Roland Berger MBA level cases – senior consultant – are unusual for the types of things they can test. Many MBA candidates are surprised by the additional skills needed. Here is an example of a typical case:
“A Russian bank wants to enter the Ukraine market. You need to explain to me how you will design, structure and manage the project as well as cost the entire engagement.”
This is an actual case our clients in Toronto, Lagos and Chicago receive. While this may look like a case testing merely softer skills, it is really very creative and elegant in its ability to test both analytical and planning skills with candidates. In fact, it goes one level further than the answer-first approach to see what you would do to test that answer on a project site.
So do not be fooled.
McKinsey et al are completely obsessed with image, confidence, poise and analytical skills in case interviews. They only discuss leadership and management skills in the fit section, but do not test it. That is one area where the principle of demonstrated competency is never applied.
This case fixes that problem. To be able to answer this case, the candidate must be able to have the skills to tackle a complete McKinsey or BCG case, and then go further. A candidate would need to;
- Explain how they will convert the hypotheses to analyses for testing. This specifically means the graphs the candidate expects to draw, with the accompanying x and y axes descriptors – the interviewer could even ask for the storyboard from these graphs and we have seen that in some Roland Berger interviews.
- Next, the candidate must explain the data needed to complete the graph.
- Then the candidate must determine the number of consultants, their seniority and time requirements to capture the data and complete the analyses.
- Finally, the candidate must build a project timeline; lay the analyses in the correct order, since some parts can only be done sequentially, and determine the overall man-hours usage.
- The cost of the project can be easily generated from the man-hours per level and the cost per hour per level against the total project time.
This approach tests to see if a candidate actually can manage a project and really understand the issues of converting analyses into project management steps. It is an excellent way to test how project-ready a candidate is. This case does not have a high pass rate.
This video about Roland Berger cases is only available to our case candidates and can be found in session six of our online case solution video library.
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