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Broadening my consulting skills with a move to McKinsey

Frans left another global consulting firm to join McKinsey for the space to explore his passion at the intersection of digital transformation and sustainability.

With a strong interest in nature and nature conservation, I studied bioengineering sciences with a focus on environmental technology. After that, I got a masters in management.

Rather unexpected, I entered the ERP world, joining Deloitte in the SAP finance transformation division. During six years I was working both on strategic projects, like SAP S/4HANA roadmaps, and global implementations. It was a great company to work for, but when I was contacted by a McKinsey recruiter in the middle of the pandemic, I decided to explore this new opportunity. I liked what I heard.

I was ready to broaden my consulting skills, and McKinsey offered a world of opportunities, providing a broad scope of work in terms of industry and types of projects. I also appreciated the executive presence at McKinsey. As expert engagement manager, I work closely together with client executive level, but also collaborate closely with McKinsey partners on a daily basis., This isa powerful learning opportunity.

Lastly, McKinsey is a global organization with a global P&L, which means great opportunities to travel and very international teams, which is attractive to me.

Frans De Schamphelaere
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My role at the firm

As an engagement manager at McKinsey, my role is to manage the daily workload of the project, ensure it is executed properly, and deliver long-lasting value for our clients. It means I form the connection between the client, the team and McKinsey leadership. I partner with clients to address some of their most complex challenges, which requires me to understand the end goals and deliverables and to identify how we get organized as a team. It also means I jump in and support specific areas as needed.

I’ve worked on due diligences, supply chain optimization, and ERP transformation projects within different industries, including in agriculture, banking and, most intensely, in the transport and logistics industry. For example, I worked on an ERP transformation where we supported the client rolling out a global target operating model, which came with a very complex IT transformation.

Our approach to such challenges is holistic and focused on value, taking into account operating model, new technology investments, but also change management and talent, , so each project can be quite complex. Ultimately, we’re also trying to bridge the gap between executives and the operational teams. This is great because we spend time with developers, system integrators, business, change management teams and others on the frontline to understand their challenges. We then translate those issues into concrete actions or decisions and present them to the executive team.

Apart from my own client work, I also support other client teams when specific expertise on ERP transformations is required, and am active growing the internal knowledge around such digital transformations.

Making my own McKinsey—and getting back to my roots

I have found all my projects meaningful, but my work at the intersection of digital and sustainability has inspired me most. For example, we have discussions with our clients on how to track and manage carbon accounting flows in complex environments, which could be a game-changer in reporting and reducing carbon emissions on a very large scale.

Those types of projects get me back to my passion, and it has been a pleasant surprise. When I joined McKinsey, I received an email on my second day at the firm from someone who was working on nature conservation analytics. They reached out because they read on my CV that I was interested in biodiversity and nature conservation, and wanted to meet to see if we could work together on future projects.

I was hired with a background in ERP transformations, but there are several opportunities to work around sustainability topics, which is inspiring.

Frans De Schamphelaere
We strive to provide individuals with disabilities equal access to our website. If you would like information about this content we will be happy to work with you. Please email us at: McKinsey_Website_Accessibility@mckinsey.com

More about me

Nature and travel are extremely important to me, so apart from my work at McKinsey, I am involved in nature conservation in the Caucasus (Georgia and Armenia) and central Asia. During the summer holidays, you’ll find me looking for snow leopards in the mountains in Tajikistan or experiencing some other adventure.

I play music, and I used to teach the bass guitar. Beyond that, I love reading, diving, spending time with family and friends, and walking our dog Nina.

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