What Deloitte Seeks In An MBA Hire

Patty Pogemiller

Patty Pogemiller


What do you look for in a resume and background that many candidates might not consider? 

Anytime a candidate is preparing their resume, it helps to understand what the employer does. Deloitte is all about client services. We’re working with clients to help them to navigate the increasingly complex environment that they’re operating in. And that can be dealing with regulation, technology and innovation, changing labor markets, and so on.

We’re looking for professionals who have the confidence, skills, and experiences that they can bring to bear to develop creative, innovative solutions to solve these complex challenges. To do that, we’re looking for things in their resume and background that demonstrate leadership abilities, that they’re able to think analytically, solve problems, that they possess outstanding, outstanding communication skills. Also, that they can collaborate and work effectively in diverse teams because that’s how we work.

We’re looking for a demonstrated track record of exceptional leadership. It doesn’t have to be the typical business clubs or anything like that. It is anything where they have really gotten into it and demonstrated leadership in what they’re doing, that they are bringing unique experiences to the table. The non-traditional backgrounds are given as much of a look as traditional backgrounds [at Deloitte].

We’re looking for people who go the extra mile to really demonstrate interest in Deloitte. They want to get to know the firm. There’s nothing worse than [candidates] showing up and not really knowing what we do, with only a cursory understanding of it.

We like people who are humble, likable, and down-to-earth, but they also need to be confident, engaging, and charismatic. They also need to be what we call “client ready” – where they’re able to walk into a room and be perceived as knowledgeable and a future leader. We’re looking for good listening and decision-making skills, people who are ambitious and entrepreneurial.

How does that show up on a resume? Not all of that [does]. Some must come through in an interview. Things that show up on the resume are demonstrated leadership, the fact that they have unique experiences, and an entrepreneurial spirit. So when they’re thinking about how to position their own experiences, they need to be thinking about what an employer might be looking for, which is something a little different that would distinguish them from the next person.

What types of clubs or extracurriculars do you see as particularly valuable [for MBAs]?

It’s not that we find any particular club better than another. It’s just that they’re involved and contributing in a meaningful way, demonstrating their leadership or other critical skills. We need to know that they’re taking advantage of all the opportunities that are available on campus. It doesn’t matter what their interests are or what the club is, just that they’re passionate about something and getting involved.

The other thing is, one of the key tenets of Deloitte centers around community service, so anything that’s in that vein, leadership or business skill sets that they’re learning in school where they’re helping a non-profit organization…those are of interest to us as well.

The point is, it doesn’t matter what it is. But whatever it is, be passionate about it and get involved and contribute in a meaningful way. 

What kinds of skills does Deloitte anticipate needing in the coming years that you may not possess enough of now (languages, technical skills, etc.)? 

What’s concerning to us right now is the whole area of STEM skills. This is the skill set that is of interest to us, mainly for our technology consulting practice. As a consulting organization, we have technology needs in all of our businesses. That, in conjunction with our MBA needs, will be really critical to us.

We’re really looking for ways to encourage involvement in STEM fields and how we can make an impact there. We’re concerned about not so much the skills as much as the diversity in terms of women in technology.

I think the skill set we anticipate needing will come out of this STEM environment. The other thing is, while MBAs with a broad background are interesting and fun, [we also need] those with technology backgrounds as well as specific industry knowledge in health care, client services, analytics, and human capital. Those are all of interest to us.   

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