The business and management consulting industry is estimated to grow with the rapid digitalisation and emerging market trends creating a myriad of career opportunities.

Every year, over a thousand MBA graduates enter into the diverse sectors of business consulting, including finance, management, marketing, and IT. Out of all, management consulting is a popular choice amongst the students wherein they get valuable business exposure and the opportunity to hone analytical skills.

  • Management consulting as a career choice: Where B-schools keep on mushrooming all over India, more and more management consulting organisations are occupying their place in the market offering an array of consulting services to the international and domestic businesses.

Today, consulting is an attractive career choice as it comes with a promising salary package and provides an individual with adequate scope for personal development. The role of a management consultant is an integral denominator for the rapid growth and success of an organisation.

In both private and public sectors, the demand for expert assistance in streamlining business, reducing costs, in a dynamic market is increasing. The problem-solving abilities, high-level aptitude, and great business management acumen are the topmost requirements to become a competent management consultant.

  • Industry dynamics: The consulting firms rely on manual labour, the consultants for research, analysis, strategy-making, and execution, albeit they have made technology as the core part of their business. The giants in the consulting market like KPMG, PwC, Deloitte, and Accenture keep on recruiting world-class management consultants well-versed with digital technology to deliver their clients a delightful customer experience.

Moreover, the need for relevant industry insights and the dynamic trends compels the businesses to build in-house management consulting teams for strategic advice on projects and solutions further business expansion and growth.

At the early stages of the career, the starting salary of the management consultants ranges between 2.5-3 lakhs. However, with the maturity of the career, one can easily get hands on an annual package of up to Rs 50 lakhs.

  • Qualifications required: For grabbing the position of a management consultant in a reputed firm, the minimum requirement is a graduation degree and Masters of Business Administration (MBA) degree from a recognised private or Government University. Private autonomous colleges like Indian Institutes of Management, Christ College, Xavier School of Management, and Symbiosis Pune are a popular choice.

The government universities including Delhi University, Rajasthan University, Pune University, and Kolkata University offer two year MBA degree program. A good score in Common Admission Test (CAT) lands the candidates to management schools like IIM where DU and RU conduct their entrance exams.

Moreover, the certification in management consultants offered by various reputed institutes further improves the candidate’s CVs. The consultancy firms prefer the candidates with at least one year of work experience in the industry; however, freshers are also welcome as they can easily be trained as per the company’s requirements.

  • Skills required: Apart from the educational qualifications, the students must possess organisational and management skills to double up the chances of getting hired by a topnotch company. A good understanding of the business ecosystem, market trends, good interpersonal and communication skills, knowledge of two or more language, sharp analytical capabilities, and the ability to work under tight deadlines and work pressure are the aspects that the students should focus on.

A management consultant should be able to remain self-motivated and disciplined to handle the heavy workload on a routine basis. She/he must know the art of prioritising multiple tasks to accomplish each of them and also improving the quality of every deliverable.

The companies are eager to work with consultants who are productive, efficient, and competent in their work with little supervision.

Moreover, technologies like AI, Machine Learning, Blockchain, and Pattern Analysis are widely being used in the consultancy industry bringing innovation to their services and agility into their organisations.

So, the management consultants need to be adaptable to the changing work culture and should be able to provide quick and profitable consulting solutions to the clients.

The writer is founder and managing director, SL Consultants.