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Overview

Introduction

Kaiser Associates is a global boutique with deep expertise across a diversified portfolio of practices. The firm has grown substantially since its 1981 inception—to the point that it spun off its healthcare practice into subsidiary Kx Advisors. The firm’s global reach, combined with its boutique size, allows for lots of international mobility while forming and maintaining close-knit connections with colleagues from different offices and backgrounds.

Company Stats


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Employer Type


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Size


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Featured Rankings

Vault Consulting 50...


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Major Departments/Practice Areas

Consumer & Retail...


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Major Office Locations

Washington, DC (Global HQ)...


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Employment Contact

Jeannine Donnelly - Director of Human Resources...

Firsthand Findings

 

Kaiser Associates continues to forge a path for itself as a boutique on the rise, occupying a unique niche between traditional strategy firms and market research firms. Distinguished by its combination of custom primary research with strategy and innovation, Kaiser’s client roster of Fortune 500 companies have come to consider the firm a trusted ally.

Those deep relationships position the firm for continued success, despite the economic uncertainty triggered by the Covid-19 pandemic. The firm rebounded from much of the turbulence that shook the industry in early 2020, maintaining its client relationships, instilling a sense of confidence and optimism for a post-pandemic world, and delivering its strongest-ever Q3 and Q4.

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About the Company

Founded in 1981, Kaiser Associates is a global strategy consulting firm with offices in Washington DC, London, São Paulo, and Hong Kong.

Kaiser Associates’ client base is equally global.  Its selective and elite client base includes 8 of 2020 Fortune’s Global 50 Most Admired as well as leading private equity firms and U.S. government entities.

Kaiser Associates offers employees a distinctive consulting experience that combines the client prestige and diverse opportunity of a large firm with the close-knit community of a small firm. With support from senior leadership and an entrepreneurial culture, consultants assume responsibility beyond age and tenure, affording accelerated development and stretch opportunities. 

In recent years, Kaiser Associates has increas...

Employee Reviews


  • “Culture is key…Kaiser has a firm culture that a large consulting firm couldn't dream of cultivating. The in-office culture attracts top talent, and gets them to stay well past the average burnout period of other firms.”
  • “Kaiser is a great place to work. You will make amazing friends and learn more in 6 months than you thought possible. We work with some of the biggest clients in major industries, and consistently challenge each other to do better.”
  • “You'll get a wide variety of experience and have the opportunity to work with some of the world's top companies. Even with the wide variety of experiences and exposure, you'll still feel like an integral part of the firm.”
  • “This is an excellent workplace on par with industry leaders despite boutique status, particularly in early responsibility and depth of experiences. it is definitely worth applying here alongside other firms, as the experience is ultimately very similar - minus the weekly travel.”
  • “Kaiser Associates is filled with talented, dedicated individuals who are deeply invested in delivering results for our clients, collaborating across practice areas, and building one another's personal and professional capabilities.”
  • “Consultants who are genuinely nice and down to earth - no chip on their shoulder.”
  • “The QoL is quite good considering hours and vacation time, and there is almost no travel time, which is quite nice. Taking time off is sometimes a bit of a hassle, as it needs to be done a few weeks in advance and can be denied if it's short notice. Overall, however, you are likely free to distribute your work so you can make evening engagements.”
  • “Hours vary by project type and practice area, but in general are very manageable. Travel is usually only for periodic client updates and are not strenuous or superfluous.”
  • “Kaiser has an awesome office culture and low travel [pre-Covid-19] - both really appealing things about working here. The only firm I know of where you can do interesting work for Fortune 100 companies without traveling every week.”
  • “There is a committee at Kaiser to encourage wellness that puts on events a few times each quarter. Additionally, we have free access to mental health counseling and free gym access. That said, I think Kaiser could still do a better job to promote wellness.”
  • “Kaiser receives a fairly competitive amount of vacation time that increases based on your length of service at the firm. Management is encouraging of taking time off, but asks that advance notice be given and shared with team at least a month in advance. Depending on client deliverables, vacation may or may not be honored, but you are able to use the date(s) at a later time.”
  • “Kaiser employees receive 15 days of PTO each year, with three additional personal days. The firm asks that employees request vacation time with four weeks' notice to enable teams to plan appropriately. Management encourages employees to use their time, but if they don't, employees have the option of rolling over unused time into Q1 of the following year.”
  • “While Kaiser provides generous compensation for a boutique firm, take-home pay lags MBB and big four firms by a relatively small percentage. However, promotion timelines can be faster, helping to offset this effect.”
  • “While Kaiser's pay may be slightly below average for leading strategy firms, promotions tend to happen more quickly than at other firms allowing for quick salary progression. Additionally, bonuses are fairly standard with most of the bonus stemming from individual performance rather than firm performance. Additionally, expense accounts are generous allowing for team/practice bonding events as well as regular food delivery when working late.”
  • “Salary benchmarking is conducted on a regular basis and pay is in line with competitors. Salary progression, similarly to promotions, happens quickly at Kaiser. Also, all salaries are transparent for each level at Kaiser, ensuring pay equality.”
  • “Kaiser has competitive pay among entry level employees. I particularly like the 401K matching, opportunity for bonus, and insurance benefits. I also think we receive a competitive and fair number of days off. We are also recognized in other ways, such as lunch during firm meetings, being able to Uber home after 9 pm, and ordering dinner after 7 pm which make long hours palatable.”
  • “Kaiser pays everyone who is at the same level the same base pay, and then the bonus can vary individually based on performance. This is great for a lot of reasons because it reduces the stress that your friend makes more or less than you even though you started together. It also means we don't need to worry about males / females making more than one another. The downside is that at times you wish you made more than your peer (if you're a higher performer than they are), but that usually fixes itself by receiving a faster promotion to the next level.”
  • “The bonus structure is nice. We're eligible for a bonus every six months instead of yearly. I like having the bonus period broken up.”
  • “As a boutique firm, developing relationships with people in different practices is easy, and you have scope to pick out the type of projects that you prefer. Conversely, as a smaller firm the training is mostly informal and perhaps not as thorough as larger consulting firms.”
  • “Great mentorship, a lot of face time with partners, abundance of stretch opportunities you can seek out to accelerate your development.”
  • “High level of client exposure and engagement responsibility even at analyst role. Top performers are able to progress rapidly within the firm.”
  • “As a small firm with unusually wide breadth, Kaiser offers extensive opportunities to dabble in multiple industries and teams. While the lack of formalization can be frustrating, there's also tremendous opportunity to take on accelerated leadership and project management.”
  • “Firm provides significant autonomy and rapid promotion opportunities to employees who demonstrate initiative and prove themselves highly capable. Combination of small team, interesting strategy engagements and ability to work across industry practices creates rapid development and learning. The firm also has targeted formal training (hard and soft skills) and use the Kubicle platform to supplement with self-learning. Employees tend to leave for top business schools or interesting industry jobs.”
  • “For a boutique firm, Kaiser does an excellent job providing training opportunities to staff (both formal and informal) and works to incorporate issues of diversity into everyday work discussions. Our promotion process is very rapid, with the firm providing a lot of responsibilities to more junior staff - which enables rapid development opportunities. Lastly, the culture is a key differentiator - as folks at Kaiser are highly invested in the success of one another.”
  • “At Kaiser, we are extremely proud of our gender diversity. We are led by an incredible female CEO, and that equality of opportunity and commitment to excellence in diversity filters down through each level of staff.”
  • “Kaiser pays attention to hiring women and people with a diverse background across their offices, and as the gender balance at a higher management level is quite good, I'd like to assume that the promotion opportunities are likely equal.”
  • “Kaiser's diversity is definitely getting better…While our HR and Ops team is really improving its diversity, the consulting side could use some more focus on this area. We have a great recruiting lead who is making this a priority so hopefully, we see some changes in the near future.”
  • “Kaiser is very transparent about equal pay and equal promotion opportunities across all employees, regardless of gender, race, or other factors. Kaiser is a women-owned business (~51% owned by women), which demonstrates its commitment to diversity and inclusion. ”
  • “I am pleased with the number of women in leadership. In my time at the firm, I have seen more women receive promotions (at all levels) than men, suggesting they are being given equal consideration.”
  • “Kaiser's compensation structure is standard across the board per level, regardless of their gender or ethnicity. Similarly, Kaiser's promotion process has been set up to reward and recognize employees who have received high marks on their project and performance reviews.”
  • “As a small firm, Kaiser is extremely agile and adaptive. Leadership is consistently thinking about new types of projects they can sell, and new clients to chase. Even with the Covid-19 challenges facing the business world, I am very optimistic that Kaiser will survive and find a way to deliver even greater insights to clients during this period.”
  • “As we are in the middle of the COVID situation, it is impossible to say. In February [2020] our business outlook would have looked extremely positive, but right now, like many consulting firms, we are in a precarious position.”
  • “Employee morale has remained high throughout the pandemic, and business is going well. We are consistently hiring new talent and signing new projects as well as gaining new clients, despite global uncertainty.”
  • “While COVID-19 creates uncertainty within the consulting industry right now generally, Kaiser is a small firm that I believe will easily adapt to new circumstances. We have more flexibility to pivot or business model than a larger firm.”
  • “Very strong relationships with longtime clients that will allow us to weather the coronavirus storm in a way that other small firms may not be able to. Tech practice seems poised to explode with new business in the next year or so. Financial Services is strong and showing no signs of slowing down. Industrials on the up and up too.”
  • “Kaiser is set up for success in the coming months - our innovative planning allows us to connect with new clients, especially in the midst of a pandemic.”

Why Work Here


Kaiser’s consultants are at the core of a diverse and entrepreneurial community that encourages accelerated development and stretch opportunities. We offer all the  benefits of an established 40-year-old strategy consultancy with access to top-tier professionals and elite client relationships.

By both challenging and supporting team members, Kaiser fosters an environment that enables for you to grow quickly and create impact from day one as you deliver solutions  to complex challenges of leading businesses and government entities.  

Kaiser is a great launching pad for your career – whether that’s here or elsewhere. Our alumni have gone on to top graduate programs; fast-track roles in leading industry corporations and government entities; prestigious private equity and venture capital  firms; and become entrepreneurs/founded their own companies!

Getting Hired Here


  • “Kaiser's interview process has three stages- an initial screening phone interview which includes 30 minutes of behavioral questions and 30 minutes of a case, then a written and timed case, then a super day with two cases, one VP interview, and one candidate lunch. Kaiser seeks candidates that are self-directed go-getters. Curious people who take initiative do really well here. "”
  • “The case interview process is pretty standard: typically a phone screen, a written interview, and a super day. The ideal Kaiser candidate is friendly, demonstrates an excellent work ethic, knows a lot about Kaiser, and understands our value prop. As a small firm that really cares about culture, we want people who want us!”
  • “Three part interview process generally (screening call with mini-case, written case, super day with 3-4 interviews). The ideal candidate is someone that is a creative problem solver, strong writer, and team player. Also, show a strong level of analytical savvy and comfort engaging with senior business leaders.”
  • “We are seeking self-starters with strong intellectual curiosity and initiative. We want people who are agile in every sense of the word – comfortable making things happen in an entrepreneurial environment.”
  • “For entry-level candidates we are primarily looking for candidates with a strong academic track record, followed by demonstrated interest in the industry / interesting work experience in CV screening. In the interview process we are looking for people that perform well in the case study (succinct, clearly outlined responses that do not necessarily stick to a pre-learnt case study structure) and that speak well in general interview. For experienced candidates we are looking for those with relevant experience to the practice (ideally with experience at another consulting firm) and expect them to perform very strongly in the case. The process is overall smooth and clear for candidates, though recent changes to recruitment personnel meant there were some candidates that were not kept up to date with the progress of their application over the last year.”
  • “Kaiser seeks top students from elite institutions. We begin the recruiting process with on-campus info sessions and interviews, and use a super day model to interview our very high volume of applicants.”
  • “Phone screens are generally classic market sizing questions. Second round interviews are written cases requiring interviewees to synthesize information from three sources. Final round cases are profit optimization cases.”
  • “Each phone interview includes a market sizing mini-case interview, there's a written case and the final interview includes two cases. One is more qualitative and one is more quantitative.”
  • “They ask about a time where you had to solve a life-problem on the spot and explain the troubleshooting process. Another is something that you have most improved on over the last couple of years and are now proud of.”
  • “We run case interviews based on decks containing market insights...questions revolve around what the client should do in the hypothetical situation described by the data.”
  • “'Pitch me a stock.' Our cases reflect our actual industry verticals, such as consumer goods or industrials. They are pretty typical cases, but can be on the longer side as they are scheduled for an hour (for super days).”
  • “Sizing markets, recommending distribution strategies, and other pure strategy cases.”

Perks & Benefits