Cambridge MBA students talking.

Consulting careers: MBAs switch location, industry and sector

12 April 2024

The article at a glance

As we publish the Cambridge MBA employment report 2024, we explore the career outcomes for some of our most recent graduates.

Category: Programme news

Cambridge Judge Business School Head of Careers, Sadia Cuthbert, says of the recently published Employment Report 2024, “Even in a tough recruitment environment, there was a high rate of career switching.

Overall, while the recruitment landscape may have been challenging, our class of 2022/23 MBA graduates’ success in securing employment and navigating career transitions reflects positively on their abilities and the quality of education and support they received.”

“Strategy consulting, technology, healthcare/pharma, venture capital (VC)/private equity (PE), were the key sectors of choice for the class. Twenty-seven per cent of Cambridge MBA 2022 job seekers chose to go into consulting.”

Making the leap from a career in finance

Anaya Velamakanni.
Ananya Velamakanni, MBA 2022

For Ananya Velamakanni from the Netherlands, Cambridge was all about opportunity. Coming from a background in finance having worked for Deloitte Nederland as a consultant in their Amsterdam office, Ananya was looking to join a strategy consulting firm after the MBA.

“I chose to come to Cambridge to pursue my MBA, as I thought it would be the right career move for me. I wanted to pivot from finance technology consulting to more strategy consulting, and the consulting skill set or the strategic thinking skills that we develop as part of the MBA, made me choose Cambridge.”

She explains, “During the year, I was involved in the MBA Consulting Special Interest Group (SIG). I was part of some of the consulting case prep they conducted. It was a very rewarding experience, as I was also preparing for interviews at the MBB firms at the same time.”

Choosing to tailor the MBA programme at Cambridge Judge towards her career goals, Ananya selected a Concentration in Strategy.

“We had guest speakers from BCG and ARM and other industry leaders during our Concentration coach nights, which were some of the most exceptional lectures during the course.”

“The main Concentration project that we had to deliver was interviewing C-suite individuals at a company of your choice and understanding the strategy formulation within that company. This was great for me. I chose a company based in New York and interviewed the CEO and Chief Strategy Officer, among others. This gave me some wonderful insights into how strategies were formulated in that company.”

Ananya went on to do her Global Consulting Project (GCP) with Porsche Consulting.

Consulting on a live project of strategic value for 4 weeks, during the Cambridge MBA, allows you to build your career portfolio, as well as expand your network and skills, while still studying for your MBA degree.

Through this range of projects and experiences Ananya concludes, “The MBA has equipped me with the right strategic thinking skills and the critical thinking mindset for the next steps in my career. I feel it has equipped me with the transferable skills to support my growth in whichever role I plan to take after my MBA.”

Ananya now works for Siemens, based in Germany, switching locations after the MBA.

The MBA has equipped me with the right strategic thinking skills and the critical thinking mindset for the next steps in my career. I feel it has equipped me with the transferable skills to support my growth in whichever role I plan to take after my MBA.

Ananya Velamakanni, MBA 2022

The triple jump from country, role and sector

Yik Kho.
Jordan Kho, MBA 2022

Jordan Kho from Malaysia had been working across the tech sector from digital transformation within startups to restructuring and special projects for AirAsia. But he was looking for something else in his career.

“Working across a wide variety of industries, I really enjoyed the whole experience of looking at the problems for each employer and solving them. This made me think about a career in consulting and I thought an MBA was a great way to pivot myself into consulting in a variety of ways.”

Jordan also benefited from the live project experience available during the MBA year itself. My Cambridge Venture Project (CVP) was with a very diverse team of individuals.

He explains, “I had never worked with people who are this strong minded before. And it made me think about the sort of leadership styles that I needed to develop in the future. It was very different from the experiences I had had before.”

Similarly, Jordan’s Global Consulting Project (GCP) team worked on a project doing market research about the capabilities of AI for the EV sector for Aurias in London.

“The GCP gave me the opportunity to explore the VC environment and what a VC does on a day-to-day basis, to find out what that industry was all about without actually committing myself to the sector.”

Jordan tailored his MBA learning towards leadership roles, selecting MBA electives that covered the hard skills such as Leadership in organisations.

“So, what I tried to do was to tailor my MBA in such a way that when I go into business in the future, I will be able to understand the drivers that a business has in terms of the costs and the profitability, for example. I’ve chosen courses that will help me to analyse and provide a framework to analyse these different businesses in the future.”

Jordan concludes, “I came into the MBA, knowing that I wanted to get into consulting. So, it was very good that I got the triple jump that I wanted.”

Jordan Kho is now based in London, working for Concentrix as a Senior Consultant.

What I tried to do was to tailor my MBA in such a way that when I go into business in the future, I will be able to understand the drivers that a business has in terms of the costs and the profitability, for example. I've chosen courses that will help me to analyse and provide a framework to analyse these different businesses in the future. I came into the MBA, knowing that I wanted to get into consulting. So, it was very good that I got the triple jump that I wanted.

Jordan Kho, MBA 2022

Stepping into consulting from a career in Government

Taylor Golden.
Taylor Golden, MBA 2022

Also landing a coveted role at Concentrix is MBA graduate from the USA, Taylor Golden. Taylor was a Senior Operations Manager in Washington, DC, before choosing to do an MBA.

Looking to make her own impact on a company and lead on decision making, Taylor chose the UK for her MBA to gain the credentials and the credibility in my career.

“I did a Case Competition in the first term at Cambridge Judge, and this really built my confidence up, in a subject I really didn’t know much about at the beginning.”

“I was lucky to be selected by the Careers team at Cambridge Judge to attend a special recruitment presentation during the MBA, where we heard everything about the company and what it had to offer.”

“I loved everything that I heard, it seemed like exactly the right fit for me. I stayed connected with the Operations Director after the visit and when I then applied, I had a relationship with the company to start with.”

“The Careers Team then worked with me on my CV, as well as my interview skills and really helped me find this thread in my career, and helped position the things that I had done and the experiences I had had in the correct way to be exactly what they were looking for.”

“I have secured a position as a senior consultant at Concentrix London, doing operational excellence work. One of the best things about this position that I’m very fortunate about is that I get to stay in Cambridge.”

I was lucky to be selected by the Careers team at Cambridge Judge to attend a special recruitment presentation during the MBA, where we heard everything about the company and what it had to offer. I loved everything that I heard, it seemed like exactly the right fit for me. I stayed connected with the Operations Director after the visit and when I then applied, I had a relationship with the company to start with.

Taylor Golden, MBA 2022

Access the full report

Request your copy of the 2024 MBA employment report.

Employment report on screen.

I was looking for international exposure, but I have never seen a more diverse environment than the diversity I experienced at Cambridge.

Cheryl Theixar, Standard Chartered

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