The BCG Online Case has emerged as a formidable force in the landscape of management consulting hiring. In short, the BCG Online Case contains two components:
- GMAT-style questions
- 3 interviewer-led cases with Casey the chatbot, including a 1min video recording that you must upload at the end of each case
When preparing candidates for the BCG Online Case (or the Casey Chatbot Interview, Casey Chatbot Case, or Potential Test, as it’s come to be known), we’ve found that the online case’s perceived difficulty is directly proportional to the kind of prep the candidate has done, and their familiarity with the environment they’re “walking” into. So, what exactly is the BCG Online Case and what can you do to prepare for it? Read on to find out.
What Is the BCG Online Case?
Let’s start with the obvious question: what is the BCG Online Case? The Online Case is one step (often the first) in the interview process for Boston Consulting Group. The Online Case is essentially a series of case interviews conducted online – however, instead of verbally answering prompts, you answer multiple choice, short answer, and fill-in questions that are both quantitative and qualitative in nature.
What makes things confusing is that the BCG Online Case contains a standardized test component, often referred to as the BCG Online Assessment. The BCG Online Assessment tests concepts that are similar to the GMAT. Expect reasoning questions that test your math skills, verbal reasoning skills, and business acumen.
BCG Online Case Format
The BCG Online Case follows a format that’s relatively similar to many other case interviews. In short, applicants are introduced to a specific business situation including a client dealing with a particular objective and/or obstacle. You are offered various forms of information about your client, their goals, and the broader marketplace. After being given some time to analyze the information, you design and present a proposed solution.
The primary difference between the BCG Potential Test and a conventional case interview is that BCG applicants are conducting the online interview within the limitations of a computer program. This is especially noticeable because the Online Case is conducted through chatbot. In the chatbot portion of the interview, three cases are offered containing 8 to 10 questions each, with each case taking 25-30 minutes. Furthermore, applicants provide a 1-minute final recommendation by video recording at the end of each case.
In most conventional, in-person case interviews, applicants have the chance to ask questions of their interviewers to help them better understand the situation. Now, applicants have some ability to interact with the chatbot, but this is more limited. This places extra importance on your ability to develop a strong initial structure. Check out the BCG online case example below- straight from BCG.
Will I Face the BCG Online Case / BCG Chatbot Case?
It is becoming much more common for BCG candidates to face this online case as a 1st step after being invited to interview. We can confirm that it is utilized in offices across the northeastern U.S., but expect the BCG Online Case to continue to be rolled out across geographies through 2022.
It doesn’t seem to matter which role you’re applying for – we’ve seen undergrads, MBAs, PhDs and experienced hires alike be asked to complete the BCG online case.
BCG Online Case Questions
Many of the BCG Online Case questions resemble conventional case questions, at BCG and elsewhere. If you’ve been studying for case interviews in general, you don’t need to be alarmed that you have to learn a new discipline in order to ace the Online Case. The main difference is that you’ll be interacting with a computer instead of a human interviewer and, of course, you’ll be doing it remotely.
The BCG Online Case questions resemble conventional case interviews in the skills and knowledge they draw on. There is a greater variety of question formats and structures, however, than a conventional case interview. As we’ve already stated, BCG online case questions are a mixture of case interview and standardized test. Different sections of the test include a variety of multiple-choice style questions, short and long-form written response questions, recorded video responses, word problems, data analysis, and numerical problems.
One thing to keep in mind that is not a surprise: the case you do with the chatbot will be interviewer-led, so if you’ve only been practicing interviewee-led cases, be familiar with interviewer-led cases as well.
Examples of Case Questions
After being given a case summary, you may be asked questions similar to those below regarding the business situation.
“What is the price per litre the company should charge to maximize profits on gasoline sales?”
“What is the price the company should charge for gasoline per litre to maximize sales from mini markets?”
See BCG’s overview and sample questions here
BCG Online Assessment Similarity to GMAT
Some of the questions in the BCG Online Assessment resemble questions on the GMAT. The transferability of this competence may be good or bad, depending on how good you are at GMAT-style tests. You don’t need to run out and hire an expensive GMAT tutor just to prepare for the BCG Case Study Online. But doing some GMAT-style prep will help. As you’ll recall, the GMAT included a variety of question formats that tested your basic business acumen/judgment, logical reasoning, quant skills, and communications skills. The BCG Online Case, however, will be significantly different. It will draw on a deeper and wider breadth of business knowledge, will involve longer and deeper looks at specific scenarios, and will feel like an even more intense time crunch.
How to Prepare for the BCG Online Case
The good news about the BCG Online Case is that you likely already have most of the skills and knowledge needed to design an effective prep plan. First, assess your gaps. Dust off some of your GMAT prep materials to see where you stand on a lot of the basic quant-heavy skills of a business aptitude test (use our free math drills to get started).
Where you stand here will determine a lot about where you should devote your prep time going forward. Remember, you don’t need to know every esoteric bit of economic theory in order to do well. But brushing up on your Econ 101 fundamentals will definitely help.
Furthermore, you should devote a good chunk of time to reviewing sample and past case interview questions across a variety of subjects. Review BCG example online cases on our YouTube channel. Be diligent about practicing and assessing yourself according to hard time constraints. Many people prepping for the BCG Online Case and similar interviews find it helpful to connect with study partners. Of course, one of the most powerful things you can do is to work one-on-one with an expert who knows this kind of test and can help you work to improve your responses.
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The BCG Online Case is one of the latest hurdles aspiring consultants must clear on their path to a position with Boston Consulting Group. While the exact format of the Online Case is new, the skills being tested are really no different from the skills BCG was looking for 10 and 20 years ago. If you have an upcoming case interview, purchase an hour of interview coaching to work with an ex-BCG coach to refine your process and get ready for the interview of your life! Don’t wait, watch a BCG online case example on our YouTube channel, and do your due diligence. The more guided preparation you do, the better result you can expect to get!