They are not necessarily the biggest firms, but the firms. The top 3 consulting firms versus the big 4 make for an interesting comparison. The three main management consulting firms are McKinsey, Bain, and BCG, known as MBB firms. They are not necessarily the biggest firms, but they are the most prestigious firms that can charge high fees to their clients.
The big 4 refer to the top 4 accounting firms. These firms may have strategy branches that compete with MBB firms, but most of their business is related to accounting. Let's make a small comparison between the top 3 and the big 4 consulting firms and see what some of the differences are. If you're looking at what firms you can apply to, this should give you some interesting facts to consider.
The four big consulting firms that represent nearly 40% of the industry are PwC, Deloitte, EY and KPMG. They are followed by McKinsey & Company and BCG, American strategy giants. In some countries, Big 4 Consulting offers some of the best, if not the best consulting opportunities. Because of this big cultural difference, it's more common to move from the big four companies to another consulting firm than between other consulting firms; many people realize that it's not for them.
There are several similarities between the work that consultants do on the Big Four strategy teams and the work that management consultants do at McKinsey, BCG, and Bain. Consultants in some offices may work fewer hours than MBB consultants and therefore enjoy a better work-life balance. MBB's big three companies refer to the largest strategic consulting firms by revenue: McKinsey, The Boston Consulting Group, and Bain & Company. Deloitte has a tax consulting division, for example, which is really nothing more than a tax advisory service for large companies.
Consulting firms continue to hire more than 30% of MBA graduates on a consistent basis at several of the top M7 business schools and other major business schools. But how do the employees of these major consulting firms rank their companies? That's exactly the question Vault's annual ranking of the best consulting firms to work for seeks to answer. In the U.S. In the US, Deloitte is gaining ground in the consulting field, and sometimes even competes with McKinsey (26%), Bain (26%) and BCG.
These firms are collectively known as “MBB” and “the top three” management consulting firms (not “the big three consulting firms”, a very common misconception). Now that you know the top 50 consulting firms, let's look at the various services offered by consulting firms and their ranking. In addition, consulting firms continue to hire more than 30% of MBA graduates on a consistent basis at several of the top M7 business schools and other major business schools. In general, very few consultants would place a job offer from one of the big four companies above another of the ten best strategy consultants.
Because they do similar work and have a similar set of skills, consultants from both groups of companies can take advantage of a number of consulting exit opportunities.