6 Types of Case Interviews: Why You Need to Know Each One
Case studies rely on real-life or hypothetical scenarios, in which a client hires the services of one of the above firms in order to improve, or structure, new business strategies whose end target is profit maximization. The assessor first tells the applicant the basic story of the case study, then asks the applicant some questions. The candidate assignment is to ask more questions, understand the issues he is facing and answer the questions.
Case interviews are not to be confused with assessment centre case study tests which work on similar principles but require an analysis of a file of written documents rather than gathering the information in an interview form. Each case study is likely to involve a quantitative aspect that includes financial understanding, statistical data etc, together with qualitative data in the form of research summaries, company history, etc. In turn, the applicant's recommendation should include reference to and integration of both types of data.
Written case interview tips Bain website. Footloose case question by Deloitte. Retail Strategy case question Deloitte website.
Consulting Case Interviews: How to Prepare 
Finance Strategy case question Deloitte website. Case interview workbook by Accenture. Aqualine case example Oliver Wyman website. Wumbleworld case example Oliver Wyman website. Promotion planning case question A. Kearney website. Consulting case book and examples by A. Berkeley case book Columbia case book Darden case book Duke case book ESADE case book Goizueta case book Harvard case book Illinois case book LBS case book MIT case book Notre Dame case book Ross case book Wharton case book See if you pass a realistic case interview from the top tier consulting firms.
What are the best case interview examples to practice? The best case interview examples to practice are the ones that come directly from the firms themselves. The top consulting firms, including McKinsey, BCG, and Bain, all provide real examples based on representative consulting projects.
Comprehensive preparation for consulting interviews
What are the most common types of case interview examples? You can practice examples of each of these case types in this Definitive Guide to Case Interview Examples. A case interview can be solved by breaking the business problem into its component parts.
This includes structuring the problem, analyzing the key issues, conducting quantitative analysis, uncovering insights, coming up with creative solutions, and delivering recommendations supported by the case facts. Practice driving each part of the sample business problem yourself.
What did you get right? Find partners to practice with. Teamwork is an important part of consulting work, so get ready for it now. Look for aspects of their approach that are effective as well as what they could do better. Working with a partner will make your interview practice feel more real. Similar to how you need a tennis partner to feel what is like to play tennis, you need a case partner to experience what a case interview is like.
Master the 4 parts of the case interview question.
On this page , we discussed the 4 parts of the case interview: the opening, structure, analysis, and conclusion. Avoid burnout. You were drawn to consulting as a career because you loved the idea of solving complex business problems with smart, passionate teammates. But one thing that can happen as you spend hours practicing how to answer case interview questions is that it can practice too much and become a case zombie. Their answers will feel rehearsed, not conversational. They may seem bored, not engaged in solving the problem.
Avoid becoming a case zombie by practicing smarter, not harder. In their example, Davis and Dan demonstrate how to approach the business problem. They also provide examples of good answers to the interview question and exceptional answers.
Table of Contents
Take note of what differentiates a good answer from an exceptional answer so that you can not only get through your interview, but ace it. Here your goal is to understand the client, their business, and what a successful project will look like. After ensuring you understand the client and their problem, the next thing to ask about is key metrics of success. For instance, the client may want to find new avenues for growth. After you find out what success looks like, ask further probing questions to better understand the client, their business, and any constraints on solving their business problem.
Relevant questions about the client might include the geography they operate in or the sector of their industry they are strongest in. Relevant questions about their business might include what products or services are most profitable or most important to their customers. You can use one of the many standard business frameworks that we discuss on this page , but top interviewees develop their own framework for analyzing the case.
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Second, good frameworks cover all topics relevant to the answer. For example, if the client is opening up a new hotel in a foreign country, checking out the existing competition should be part of the framework. This means the framework will break down the market or population being analyzed into categories that include every part of the whole collectively exhaustive , and each segment of the market or member of the population will show up in one and only one category without overlap mutually exclusive.
For example, if you divide the target market for a retail product into segments by age, the segments , , , , etc. The categories , , would not be MECE because people could be counted twice. We cover this topic in depth in other articles. Your questions will likely lead you to one of the 4 types of analysis that are common in consulting interviews: market sizing, brainstorming, quantitative reasoning case math , or reading exhibits.
Once you have the data, you need to interpret it. Next, provide insight. This insight will naturally lead to the next steps. What does the client need to do to get costs under control and fix their profitability problem?