Are you wondering what kind of support you will get upon entering Capgemini’s Management Consultant graduate scheme? Do you want to find out what is done to help you settle into the Consultant Development Community (CDC) or even the wider Capgemini Consulting community?The support we as graduates get as part of the CDC programme is an extremely valuable asset – it allows us to grow both on a professional and personal level, become successful consultants and better represent the company on client site! It also provides an exciting social environment to enjoy.
There are several formal and informal support mechanisms that CDCers can all benefit from.
Starting off with the formal support mechanisms, we have access to the CDC Manager, who oversees the entire programme. The CDC manager is very approachable should you have any specific query to raise, or seek some advice with regards to your career choices. The CDC Manager knows all the graduates from selecting and observing them at the Assessment Centers. Post hire she spends time with all the graduates through one to one meetings to better understand individual aspirations and is always available to provide advice when needed.
Secondly, each graduate is assigned a counsellor, who sits within the same practice and is an experienced consultant. Having this contact, who understands how the company and the performance review process works, is extremely useful. Graduates don’t feel lost or daunted by the performance reviews and setting objectives which means they can focus all their attention on the real job at hand. In my case, my counsellor is a Principal and has proven to be a great support in terms of how to best manage feedback and improve upon it, based on his own experience and insights. Having this support from the beginning is very encouraging.
On top of these formal support mechanisms, there are also more informal ones.
Every CDCer is assigned a buddy who is the first person to provide you with information about any queries you might have and most likely the first one you will meet in person – in some cases even before your official start date. The CDC buddy is a more experienced CDCer who really helps you settle in and gives you a friendly face to turn to so you don’t feel lost at the start. Things you can address with him/ her range from where to live, what internal work to get involved in, what places to go to for food during lunch break right through to what all these new acronyms stand for!
Also within the CDC, we have four Chapters, which group together CDCers from different intakes to further reinforce the community aspect of the programme. Think of it as equivalents to Harry Potter houses! These Chapters are headed by a more senior consultant who you can also turn to for advice. They organise various social gatherings (such as the CDC Quarterly half day meetings, monthly events and get togethers in the form of brunches, karaoke evenings or movie nights) which are a good starting point to build your network, particularly if you are new to London – or the UK!
Finally, as part of the CDC, we also have over 20 days to spend on training over the two years duration of the programme. This helps us gain useful insights into consulting skills and behaviours, as well as developing strong communication skills – all of which are key on assignments to enable us to perform at our very best in front of the client.
So to conclude, with all these support structures in place, there is always someone to help you when need it! Just remember: there is no such thing as a stupid question...