Generalist Business Analyst Role Description
When you join McKinsey as a Generalist Business Analyst, you are joining a firm that will challenge you and invest heavily in your professional development. You will build leadership skills beyond what you thought possible and gain access to the most extraordinary leadership network in the world. In the Generalist BA role, you will have the opportunity to help the best organizations in the world solve some of their most difficult problems. Throughout your tenure you will gain broad exposure to a variety of different industries and functional areas, which could include, but are not limited to: pharmaceuticals, retail, and telecommunications on issues such as operations, organization, strategy, and technology.
The Generalist BA at McKinsey is a full member of the client engagement team. You will work on the client site with your McKinsey colleagues and with the client team “owning” your piece of the project. Some examples of the specific work a McKinsey BA might do include: interviewing clients, leading client teams, building financial models, creating and delivering presentations, and working with McKinsey subject experts to develop perspectives and insights for the client.
Typically, our engagements usually last 6 to 12 weeks. As a BA, you will be assigned to one engagement at a time.
The Generalist BA position is offered in all locations:
Ideal candidates for the Generalist BA position:
• Are about to complete, or have just completed, an undergraduate or master’s degree or have 1 to 3 years of work experience after completing your undergraduate degree.
• Have a strong commitment to excellence and personal and professional growth.
• Have demonstrated outstanding academic achievement and an aptitude for analytics.
• Have a strong record of leadership in a work setting and/or extracurricular activities.
• Enjoy working on teams.
• Find problem solving exhilarating.
• Are resourceful, responsible, patient, tenacious, informed, independent, confident, and full of energy.
Learning and Development
As a business analyst, your experience on engagement teams and the coaching you will receive on them will be the most valuable means for you to develop your business problem solving skills. In addition, we offer a number of training programs. Some of these are designed to build your general consulting skills, others will develop you in specific areas where you need additional coaching, and still others will lay a foundation of knowledge in specific industries or functional areas.
Prior to joining the firm, McKinsey will help you prepare for a successful start by providing you with an online course in basic functional skills. This program—called Business Bridge Online—covers finance, accounting, marketing/strategy, and economics.
Like all entering consultants, BAs go through a one-week training program upon joining the firm, which is designed to equip you with the basic consulting skills you will need on your first engagement team. Following that, you will attend Business Analyst Training, which is a one-week course in advanced problem solving and interpersonal and communications skills, usually attended within 6 to 12 months of joining the Firm. Other programs and training resources will be available to you, depending on your personal development needs, to build specific skills (such as problem solving or communications), or to provide additional industry (e.g., electronics, consumer goods, healthcare, financial services) and functional knowledge (e.g., marketing, sales, corporate finance, business dynamics, strategy). We encourage all our consulting staff to take advantage of the many e-learning programs available at the firm.
In addition, every BA has a Development Group Leader (DGL), a senior member of the firm who offers guidance on career choices and engagement assignments. You will also naturally build informal mentor relationships with team members and office colleagues.
We view the Business Analyst position as the start of a rewarding, challenging, and highly flexible career with McKinsey. During your first two years with the firm, you will serve on multiple client engagements and work with a number of McKinsey colleagues and clients in a range of industry and functional areas. Beyond the initial 2 year commitment, there are several different paths you can pursue; we encourage all well-performing BAs to remain with the Firm and will hold ongoing discussions with you to define the path that is most appropriate and attractive to you. Possible options may include:
• Advancing directly to a senior associate role when ready. We are committed to promoting distinctive performers to more advanced roles when they have demonstrated readiness for these roles. For some, that may happen after 2 or 3 years in the BA role; for others, it may take less than 2 years or may happen after attending graduate school.
• Pursuing a unique third-year BA opportunity within McKinsey. Many BAs choose to spend a third year working in a new geography (e.g., Europe, Asia) or role, such as a practice rotation (e.g., corporate finance, private equity, operations, marketing) or a rotation with the McKinsey Global Institute or Social Sector Office.
• Working with a non-profit organization as part of McKinsey’s Nonprofit Corps.
• Attending graduate school. Those BAs who receive an offer to return to McKinsey as a senior associate after graduate school are eligible for educational support to help defray the costs of graduate school. Our policy has been to forgive this loan over two years for former BAs who return to the Firm as Associates.
We are committed to supporting you in whatever career path is most exciting to you and best fits your development goals. We believe the BA role provides an outstanding starting point for a long-term relationship with McKinsey and we look forward to working with you to shape a personalized, highly compelling set of experiences.