What is a business case interview?
Employers may ask candidates to evaluate a business situation during the interview process; this is called a business case interview.
How long is the case? What is it like?
Cases can be short (a few sentences) or long (10+ pages). Often candidates are asked to analyze and present the case during the interview, and are allotted a specific amount of time. Sometimes cases are assigned in advance of the interview and you are asked to come prepared to present during the interview. Cases may involve using a calculator or not.
What types of employers ask business case questions?
Consulting firms and those with analyst positions may use cases. But any type of organization or company may throw a case question at a candidate.
Why do employers use case interviews?
This is a great way to test your logic, problem-solving, and intellect. It’s also a way to see how well you understand the company’s business and industry.
What are typical questions given for a case interview?
Just like basic interview questions, case questions can vary as well. Here are some potential case interview topics:
· How can the firm grow revenue and/or increase profit?
· How should the firm set up distribution?
· Should the firm make the acquisition?
· What should the firm develop for its product/service pipeline?
· How should the department reorganize?
· How can the firm react to the competitive threat?
· Which market should the firm enter?
· What should be the firm’s integrated marketing plan?
· How should the firm incentivize its sales force to meet its revenue goals?
Basic Steps to Approach the Case:
· Read the case carefully – note important information
· Understand the question(s) being asked
· Watch your time
· Plan for your presentation and be ready to answer questions
Steps to Analyze the Case:*
1. Establish Your Understanding
2. Set Up the Framework
3. Evaluate Case Using the Framework
4. Summarize and Make Recommendations
*Adapted from BCG web site: https://www.bcg.com/en-us/careers/path/consulting/practice-interview-cases.aspx
· Acknowledge missing information
· Use the data presented in the case when evaluating a firm’s situation – financial statements, charts, graphs, etc.
· Recognize there is not always a RIGHT answer – cases are to see how you work through problems
· Try practicing case interviewing to be prepared.
Resources for Case Interviews:
Case in Point10 by Marc P. Cosentino (the book is available on Amazon)
https://big4careerlab.com/67-big-4-interview-questions-answer/ (use for accounting firms)