In an increasingly global economy, businesses have fewer boundaries than ever before, and must go where the opportunities are in order to survive, compete and grow. The rising importance of the Asia Pacific region is no secret—China and Japan boast the second- and third- largest economies in the world, with China expected to become the world's leading economic power sometime in the next two decades.
With that reality in mind, Vault.com has been surveying consultants at firms in the Asia Pacific region since 2010, and using their responses to rank consulting firms in the region across a variety of factors. Our Best to Work For rankings identify crucial quality of life areas, while our Practice Area and Prestige rankings are based on consultants' opinions of their competitors' abilities and appeal. And our Top Asia Pacific Consulting weights several of those individual factors to arrive at a ranking of the best firms operating in the region today. (Check out the full methodology here.
Whether you're an experienced consultant or someone weighing up your options for the first time, are in Asia already or are considering pursuing an international opportunity, these rankings—and the comments from the 500+ consultants who took the time to tell us about life at their companies—will be able to provide the kind of insight that will enable you to make a better, more informed decision about your future. For a summary of the rankings, read on. Otherwise, feel free to skip straight to the rankings themselves—and be sure to click through to the full profiles of any firms that interest you to find out more, including Vault's own verdict on each of them.
Bain Dominates Best to Work For
Bain & Company took the top spot in the Vault Asia Pacific Consulting Ranking, based on a complete dominance of the Best to Work For rankings, taking the top spot in all 26 categories. McKinsey also performed strongly in the Best to Work For categories, but really shined in the Practice Area Rankings, taking the No. 1 spot in four separate categories. Most importantly, McKinsey was once again named the Most Prestigious Consulting firm in the region by survey respondents.
The Top 10 Asia Pacific Firms to Work for Based on Vault's Annual Consulting Survey are:
1. Bain & Company
2. McKinsey & Company
3. Booz & Company
4. Oliver Wyman
5. Monitor Group
6. A.T. Kearney
7. OC&C Strategy Consultants
8. Roland Berger Strategy Consulting
9. Value Partners Group
Employees praised the culture at Bain & Company, with one insider offering practical advice to job seekers in the consulting sector: "Do not underestimate the importance of culture — how you get along with those you work with — this is very important in a high-pressure industry like consulting. Bain has by far the best culture of any of the 'Big 3'. Keep that in mind as you go about your search or decision-making process."
Another employee agreed that Bain has "the best culture in consulting — deep focus on clients, and even deeper on employees." Another Bain consultant expressed his overall satisfaction with the firm, saying, "Bain is without a doubt, the BEST place I could have started my career. What I have learned over the last four years (both soft and hard skills) far exceeds my peers at other consulting firms and in other industries."
Name Value Puts McKinsey & Company on Top in Prestige and Practice Area Rankings
Enjoying where you work is important, but prestige still matters to job seekers looking to have the biggest and best names on their resume. According to industry insiders, McKinsey & Company still reigns as the most prestigious firm in the consulting world, edging out Boston Consulting Group and Bain. The firm also performed strongly in the Practice Area Rankings, coming in at No. 1 for Management Consulting, Economic Consulting, Energy Consulting and Financial Consulting. Survey respondents stated that McKinsey provided "professionalism all the time," and called the firm "the benchmark," "global number 1," "boardroom leaders," and "best in class."
Firms coming in at No. 1 in other practice areas (including representative quotes from survey respondents at peer firms):
Strategy: Arthur D. Little ("Long history")
HR: Hay Group ("HR! Not comparable")
IT: Accenture ("IT gurus")
Operations Consulting: Accenture ("Very profitable")
Healthcare: The Boston Consulting Group ("Creative thinkers")
View the entire Vault Asia Pacific Consulting Rankings.