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Jobs for thousands of young consultants are being upended. From delaying start dates to cutting internships, here's what 8 top firms, like Deloitte and McKinsey, are doing.

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  • Major consultancies are reworking their internship and full-time positions for undergraduate and business school students in response to the pandemic. 
  • Eight firms outlined how they're revamping internships, including allowing some students to work elsewhere at full pay. 
  • Deloitte has pushed many incoming full-time consultants' start dates back to the end of January and has given them a $4,000 stipend. Others, including McKinsey, haven't changed start dates. 
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Thousands of interns and recent graduates set to join top consulting firms may have to wait a while longer. 

The novel coronavirus pandemic has forced companies across industries to rethink how to manage virtual internships, with some, like Airbnb, even cancelling them outright.

Professional services firms have been hit hard by the coronavirus, which has limited their ability to perform things like on-site audits. And many companies are putting major deals and other transformational projects on hold.

On top of that, some of the industries hit hardest are succumbing to the pressure. In the recent bankruptcy filing for J. Crew, for instance, Deloitte was listed as having run up $23 million in bills for the ailing retailer. 

Some major firms have pushed start dates for new hire classes out by months, doling out a stipend in the meantime. Summer internships have been moved online, shortened, or canceled outright, though some firms are giving all interns full-time offers. 

These changes mirror moves by other industries such a law, where Business Insider has reported firms are delaying, shortening, or eliminating their summer internships. 

Here's how eight consultancies are approaching internships and start dates for undergraduate and business school students.

SEE ALSO: Bank of America is pausing financial adviser training for 650 people and reassigning them to handle surging calls from consumer and small-business customers.

READ MORE: Citi's head of campus recruiting explains why the bank just guaranteed full-time offers for interns, and shares its latest thinking on going virtual this summer

Accenture is delaying start dates and holding 10-12 week internship programs remotely.

Accenture is delaying some of its first-year consultants' start dates and giving them a stipend, a spokeswoman said. The company will hold its 10-12 week internship programs remotely, with no changes to the summer schedule.  

The 509,000-employee company will honor all of its full-time offers.  

"We look forward to welcoming all of our graduates that have accepted offers join us," the spokeswoman said.

Read more: The CEO of Training The Street, which coaches 30,000 bankers each year, explains how Wall Street is gearing up for virtual summer internships 



Bain & Company more than doubled its anticipated intern class this year.

Keith Bevans, the US recruitment head at Bain & Company, shared in March that the firm intended to hire 200 summer associates this year. The consultancy has more than doubled its anticipated summer internship class during the pandemic. 

Bain will have more than 450 MBA and undergraduate students for its 10-week internship program, which Bevans expects will be virtual. These summer internships do not guarantee full-time offers next year. The company declined to provide information on how interns will be evaluated during their 10 weeks at the firm. 

Bain is actively recruiting for both full-time and internship positions from universities, Bevans said. The firm declined to share start dates for full-time employees this year.



Boston Consulting Group is delaying start dates for full-time employees and giving its interns three options for the summer.

Business Insider recently spoke with Joe Davis, managing director and partner at BCG, who shared that this year's undergraduate and business school interns have three options to choose from. They can start a virtual internship in June and receive full compensation, pitch a social impact project and still get full pay, or pursue a side hustle or business idea and receive a third of their pay. 

Students who decide to pursue a social impact project can only work at a nonprofit organization. They are not allowed to work at a major corporation or competitor, a spokeswoman said. Those who decide to complete BCG's virtual internship will still work with the firm's clients. The company declined to share the number of interns joining this year. 

BCG is honoring this year's full-time hires as well but their start dates will be delayed, Davis said. The firm is dividing new employees up into groups of three with "staggered starting dates," and each group will have a 1-month, 2-3 month, or 3-4 month onboarding delay. Employees will still be paid the same despite the delays, the spokeswoman said. 

Davis added that immigrant employees with visas and work permits are a top priority and will receive the earliest start date. The firm declined to share the number of full-time employees joining this year.



Deloitte delayed many of its hires and moved all internships online with shortened and unspecified compensation.

Deloitte, which has more than 100,000 employees in the US, delayed many of its hires' start dates to late January. 

New hires received a $4,000 stipend to compensate for the delay, current students who were not authorized to speak to the media told Business Insider. Some new hires who were needed in specific offices or practices, like healthcare, are starting as planned. 

One student said Deloitte's business school internship was revamped into a two-week virtual introduction to consulting. 

A Deloitte employee who was not authorized to speak to the media said an optional undergraduate intern program will run from July 13-24, and the specific focus is still being determined. All interns will receive a stipend, regardless of participation, and they'll also get full-time offers. 

A Deloitte spokeswoman declined to comment on specifics for new hires' start dates and stipends, along with specific changes to the internship program. She noted that all internships were moved online and shortened, with unspecified compensation. 

The spokeswoman also declined to comment on Deloitte's popular policy to pay for the second year of business school for its summer business school interns. The company has not confirmed with students who accepted a summer internship that they'll still have their second year paid for.



EY moved all internships online and deferred promotions and bonuses for full-time employees.

All summer internships offered at EY will be virtual and students will receive training on client work and digital software, a spokeswoman said. Interns will also team up for group projects with clients. EY implemented a 2020 scholarship fund to help interns continue their academic careers and cope with the financial impacts of the pandemic. 

EY deferred promotions and bonuses this year due to the global economic slowdown caused by the pandemic, Business Insider previously reported. The consultancy also reworked plans to hire 23,000 employees in 2020 and instead limited new hires to nearly 11,000, LinkedIn reported.

The firm declined to share start dates for summer internships and full-time hires, how long the internships will be, and if interns' compensation would change. 



KPMG plans to bring in 2,300 college and MBA interns for virtual internships.

KPMG's workforce is entirely remote during the coronavirus pandemic. The professional services firm plans to bring in 2,300 college and MBA interns in July, and they will all work virtually, a spokesman said.

All interns will receive a fixed stipend where they will work 80 hours over a four-week period. Though programs will be shorter than previous years, interns will receive full-time job offers for 2021, or right after they graduate from school. 

James Powell, national partner in charge of campus recruiting at KPMG, said full-time hires from the graduating class of 2020 will likely have delayed start dates to join through November. The firm hasn't decided on exact start dates and whether offices will reopen then, he said. KPMG declined to share the number of full-time employees joining this year.

KPMG is honoring all of its full-time offers to the graduating class of 2020, and the firm is also recruiting for its internship class in 2021. 



McKinsey has not made a decision on start dates for interns or incoming full-time employees.

Management consultancy McKinsey, which has 30,000 global employees, has not made an across-the-board decision on start dates for interns or incoming full-time employees.

Instead, a spokeswoman said recruiters have made hundreds of calls in recent weeks to make individual decisions about timing. The firm's internship program in North America will be fully virtual, and if students opt out, they'll still receive their full pay.  

"We continue to hire and don't foresee major changes to our hiring approach," the spokeswoman said.



PwC moved undergraduate internships online, but MBA interns might not be working remotely.

PwC will welcome 3,500 student interns this year, and the professional services firm is currently recruiting more interns for next year. Those who have already accepted offers to join the firm's 2020 entry-level class will still have their jobs, and the firm will also extend full-time offers to this summer's undergraduate interns for 2021. 

Rod Adams, US talent acquisition leader at PwC, recently told Business Insider that college internships will start on July 6 or later, and they'll be two to 10 weeks long this year. Internships are compensated based on hourly pay, but it is unknown whether students will be allowed to work overtime or how they will be compensated. 

The firm is also honoring all full-time offers, but new employees may have different start dates. The first incoming class is being onboarded in July. PwC hasn't determined specific start dates, the company added. 

About 200 of this year's interns are business school students who would follow a different curriculum than the rest of the students, he said. Some MBA internships might not be virtual, depending on how the country opens up by July. 

Instead of working directly with clients, this summer's business school interns will focus on learning digital skills, analyzing company case studies, and networking with leaders at the firm.

If you have a tip about a consulting firm that you'd like to share with Business Insider, please email Weng Cheong at wcheong@businessinsider.com





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