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Announcing The 2016 Best Consulting Firms to Work For

best consulting firms

You Voted, We Listened, and The Results Are In.

Ivy Exec recently surveyed 5,000 community members to find out which are the best consulting firms to work for in 2016. Following our 2015 round up, this year we introduced more firms, large and boutique, into the rankings.

Survey respondents ranked their current or former employers based on categories including leadership, culture, quality of work, compensation, and prestige, to produce a data-driven view of each firm.

Here are some of our major findings from the results:

Boutiques Dominate Quality of Work and Culture

Perhaps it is no surprise that – if you are looking for enriching work and exciting culture – boutique firms are the place to be. Vynamic, who tops Ivy Exec’s rankings overall this year (up from #2 in 2015) continues to show that to build a strong company, happy employees are key. Not only do they focus their work on healthcare, but they invest in their employee’s health, as well. Vynamic’s office boasts treadmills, standing desks, yoga sessions, and enough healthy snacks to put your local natural-food retailer to shame. You’ll be hard pressed to find that in some of the large, corporate firms.

When it comes to getting quality work – you can always expect the large consulting firms to have equally large clients. But that doesn’t mean you’ll always get to work on those engagements. Consultants at boutiques are more likely to gain exposure to some of the great work opportunities, “even a lowly consultant can directly impact the direction of the firm” said one survey respondent about Everest Group. Another said, “Several of the partners and staff come from top tier consulting firms (BCG, McKinsey, Booz, etc.) as do some of the other members of the consulting staff. Therefore the quality of the work is high and variety is stimulating.”

Big 4 Can’t Crack the Top 10

With one exception. Across quality of work, culture, money, and leadership, none of the big 4 could break the top 10 for large firms. In the category of prestige, however, PwC made a move from #13 in 2015 to #10 in 2016.

And in overall rankings, firms struggled to hold on to their spots. Accenture was pushed out to #15, PwC held on to last year’s overall spot at #16, KPMG managed to overtake FTI Consulting (by a narrow margin) to move up to #17, and EY dropped back to #23.

It was in the category of leadership that pushed most of the firms further down the rankings. With the exception of Deloitte,  the other Big 4 firms –KPMG, EY, and PwC– lost crucial points in leadership, which saw them lose their spots to the likes of The Advisory Board, Bain, and McKinsey, and BCG amongst others in the top 10 for leadership.

But BCG Does it Again

And speaking of Boston Consulting Group – the firm retains its title from 2015 as best large consulting company to work for. For those who recall our 2015 rankings, it achieved this by bossing the rankings for best Culture, Prestige, and Leadership. The same holds true in 2016. And the quality of leadership isn’t coming from the mouths of the leaders themselves. “Our leadership is thoughtful and brilliant. Some of the smartest folks I’ve met in my life,” said a Manager at the firm. And “Strategic leadership with an accessible personality,” said an Associate.

History tends to repeat itself, and BCG’s main competition, Bain & Company, held onto #2 in rankings.

To see the rankings, and to get more data about each company’s work, culture, leadership, and compensation, visit here.

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