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Boeing System Integration Engineer or Accenture Consulting Analyst

rossnguyenrossnguyen Posts: 4Registered User New Member
Hi there,

It's time for me to make some tough decision for my career.

I have gotten a job with Boeing as a System Integration Engineer to work on the NASA space station project. Also, I made it to the 3rd round interview for Accenture entry-level consulting analyst position (either IT or Management depends on my interviews with the executives). I am 99% sure that i will get the job with Accenture. About compensation, Boeing broke over the ceiling this year and offered about $15k higher than typical entry level consulting job.

My target in the next 5yrs is to get a good MBA and transition into Management (either in an executive path at a corporate or in an associate level at MBB). I mention management here as the kind of jobs in which I would take on higher responsibility to lead projects and manage people strategically on the macro scale. I love true human communication and enjoy dealing with people much more than punching numbers. Don't get me wrong here; i was trained as an engineer and am very comfortable with data scrutiny and processing. But my passion in life is to become an influential and accomplished person that is capable of inspiring people with my work and my taking charge of my life. So, a job that involves strategic planning and human management fits better with my interest and my purpose of life.

I graduated with an M.S. from hardcore engineering schools in the West. However, I have to be realistic that my chance getting into HBS is slim since i may not be able to establish a network with HBS graduates while working at Boeing or Accenture. So, my B-School targets are Stanford GSB, Berkeley Hass, MIT Sloan, Kellog, Chicago Booth, Columbia, and Tuck.

With that said, I would love to hear your opinions on which job I should go with and what is my chance of getting into the above MBA program with that job?

Thank you!
Post edited by rossnguyen on

Replies to: Boeing System Integration Engineer or Accenture Consulting Analyst

  • sciencenerdsciencenerd Posts: 1,454Registered User Senior Member
    How are you so sure about that 99%?

    If you do get two offers I think I'd rather go with Accenture because working at Boeing will most likely lead to a more technical role or managerial role within technology.

    Consulting will probably better prepare you for business school.
  • soccerguy315soccerguy315 Posts: 6,628Registered User Senior Member
    consulting is probably the better role for what you want.

    that said, managers generally don't inspire people.

    sometimes they even just argue about inane things while the actual experts do the work (half joking)
  • intparentintparent Posts: 12,255Registered User Senior Member
    I would recommend the Boeing job. I worked for Accenture as an employee for about 10 years, then recently subcontracted for them for a few years. It is honestly full of type-A "stomp on anyone to get to the top" managers and partners (and I was a manager there... but I know what most of the people are like there).

    Plus, you will not do anything nearly as interesting as work on the space station at Accenture. You will work 80 hours a week to support selling the next mobile phone or mortgage to someone, and be on the road all the time (therefore not making contacts in your own home office that can help you later with finding other jobs or supporting you for promotions within your office). You may very well get stuck at some backwater client in an industry you don't care about, getting the crap kicked out of you daily by a client who is ****ed that they are paying your extremely high hourly rates.

    Honestly, I think a top business school would rather have someone with strong engineering work skills that they can train in business than a management or IT consultant.

    Now want me to tell you what I really think? :)
  • rossnguyenrossnguyen Posts: 4Registered User New Member
    Wow, sounds like we have a pretty diverse set of ideas. Let me elaborate a bit more about what I think. There is absolutely an X factor in the Boeing job that is unmatched by Accenture's. However, I am still hesitant because those people at Boeing are very engineering-focused, not as much business-minded as I am. What I am considering is that Accenture would get me to experience some sort of management in my first 2yrs while Boeing is more about hardcore engineering. I spoke to some senior managers (not executives) at Boeing, and only a few of them got an MBA, mostly part time and from lower tier regional schools. No doubt that they love and enjoy their jobs, but i feel somehow that throughout their whole time at Boeing, they lack of aspiration or ambition of a young graduate with high self esteem like me. I wonder how it is like at Accenture since I haven't spoken to many of them.

    So far I have seen that many qualified engineers at Boeing tend to apply for PhD programs over MBA's after 2 or 3 years. I realize that while I can work comfortably on engineering duties, it is not the environment where I can excel the most. With lack of MBA networking at Boeing, it may affect my chance getting into a top MBA program. My knowledge about Accenture Management Consulting is limited, so I raise the question here about its style and its placement to top MBA to ask for people's experience. Will it be simply help client install SAP or Oracle?
  • drake333drake333 Posts: 137Registered User Junior Member
    I pmed you for a specific question, I am a match participant for the Houston space sector as well. I need to decide by the 26th.

    As for your question, perhaps applying the the EO&T/financial service side would have been more appropriate. If you do decide to work for Boeing, they cap out funding for an mba, and if you want to go to 1st tier schools I suggest looking up online study. I suggest contacting your supervisor now and asking for availability and flexibility of your position to do work you are more interested in.

    I will be shooting for rice masters in engineering if I go work for Boeing. Or online study.
  • rossnguyenrossnguyen Posts: 4Registered User New Member
    Hi drake,

    I don't think it will matter which division you are in. Funding for MBA is only $15k/yr, and I sense some hesitance from managers to support employees' mba path. If you go for an m.s. in engineering, i believe they will give you full ride.

    To me, there is a big difference in values between a full time top 10 MBA program, and a part time online program. Since I want to develop myself more on the business side, I am afraid that i won't have strong enough support from Boeing managers to get into top mba programs. I will talk to them more about my vision and passion to see what they think.

    Anyway, if you need more time to make decision, you can shoot your manager an email to ask for it. They are reasonable and negotiable!
  • chriswchrisw Posts: 1,370Registered User Senior Member
    I tend to support going for Boeing. If, as you indicate, most Boeing folks are more focused on engineering, you give yourself an opportunity to differentiate yourself by being both a qualified engineer and a hopeful future manager. In terms of making contacts for business schools, as others have said, don't place too much emphasis on a perceived network you will gain from working at a large consulting firm. You may work at a large firm like Accenture, but you will work in small teams on your client projects.

    While business school is a great goal to have, the top b-schools have average matriculation ages in the mid to late 20s, so the reality is that it's rather likely for you to be on your second job before you even take your GMATs. With that in mind, Boeing gives you a hell of a great opportunity, and I lean toward thinking that the Boeing opportunity is better straight out of college than the Accenture one. That said, I'm friends with a few Accenture employees, and they do very much enjoy their jobs!
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