I was invited to meet up with one of the consultants in the team for a drink outside of the workplace and was given the chance to ask questions informally and find out what working at the firm is really like; this was good. I then had a face to face with one of the Directors and a Manager. It started by me being presented with a case study to work through and prepare answers - which is fine and very normal as you would expect in any other case study. However, once they came into the room, rather than being expected to enter into a dialogue and talk through my approach and responses to the case study, they both began to treat this more as a role-play exercise where I'm now suddenly meant to pretend i'm in a live situation in my capacity as Consultant, while they play the role of the client. It was weird because when they played the role of the Client, they were just throwing tantrums and I'm meant to suddenly start managing their tantrums. I was confused by this point: is this a case-study or a role-play? If it's a case study, they should stick to the traditional format of letting the candidate enter into a dialogue to talk through their approach and responses. If it's a role-play, then make it clear. At this point, I was incredibly alienated and felt it was something out of kindergarden. Personally, coming from a Big 4 firm with 5 years experience, the case study was pretty straight forward, but they didn't focus on just allowing me to speak and convey my response to the case study accordingly - much like you would expect in any other case study. And for someone being interviewed for a senior-post, they could at least show me the respect I deserve and not introduce role-plays for the level I'm coming in at. I expect this at the graduate level, not the experienced hire level. I also found that the interviewers themselves are not as intelligent as I thought they would be and there were obvious gaps in their knowledge base, and this became apparent when I asked them probing questions that were relevant, appropriate and fair during this role-play. They struggled to answer them - which was bizarre as I would had expected them to have answers at their level of seniority. All this confirmed exactly why it was not the firm for me, so I regrettably declined their offer. The salary unfortunately wasn't great either.
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