The salaries of full-time employees and interns who come directly from an education program are quite high. Before making a final decision, it is important to consider how your salary will grow over time. Our interview preparation clients often receive slightly higher job offers in technology than in Management Consulting, but the wage growth in consulting is higher than many other positions in the industry. This means that after a few years, the net revenue from consulting may be higher than other industries, despite the initially lower base salary.
Generally, consultant salaries are very competitive compared to other sectors, with the exception of finance, where salaries are higher but work-life balance is often worse. Technology companies also compete with consulting firms for talent, offering higher base salaries but with more isolated functions and slower upward trajectories. Consulting services can still play a key role for companies, especially during times of inflation and recession. Although the consulting industry has embraced digitalization, procurement is still a labor-intensive activity that requires a lot of data and paperwork to be managed.
At McKinsey, Bain and BCG, management consultant salaries are relatively stable in all offices in a country. This has led to record revenues for many consulting firms and a continuous wave of M&A activity, resulting in double-digit growth in the industry. In general, consultant salaries are competitive within their country and often offer salaries 20% higher than the average of other professional services firms. Most firms have junior associates who then move up to senior associate or manager positions.
Interns in consulting are less likely to receive bonuses, although some firms offer relocation or signature bonuses. Many small and medium-sized consulting firms offer competitive compensation and often a better work-life balance. Many consulting firms have a “positive or negative” promotion structure, and many consultants choose to leave. While big technologies continue to compete with consulting to attract the best talent, consulting continues to offer faster promotion cycles, greater industry exposure and a better path to business leadership.
In addition, consultants can also receive bonuses for completing projects on time or achieving certain goals. This bonus is generally calculated as a percentage of the consultant's base salary and is paid based on the consultant's performance during the review period. Therefore, bringing in management to work with consultants is the first step in ensuring the success of your consulting project. At the time of performance evaluation, many consultants receive a performance bonus in addition to their regular salary.