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The Highest Paying Boutique Consulting Firms

Here are the top 25 boutique consulting firms offering MBA graduates a starting salary of $160k or more

Mon Jan 22 2024

BusinessBecause
Boutique consulting firms are an enticing options for those looking for a career in consulting, offering MBA graduates lucrative salaries and hefty performance and signing bonuses. 

Boutique firms are smaller than the Big Three consulting firms of McKinsey, Bain, and Boston Consulting Group. They typically have close connections with local clients or a specific area of expertise. 

Consultants may specifically focus on telecommunications and the media industry, for example, or solely work with clients in the clean energy space. These companies are a good fit for MBA grads with an interest in consulting and a specific professional background or area of interest.

Here, we break down the 25 highest paying boutique consulting firms, based on compensation data for MBAs from Management Consulted

All the firms in this list offer MBAs a base starting salary of $160,000 or more.


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Boutique Consulting Firms With The Highest MBA Salaries


25. Compass Lexecon

Compass Lexecon is a boutique consulting firm focusing on economic consulting for law firms, corporations, and governments. It pays incoming MBA hires a base salary of up to $160,000.


24. Roland Berger Strategy Consultants

International management consultancy, Roland Berger, is based in Munich and works with a wide range of clients across the globe. It’s one of the world’s leading strategy consulting firms. 

Roland Berger pays incoming MBA hires a base salary of $160,000, with a performance bonus of up to $32,000. There is also a signing bonus of $35,000.


23. Innosight (Acquired by Huron) 

Innosight was founded in 2000 by Clayton Christensen, a senior Harvard Business School professor, and Mark W. Johnson, an HBS alum. The firm specializes in growth strategy. 

Offering highly competitive earning potential with large bonuses, Innosight base packages begin at $165,000 for new hires, with the possibility to earn a performance bonus of up to $57,750 and a signing bonus of $35,000. 


22. IBM Global Business Services/IBM Consulting 

From interactive experience and digital strategy to cloud application innovation, mutinational company, IBM, focuses on technology consulting for a range of leading clients. 

IBM MBA consultants can expect a starting base salary of up to $165,000 after being hired, with a signing bonus of $35,000 and performance bonuses up to $16k. 


21. Tata Consultancy Services 

Tata Consultancy Services (TCS) is an Indian multinational consulting firm utilizing technology to offer IT services, consulting, and business solutions. It operates across more than 40 countries. 

The company is one of the highest paying boutique consulting firms and pays MBA consultants a starting base salary of $165,000, with a performance bonus of up to $30,000, and a signing bonus of $25,000.


READ: What Does A Management Consultant Do?  

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20. The Chartis Group

The Chartis Group is the leading healthcare advisory firm in the US. It offers services to healthcare providers, as well as payers, health services, investors, and technology companies. 

The company pays a base salary of $166,400 to MBA hires, alongside a performance bonus of up to $32,000. It also provides a $25k signing bonus, rising to $30k for interns who return to take on a full-time role. 


19. Maine Point 

A consultancy that specializes in supply chain services, Maine Point uses data analytics and simulation to offer tailored consultancy services to a range of corporate clients. 

Working for the company as an MBA hire earns you a base salary of $170,000, while you’ll also gain a 0.5% of profits from every project you work on. 


18. Health Advances LLC 

A consulting firm specializing in science, technology, and business strategy, Health Advances works with healthcare clients to provide solutions across technologies, products, and services. 

Health Advances pays MBA hires a base salary of $170,000, with performance bonuses reaching $42,500, and signing bonuses of $10,000. 


17. Simon-Kucher & Partners 

If strategy, marketing, pricing, and sales consulting is what you’re after, then Simon-Kucher & Partners could be the boutique consulting company for you. 

The company is one of the highest paying boutique consulting firms and pays MBA consultants a starting base salary of $170,000, with a performance bonus of up to $40,800, and a signing bonus of $25,000.


16. Altman Solon

Altman Solon is the world’s largest boutique consulting company to focus exclusively on Telecoms, Media, and Technology (TMT).

It pays incoming MBA hires a base salary of $170,000, with a performance bonus of up to $42,500, and a signing bonus of $30,000. 


READ: 7 Management Consultant Skills That Are Essential In The Industry

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15. Slalom Consulting

Slalom Consulting is a global consulting firm that provides business, strategy, and technology services to clients in the US, Europe, and the Asia Pacific region. The firm has a huge head count, employing more than 12,000 people and regularly hiring MBA graduates. 

Slalom MBA consultants can earn a huge $175,000 in base salary. 


14. ZS Associates 

Consulting, software, and technology are the crux of the work at boutique consulting company, ZS Associates. As one of the highest paying boutique consulting firms, ZS pays MBA hires a starting base salary of $175,000, but that’s not the only lucrative appeal of a consulting contract with the company.

There is also a performance bonus of up to $30,000, a signing bonus of $30,000, and relocation pay of up to $5,000. MBA interns who return for full-time roles are also given a second year MBA tuition reimbursement.


13. Accenture Strategy

Looking for a career in business strategy, technology strategy, or operations strategy? Accenture Strategy could be the boutique consulting company for you.

MBAs joining the firm can expect a base salary of $175,000. All first years out of an MBA can also expect a performance bonus of up to $40,000, with top performers able to add $15,000 on top of that.

If that’s not enough, there is also a signing bonus of $35,000, with interns returning for full-time positions offered an extra $17,500 early sign on bonus.


12. Alvarez & Marsal 

Alvarez & Marsal (A&M) works with many of the world’s largest businesses to navigate business challenges. With offices located across 31 countries, A&M provides turnaround management and performance improvement advice. 

It’s one of the highest paying boutique consulting firms, paying MBA hires a starting base salary of $175,000. For new hires there is also a huge performance bonus on offer of up to $87,500—the most among the boutique consultancies—and signing bonuses of $25k. 


11. Partners In Performance 

A management consultancy that’s rapidly growing, Partners In Performance pays its consulting MBA hires $180,000. Based out of Sydney, Australia, the firm often focuses on helping clients through cost and revenue improvements. 


READ: How To Get Hired By The Big Three Consulting Firms

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© Boston Consulting Group Facebook


10. DGCpartners 

DGCpartners is a technology and management consulting firm with a focus in three key areas. The firm helps ensure companies sustainably implement business and IT transformation; readiness and resilience; and program and project management.

DGC also pays incoming MBA hires a huge $180,000, that's just $10k short of the Big Three consulting firms. 


9. FTI Consulting

Based out of Washington DC, FTI Consulting is a business consultancy firm with a particular focus on financial and economic consulting. Services range from corporate finance and restructuring to technology and communications. 

FTI is one of a number of firms on this list to offer base salaries of $180,000 to new MBA hires. However, the firm also bolsters that compensations with a performance bonus of up to $40,250, and a signing bonus reaching $30,000. 


8. OC&C Strategy Consultants

OC&C Strategy Consultants focuses on an array of industries, from consumer goods and telecommunications, media, and technology (TMT); to leisure, retail, and analytics.

The company is one of the highest paying boutique consulting firms when an incoming MBA’s total compensation is added together. OC&C pays MBA hires a base salary of $180,000, with a huge performance bonus of up to $60,000, and a signing bonus of $25,000. It also pays a relocation fee of up to $7,500.


7. Galt & Company

Galt & Company is a boutique consulting firm that builds strategies and organizational capabilities for firms to improve and sustain superior shareholder value. It pays MBA hires a starting base salary of $180,000. 

Consultants at Galt & Company benefit from an impressive bonus scheme. Performance bonuses come in at a minimum of $60k, while they are uncapped meaning you could go on to earn substantially more. 


6. Alix Partners 

Quick solutions for clients is at the heart of AlixPartners work. The company’s QuickStrike® methodology identifies issues affecting a company’s performance, looks at the available options, and plans a solution in a matter of weeks, 

That requires smart MBA minds, which is likely part of the reason starting base salaries amount to $180,000, with a performance bonus starting at a minimum of $60,000. Like Galt & Company, Alix Partners doesn’t cap bonuses. The company also offers a signing bonus of $35,000, rising to $40,000 for returning interns. 


READ: 10 Best MBAs For Consulting Careers In 2024

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5. L.E.K. Consulting 

LEK Consulting is a British management consulting firm that focuses primarily on corporate strategy, mergers and acquisitions, and operations. MBA hires at LEK can expect to earn a high base salary of $185,000, almost at the level of the MBB firms. 

That salary comes with a performance bonus of up to $25,000, MBAs at LEK can also expect a signing bonus of $30,000. 


4. EPAM

A leading digital transformation services provider, EPAM specializes in digital and physical product development as well as digital platform engineering services. 

EPAM offers its MBA hires impressive base salaries of $186,000, while new hires also gain a signing bonus of $35,000. 


Top 3 


 While all of the boutique consulting firms here offer high starting salaries, three firms stand out as the highest paying boutique consulting firms...


3. Kearney 

Kearney works with over three-quarters of the Fortune Global 500, as well as governmental and non-profit organizations. The company is one of the highest paying boutique consulting firms and pays MBA hires a starting base salary of $188,000. 

If that wasn’t enough, there is also a huge performance bonus reaching as high as $65,800, and a signing bonus of up to $25,000. Returning interns receive an extra $10,000 on top of their signing bonus. 


2. Oliver Wyman

US-based financial services management consulting firm, Oliver Wyman, offers clients its specialist expertise in operations, strategy, organization transformation, and risk management. It currently has more than 70 offices across 30 countries. 

Oliver Wyman pays incoming MBA hires a base salary of $190,000, with a performance bonus of up to $36,100. New hires can also access a signing bonus of up to $30k, while if you sign on early with the company you can also gain an extra $15,000 in bonuses. 


1. Analysis Group

One of just two boutique consultancies to offer salaries of $190,000, Analysis Group focuses on economic, financial, and strategy consulting for law firms, corporations, and government agencies. 

Working for the company as an MBA hire will see you earn a base salary of $190,000, at a similar level to the base salaries available at the big three consulting firms. You’ll also earn a large performance bonus of up to $47,500, and a signing bonus of $45,000, bringing the total above $280k.


Management Consulted’s list of the highest paying boutique consulting firms makes one thing clear: life as an MBA consultant goes way beyond the traditional route into the big three.

If you’re after a highly-paid, performance-driven career, that also allows you to focus on specific areas of expertise or interest, then a career as a consultant at a boutique consulting company is the one for you.


Best boutique consulting firms for compensation



Read more about Consulting Salaries For MBA & Master’s Graduates


The salary figures in this article are for those joining management consulting positions in 2024. The data was sourced by ManagementConsulted from interview prep clients who received written job offers.

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