Top 10 hardest consulting jobs to fill for consultancy recruiters

13 November 2017

Consulting functions are becoming increasingly difficult to fill, thanks to increases in competition, skills shortages and uncertainty surrounding the UK’s fiscal future, following Brexit. As a result of the attractive labour market for consultants, many consultancy recruiters of agencies are struggling with finding the right candidates for outstanding positions. Technology and digital roles are the most demanding.

The UK’s £9 billion consulting sector is finding the recruitment of key talent increasingly difficult. Firms are constantly reworking their old hiring techniques in order to better court new talent, with a growing number of smaller competitors making competition for intake increasingly fierce.

According to data sourced by from global jobs board Indeed, 16.5% of consulting vacancies in the UK listed on the employment site are difficult to fill, remaining unoccupied for 60 days or more. Indeed's percentages are based on thousands of open consultant vacancies on the vacancy website, with the current tally standing at over 88,000. These range from jobs in the top segment of the market – strategy consulting and management consulting – to operational roles such as database consultant and SEO consultant. The vacancy review also includes internal consulting roles available within other organisations outside the consulting industry.


Analysis of Indeed’s figures shows that the following consultancy functions are the most difficult to recruit for, usually due to their high entry criteria. Predictably, the most qualified position of senior associate consultant is the one which is most often unfilled after 60 days, with 53.7% remaining open on Indeed after two months. The role is followed closely by senior technology consultant, with 52% of the listings for the specialist role remaining open beyond the 60 day mark. 

The 10 hardest consulting jobs to fill for consultancy recruiters

Technology is the most represented specialism on the list. In light of growing digitisation, the subject also relates to a majority of the roles in some capacity – particularly operations consultant, which is increasingly focused on the technological and digital overhaul of clients businesses – it is also present in the list twice. 37% of technology consultant positions were found to still be open after 60 days of posting. This is most likely because of the high level of specified qualification required for the role.

Specialism will have been a key factor behind a number of jobs being difficult to fill. With talent scarcity becoming an increasingly dominant problem on the human capital agenda, firms must compete with a growing number of rivals for a limited pool of skills. Human capital management consultants themselves are presently the subject of this gap, with 33% of roles going unfilled. 32% of education consultant roles meanwhile remained unoccupied following two months of searching, while the data also found that the same portion of senior energy consultant recruitment exercises were unsuccessful over the same period.

Consultancy in the UK

On top of the rise in competition making recruitment a slower process, the industry is currently bracing itself for the repercussions of Brexit. Although the impending split from the European Union is forecast to increase work for consultants in the short term, the industry is presently reliant on a large number of EU nationals to bolster its workforce. Should a dreaded ‘Hard Brexit’ lead to the tightening of borders, impacting on the free movement of top talent to Britain, the sector may be left vulnerable as it attempts to meet new demand without a ready supply of European professionals. Such is the concern among the industry that the Management Consulting Association joined twelve of its continental sister organisations in the signing of a letter, calling for the UK and EU to maintain market freedoms to prevent Britain’s professional services sector from losing business.

According to a recent report by Source Global Research, the uncertainty surrounding the UK consulting industry’s labour supply had led to it lagging behind the DACH region (Germany, Austria and Switzerland), as well as Australia and the United States, in terms of market attractiveness. “Such is London’s reliance on a flow of talent across its borders – one leader of a global strategy firm recently told us that ‘100%’ of internal applications for positions came from outside the UK – that any interruption to that flow is likely to have a significant impact,” says Source Global Research director Edward Haigh. presently lists over 300 vacancies along with a number of graduate schemes and internships, featuring jobs from the major consulting firms currently operating in Britain.

Related: Number of open business consulting jobs in the UK rises.

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Two consultancies among UK’s best office breakout spaces

05 April 2019

A pair of Bristol-based consulting firms have been recognized for having among the UK’s best office break areas. People Source Consulting and Ashville were marked out for their vibrant and fun spaces, which feature table games, picnic areas, and even beer.

With competition for talent in the UK continuing to heat up – as the nation continues to enjoy its highest employment rate since the 1970s – firms have been upping their game on multiple fronts to help attract the cream of the crop. In order to successfully court the best candidates, companies are not only taking into account pay and benefits, but are also working to lure potential employees to their firms with the promise of innovative and vibrant work spaces.

In late 2018, employment website Glassdoor announced ten offices had been named the coolest places to work in the UK. Among those lauded for their work in enriching the working day of their employees was Capco – the only consultancy to make the grade.

Two consultancies among UK’s best office breakout spaces

Now,, a leading games room specialist based in the UK, has announced the ten offices it believes have made the cut for its inaugural Office Breakout of the Year competition. The contest has pitted a diverse range of companies against one another to be named the best office-based breakout space that the UK has to offer. Research from recently revealed that 65% of workers would consider switching employers for a better working environment, making the appearance of two consultancies on the list especially important for their recruitment ambitions.

People Source Consulting – a recruitment business from Bristol – hosts a brightly lit and vibrant space, complete with faux grass and picnic benches, along with a well-stocked beverage fridge – alcohol appears to be an option – as well as an array of tabletop games, including pool. Ashville, an asset management consultancy also based in Bristol, meanwhile boasts a break room decked out with table football, a table tennis court and even arcade machines.

Two consultancies among UK’s best office breakout spaces

The other eight finalists exhibit offerings including swinging hammocks, scooters and a bizarre and brilliant variety of other features. The other nominees are accessplanit – a software business from Lancaster; Digital 22 – a marketing and design agency from Clitheroe; Roc Search – a tech and engineering recruitment specialist from Reading; Sales-i – a provider of sales analytics software from Solihull; SEC Group – an office fit out company from Stevenage; SLG Brands – a portfolio of beauty brands with a head office in Cheltenham; Zest Digital – a digital marketing agency from Oxford; and 16i – a digital design agency also from Cheltenham.

Andy Beresford, MD of, said, “According to recent reports, the UK is currently seeing record levels of employment, and while that might be a great statistic, the knock-on effect is that it’s becoming harder and harder to recruit top talent… Being named as a finalist gives those shortlisted businesses the opportunity to showcase how they go about delivering a better working environment for their employees, with some top effort evidently involved judging by what we’ve seen.”