Peninsula Business Services, Bain & Company, Newton Europe, McKinsey & Company and Thomas International are according to employees the five best UK employers in the area of finance and consulting. The top 30 includes seven other consultancies.
Every year career platform Glassdoor and the FT conduct research into the employership of UK companies. The ‘finance and consulting’ ranking includes firms that specialise in management consulting, financial analytics and research, financial transaction processing, insurance, investment banking, asset management and lending. The list was created by analysing the tens of thousands of anonymous reviews left on Glassdoor.com (based on a five point scale) by people in the UK for their employers, with those with fewer than 30 reviews excluded.
Peninsula Business Services, a Manchester headquartered firm that specialises in HR advisory and health & safety consulting, garnered the top rank, endorsed by employees for its sound management, strong benefits, excellent career development and training opportunities as well as its efforts to make the workplace fun and rewarding. Bain & Company, a US strategy consulting firm, came in second, a position which it also holds across Europe according to another survey, trailing just McKinsey & Company, arguably its largest rivals in its field. In the Glassdoor ranking McKinsey ranks 4th, with Newton Europe in third position, a consultancy with three offices globally – in Oxfordshire, Amsterdam and New York. The top five is completed by Thomas International, a firm that focuses on the people assessment industry.
Oliver Wyman, the management consulting unit of Marsh & McLennan Companies – the parent of also Mercer, NERA Economic Consulting, Guy Carpenter and Marsh – ranks 6th on the list, followed by GE Capital, the first finance company on the list, highlighting the consulting industry’s dominance in the top of the ranking when it comes to workplace satisfaction. Three other big names in the financial sector complete the top 10: US investment banking giant Goldman Sachs, Credit Suisse and Macquarie Group.
The top 20 includes mainly finance companies, with Deloitte, JDX Consulting (a company that provides advisory and flexible resourcing to financial services clients) and Accenture the three representatives from the advisory landscape. Three other business advisory firms have made the top 30 cut – Big Four giant EY, ranked 21st, customer experience specialist Dunnhumby and HR services firm Towers Watson.
Finance versus consulting
Comparing to the period before the crisis, financials have across the board lost some of their workplace appeal, reveals the ranking. The financial crisis and a host of scandals have had an impact on workplace pride and satisfaction, say the researchers, also making it much more difficult for banks and companies that serve the financial sector to attract top quality recruits. The consulting industry to the contrary has over the past years put more of an effort into elevating its workplace culture, by embracing more flexible and inclusive HR policies, with success, as demonstrated by this year’s Glassdoor and FT ranking and a host of other recognitions recently also featured by Consultancy.uk*.
Independent of the industry, the researchers have unravelled that good employership has a clear link with company performance. “Our analysis found that if investors had bought shares in Glassdoor’s 50 ‘Best Places to Work’ in 2009 and held them until the end of 2014, they would have outperformed the S&P 500 by 116%.” Their message is clear: there is a meaningful economic link between employee satisfaction and stock market performance, and those who ignore the importance of corporate culture may be doing so at the expense of their companies’ financial detriment.
Best consultancy rankings
Consultancy.uk recently featured similar ‘best-of’ rankings for UK employers. At an undergraduate level, 13 consultancies made a top 100 published by Universum, while 14 advisories made the top 100 released by RateMyPlacement. At a graduate level, 14 consulting firms have made The Times ‘Top 100 Graduate Employers’ list, including the Big 4 and top three strategy firms, with PwC even taking top spot for the twelfth year in a row. In the case of school leavers EY ranks first, with in total 14 consulting firms making the top 60 cut.