Careers At Accenture: Which Stream Is The Best Fit For You?

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If you’re a student or recent grad searching for an egg-citing career, look no further than Accenture!

As one of the world’s leading professional services companies, this global firm works with the world’s largest and most successful organizations, including 89 of the Fortune Global 100, 80 percent of the Fortune Global 500, and government agencies around the world. Additionally, Accenture offers a range of career options that can satisfy the widest interests. With its five core business areas – Strategy, Consulting, Digital, Technology, and Operations – you will surely find a stream that suits your skill set.

But with so many options to choose from, how do you know which specialty is right for you? Fortunately, we had the chance to connect with some recent grads at Accenture to learn a little bit more about each area, and the skills and qualities you need to succeed.

Read on to learn more!

Accenture Strategy

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Michael Corridore
Analyst
Ivey Business School at Western University, 2014

Have a fantastic internship, get hired into a full-time role, build an amazing career.

It sounds like a dream scenario, but for Michael Corridore, it was his real journey to his current position as an analyst in Accenture Strategy.

Today, he spends most of his time helping clients in Communications, Media, and Technology solve some of their most pressing strategic issues. He also leads the Accenture Accelerated Engagement recruiting program across Canada. Since many students have a limited understanding what a consultant really does, his program hosts mock consulting engagements on campus to give them a taste of the industry.

Do you like…
– Working on shorter, more strategic engagements?
– Financial modelling?
– Planning?
Then a role in Accenture Strategy could be a great fit for you!

Strategy consulting is not your typical corporate job. As Michael explains, “A career in the strategy field is all about solving challenging problems that often do not have an easy or clean solution.” This means that you need to have a combination of top-notch communication skills, analytical abilities, and a healthy dose of creativity to succeed in this role.

Additionally, if you’re someone who isn’t sure whether a larger organization or a smaller enterprise would be a better fit for you, you’ll be happy knowing that Accenture combines the best of both worlds. Not only will you have the opportunity work with some of the largest and most influential companies in the world, but the size of the firm makes it perfect for meeting a slew of smart and interesting people. However, they are also very committed to developing local office communities within the larger organization, so you will always feel like a part of the team.

While Michael admits that working at Accenture can be pretty fast-paced, the environment also makes it the perfect place for people who are excited by the prospect of diving right into a new challenge.

“The firm is not afraid to put students in situations that would normally require skills beyond that of a new graduate, but this really helps accelerate personal and professional growth,” says Michael.

“The amount that I can truly say I have learned in my short career at Accenture continues to astound me!”

Accenture Consulting

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Stephanie Noujeim
Technology Consulting Analyst
École Polytechnique de Montréal, Industrial Engineering, 2014

After working in the IT department for an Insurance company for six months, new grad Stephanie kickstarted her career with Accenture in the usual way: by joining the team as an entry-level Consulting Analyst. She started off working on a procurement project for a railroad company and two years later, she is now the process lead on that very same project.

“My day-to-day job is to act as the “bridge” between the business team and the IT teams (client and software solution),” explains Stephanie.

In a nutshell, employees in the Consulting stream provide industry knowledge and best practices to create solutions for their client’s business needs. It can be a challenging role at first; right away, you will be given responsibilities that will directly impact your team’s success. Fortunately, Accenture provides a lot of support for new hires to help them get settled into their new positions.

The Most Popular Entry Level Roles At Accenture
– Consulting
– Business Analyst
– Business Process Designer
– Business Architect

“The Accenture model is very ‘training-oriented,’” says Stephanie. New employees go through extensive coaching and onboarding to help them build the skills to succeed in their roles. Additionally, employees have access to an online learning tool where hundreds of training capsules are available for free and are accessible at any time.

Additionally, if you’re not sure what you want to do right away, that’s okay! The organization gives employees the opportunity to try  different roles and work with different client accounts to help them find their perfect fit.

“At Accenture, no path is alike,” says Stephanie. “You could choose to become a specialist in a tool, or on a specific topic, or you could become a generalist in a specific industry for example. Because your aspirations evolve and because Accenture offers many different opportunities, it could really go many ways!”

Accenture Digital

Mark Pearl

Mark Pearl
Digital Business Integration Analyst
University of Ottawa, Management & Information Systems, 2015

Before he started university, Mark Pearl had one overarching goal as young professional: to “bridge the gap” between business and technology.

It’s the reason why he specialized in Management and Information Systems at the University of Ottawa, and today, it’s what helped make him uniquely qualified for his role at Accenture.

Mark is a Digital Business Integration Analyst at Accenture. It’s an important role – he needs to understand and help translate his client’s needs into business and technology solutions that will eventually make up the backbone infrastructure of some of Canada’s leading institutions.

Q: How do you find your first project at Accenture?

A: Your assigned career counsellor and talent fulfillment specialist can help you navigate the staffing process. However, you still need to be proactive.

“As soon as I got to corporate training, I was already messaging managers and senior managers within the Toronto area to see what projects were out there,” says Mark.

As a first year analyst, Mark began his career in Accenture’s Digital Development program. The initiative helps new hires figure out where they fit into Accenture Digital’s three key pillars: Analytics, Mobility, and Interactive.

“The program allows you to understand where your true strengths lie,” says Mark. “Throughout my experience with the firm, I was able to understand that my background and skill set were more aligned to our Analytics practice.”

From there, Accenture’s partnerships with leading technology vendors allowed him to pursue egg-citing training opportunities and develop many in-demand skills that he can apply directly to his work.

However, there is plenty you can do before you get hired to set yourself up for success. For instance, Mark suggests learning some programming languages like Java or Scala to help you build the necessary technical skills. In addition, strong communication and business skills are a must, so look into taking courses in Marketing, Strategic Management, and Economics. But, more than anything, you need to be passionate about the field.

“A career in Accenture Digital entails cutting-edge work that will challenge you to become a great professional, and person as well,” says Mark.

Accenture Technology

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Isaac Lin
Business & Technology Delivery Senior Analyst
University of Pennsylvania, Bioengineering, 2015

Take it from Accenture newcomer Isaac Lin: it’s not always easy to jump into a new career right after graduation.

“The transition from post-grad to adulthood kind of hit me like a bus,” says Isaac. Fortunately for him, finding the right position at an amazing company helped make things a lot easier.

Currently, he works as a Technical Analyst in the Accenture Cloud Applications group, where he focuses on delivering Cloud software solutions to clients. His responsibilities can include anything from leading a team of developers and interviewing clients to the nitty-gritty coding that forms the foundation of any technology solution.

“These first few months have definitely been incredible,” says Isaac about his new career. “I found that there was so much to learn from those around me, and I genuinely appreciate my colleagues both as professionals and individuals.”

What’s the difference between Accenture Consulting and Technology?
In Accenture Technology, your role is often aligned with delivering a solution based on a specific technology, like Salesforce or Oracle. With Accenture Consulting, you’re aligned to delivering solutions based on a specific industry such as Financial Services or Health. Additionally, part of the excitement of a consulting career is that there are always new problems to solve and people to meet. An “average day” doesn’t exist at Accenture. A client’s needs, requirements, and expectations can change on a daily basis so be prepared for a dynamic and fast-paced career that will definitely keep you on your toes.

Technology careers at Accenture are incredibly diverse and involve roles at every stage of the technology implementation life cycle,” explains Isaac.

If you’re passionate about programming and building new components, you might find yourself going down a software engineering path. If you love engaging clients and learning their business processes and needs, a business analyst path may be a better fit. Whatever your goals, there’s a path for you at Accenture and plenty of support along the way.

“For a young professional looking to gain exposure to the newest, most relevant and most powerful modern technology solutions, the Technology arm offers projects that are always at the forefront,” says Isaac. “The learning potential is truly immense!”

Accenture Operations

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Ola Al-Bassam
Infrastructure Consulting Analyst
McMaster University, Electrical Engineering, 2014

Want to gain valuable work experience fast? At Accenture, if you join the team at the entry level, you can be assured that you will hit the ground running in your new role.

Take Ola Al-Bassam, for example. In just over a year, she has had the chance to work on short-term projects, multiple project proposals, and is currently working on leading and planning her next project release.

As an Infrastructure Consulting Analyst, she is a member of the technical architecture team for a major transportation client.

“Accenture Operations provides technical solutions to clients,” explains Ola. “The solution can be based on the latest technical trend (like data migration between data centers, cloud-based solutions) or the latest network required to support the next generation of smartphones.”

A role in this business stream requires strong teamwork and problem-solving skills, but also comes with constant opportunities to improve and develop your technical knowledge and gain hands-on experience. It’s one of the many reasons why Accenture is such a great place for students and grads to start their careers. Whatever skills you want to develop, or interests you want to pursue, there are avenues to help you get where you need to go.

If you’re not sure which stream is right for you, Ola suggests embracing your student side and doing some research on the current projects aligned to each work stream to see which clients you would be most interested in working with. But at the end of the day, if you want to hatch a successful career at Accenture, there are plenty of tools and opportunities to make that happen.

“Every team I have worked within Accenture, whether it was project-based or extracurricular, has been a great experience,” says Ola. “Everyone finds their place within the team and synchronously works together.”

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