Ernst And Young Interview Case Study

How would you combine two companies to realize cost synergies?

Roadmap – Start with financials
• Profit
• Revenue (P x Q)
• Elasticity
• Positioning
• Increase Market Share
• Market Growth
• New Market
• Costs (VC x Q + FC)
Variable Costs
• Materials
• Labor
• Service
Fixed Costs (3 P’s: People, Places, Processes)
• Machinery
• Overhead
• Distribution

Or use Value Chain to determine costs (work your way down through each stage of operations)
o Purchasing / Raw materials
o Machine usage
o Labor/ assembly
o Packaging
o Distribution
o Advertising and Sales
o Customer Services
o (+Corporate overhead, R&D, …)

Questions to ask during case:
• Is realizing synergies your only objective?
• Tell me more about their processes
• What are the big ticket items under costs?
• Do they use the same type of labor in the target company
• Can I have a moment to gather my thoughts?
• Identify overlap and do variance analysis
• There is lots of overlap in back office and labor (big number synergies), but not in raw materials
• Impact effort matrix to determine what to do first
• The way I would do this is by X
• Don’t be callus about staff reductions

Interview Candidate on Feb 24, 2015


I applied online. The process took 2+ months. I interviewed at EY (Houston, TX) in September 2017.


Got an email from HR requesting a phone interview the next day after I applied. Had a 20 min screening call with HR about 2 weeks later. The questions were: walk me through your experience, a few questions here and there with some clarifications. Went positive, got an immediate feedback in the end of the call that a second interview would be arranged shortly, which was great. Sent a follow up thank you note, no reply. After about two weeks followed up with HR admin who scheduled the first interview asking about the 2nd interview, eventually got response and had a phone interview on a bout 2 day notice, that was 3 weeks after the screening call. The phone interview was all behavioral + Q&A in the end. Took about 45 min. There were about 7-8 behavioral questions testing different areas of competency. The interviewer was giving feedback to every answer such as "excellent" or "uhhmm and what did you learn from that" which was nice in the absence of body language cues. Main lesson learned: don't just tell a "success story", make sure your prepared success story is relevant to the job in question and showcases how great you'd be in the job. This could be a challenge if you are changing industries, but there you go - do your homework, be clear, communication competency is a key for a management consultant. In the end I asked if it's possible to share feedback - so I could address any issues on the spot, the answer was no and good luck. Never heard back from the company since - and mind you I have a pretty stellar CV, so this was just rude. 3 months later job status got updated to "Inactive" & "Completed", "Withdraw" button disappeared - that's the way of them letting you know you are not selected.

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EY 2018-01-12 15:14 PST

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