The consulting industry is trying to attract and train a more diverse set of future business leaders. One way Bain & Co. is helping increase the diversity of its consultants is through its BASE Scholar Program.
The BASE Scholar Program is open to individuals who are MBA fellows through “Management Leadership for Tomorrow” or “The Consortium.”
Candidates must intend to start business school in the year of their application, identify as Black, Latinx, or Native American, and be interested in a consulting career at Bain.
The Bain BASE Scholar Program provides both training and a glimpse into the day-to-day work of a consultant. It’s an excellent opportunity to further a career in the industry.
In this article, we’ll discuss:
- What the Bain BASE Scholar internship is,
- Key steps in applying to consulting positions,
- What the Bain BASE Scholar interview process looks like, plus top tips, and
- Resources that can help you prepare for your BASE Scholar interview.
Let’s get started!
What Is the Bain BASE Scholar Program?
The Bain BASE Scholar program centers around a week-long summer “BASE Camp” designed to give attendees a feel for life as a Bain consultant.
During that week, you’re assigned to a real-life in-flight case for a Bain client. Working with the rest of the Bain team, you’ll test your consulting skills and build your business experience.
There’s also the chance to build your network and seek out mentors through training sessions and social events.
Those who excel during BASE camp will be offered the opportunity of a Bain internship the following summer.
How Does the Bain BASE Scholar Internship Differ From ExperienceBain?
ExperienceBain is a larger program open to all incoming MBA students heading to specific schools. It’s a virtual program run throughout the summer to help you build your skills and get clear on whether consulting’s the career for you.
If you’re eligible, Bain encourages you to apply to both programs.
Tips for Creating Strong Applications for Consulting Positions Including Bain BASE
Consulting positions are competitive, so you want to put your best foot forward by creating a strong application. Start by creating a consulting resume and cover letter in support of your application.
We’ve got 4 essential tips for acing the initial application:
- Understand what’s required. Make sure you follow any application instructions carefully. It’s important to know what you need to fill in, where you need to send your application, and whether you should attach any additional information.
- Do your research. Before you apply, make sure you understand Bain’s history, culture, clients, and the case types that the firm deals with. Research the traits they look for in successful consultants and tailor your application to showcase how you meet those traits. (There’s a link to the Bain website in our resources section below.)
- Quality over quantity. Recruiters don’t need to know every tiny detail about everything you’ve ever been involved in. Draw attention to your most relevant achievements and those you’re most proud of.
- Proofread your application. Take the time to read over your application and check for errors in spelling and grammar. Get a friend or coach to give it a once-over to make sure everything makes sense and is as clear and compelling as it can be.
If your application is successful, the next steps will include any, or all, of the following:
- Pre-screening Tests
- Behavioral/Fit Interviews
- Case Interviews
- Group Case Interviews
- Assessment Days
Nail the case & fit interview with strategies from former MBB Interviewers that have helped 85% of our clients pass the case interview.
What the Bain BASE Scholar Interview Process Looks Like
Candidates selected to interview for the BASE Scholar program will complete 2 short interviews of around 30 minutes. Interviews are back-to-back and will be conducted virtually.
The first 10 minutes will be behavioral questions designed to check how well you’ll thrive in the Bain culture. The final 20 minutes will be a short case interview.
Note: Some offices use only case interviews (including Melbourne.)
Bain reassures applicants they won’t test them on business concepts at this stage. The recruiting team is more interested in the way candidates think about and approach solving problems and how they communicate solutions.
The case interview will include a market sizing question and be focused on profitability, revenue growth (new product or growth strategy), or cost-cutting cases. Non-profit or operations cases are less likely to feature.
Tips to Tackle the Bain BASE Scholars interview
We’ve got loads of information on tackling both cases and fit interviews in our resources list below.
However, there are 4 main tips that apply to any consulting interview, no matter where you’re applying or the stage in the process.
- Listen. Make sure you listen to the question that’s being asked. Then, make sure you answer that question! Take a minute to think through how you want to respond to ensure you cover all the points you need to, clearly and logically.
- Practice. Consulting interviews get easier with practice. See our resources on the case and behavioral interviews for more information on what will be asked, and then practice answering those types of questions with a friend, mentor, or coach.
- Engage. Try to engage in the interview as if it were a conversation. This is especially important for the BASE Scholar interview.
The recruiting team understands you have limited business experience at this stage, so they’ll be looking for people who are engaging, communicate confidently, and who would fit well into their team.
- Breathe. Interviews can be daunting but don’t forget to breathe! Your brain needs oxygen to function, so make sure you support it by taking a few deep breaths before beginning the interview
Resources To Help You Prepare for Your BASE Scholar Interview
So, that’s it! A whistle-stop tour of the BASE Scholar program. We have lots of resources that can help you create a winning application and ace the interview below:
- Building and Supporting Excellence (BASE) Scholars
- Consulting Cover Letters that Land Interviews: Our Complete Guide
- The Management Consulting Resume: Our Step-by-Step Guide
- How to Ace Market Sizing Questions in Your Consulting Interviews
- A Comprehensive Guide to Case Interview Prep
- The Consulting Fit Interview: What to Say, What NOT to Say
- Why Bain?
In this article, we’ve covered:
- What the Bain BASE Scholars program consists of,
- The process of applying to consulting positions,
- The format of the Bain BASE Scholars interview and tips to tackle it, and
- A collection of resources to prepare for the BASE Scholars program.
Still have questions?
If you have more questions about the Bain BASE Scholar interview, leave them in the comments below. One of My Consulting Offer’s case coaches will answer them.
Help with Your Consulting Application
Thanks for turning to My Consulting Offer for advice on consulting applications. My Consulting Offer has helped almost 85% of the people we’ve worked with to get a job in management consulting. We want you to be successful in your consulting interviews too. For example, here is how Bill was able to get his offer from Bain.