How I Got A Call From Ernst & Young...Even Though They Didn't Recruit At My College

by Jaineel Aga

This chapter is a free excerpt from The Best Book on Getting Consulting Jobs In India.

My internship at Ernst & Young, a multi-national corporation, popular for being among the "Top 4" audit and consulting firms in the world, played a crucial role in my admission to the Duke Masters in Engineering Management (MEM) program, as well as being a solid bullet point on my resume/CV when I applied to other management consulting firms.

Consulting firms always like to see relevant internship experience, which reflects the desire to go into the world of consulting and think analytically.

Once I realized the importance of internships, I identified the consulting firms in India that would be willing to give an opportunity to a student who is not necessarily from one of the IITs. You need to clear the rigorous case interviews and fit rounds, but the first step is to get face time with them.

To do so, I had to figure out to get my resume across to the recruiters and human resources (HR) personnel at companies like Accenture, Ernst & Young, and BCG. In  India, it may be difficult to get responses when you submit resumes through company websites. It is possible that it will be lost in the flood of applicants  and the most effective way is through networking.

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My internship at Ernst & Young, a multi-national corporation, popular for being among the "Top 4" audit and consulting firms in the world, played a crucial role in my admission to the Duke Masters in Engineering Management (MEM) program, as well as being a solid bullet point on my resume/CV when I applied to other management consulting firms.

Consulting firms always like to see relevant internship experience, which reflects the desire to go into the world of consulting and think analytically.

Once I realized the importance of internships, I identified the consulting firms in India that would be willing to give an opportunity to a student who is not necessarily from one of the IITs. You need to clear the rigorous case interviews and fit rounds, but the first step is to get face time with them.

To do so, I had to figure out to get my resume across to the recruiters and human resources (HR) personnel at companies like Accenture, Ernst & Young, and BCG. In  India, it may be difficult to get responses when you submit resumes through company websites. It is possible that it will be lost in the flood of applicants  and the most effective way is through networking.

Here's what I did:
  • I found out where these companies went to the recruit for the junior analyst level. Typically they recruited BMS ( Bachelor of Management Studies) or BA (Bachelor of Arts) students at local commerce and arts colleges for such positions. I learned that Ernst & Young, for example, recruited junior analysts from BMS programs at Jai Hind College and Xavier's College in Mumbai.
  • I identified the colleges and courses where these consulting firms recruited. I did my 11th and 12th grade in Jai Hind College.  Post-junior college, I went on to pursue a four-year engineering degree in a private engineering college; however, I was well aware of the fact that many students from my junior college had opportunities to be junior analysts at companies like Accenture, Deloitte, Ernst & Young and KPMG.
  • I networked with someone from my college who was currently at E&Y.  After a thorough deep dive into my network, I was eventually able to find a person through a mutual friend who was at E&Y.   I knew that my resume had to reach the HR desk or the decision maker, so the key was to send my resume to the contact at E&Y through our mutual friend. However, just forwarding your resume is not enough-- you need to follow up constantly until it reaches the right person.
This is a fairly arduous process, one where success may come only after a number of failures. For example, when I investigated other firms like Deloitte, I was not able to source even one contact in my college network that I could leverage. When I reached a dead end with one firm, I focused on the next in line.

Once I had found contacts and submitted my resume, I got an interview call.
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