Wander through one of (Monitor) Deloitte’s stunning Amsterdam offices—either The Edge, certified as one of the world’s most sustainable office building, or The Garage, an innovative workspace housed in a former Citroën garage—and you’ll find 7 HEC Paris MBA alumni hard at work. These consultants will soon be joined by 6 others, 4 of them recruits from the HEC Paris MBA’s Class of 2022, and 2 others MBA summer interns hoping to land that full-time offer.
What’s behind this Jouy-to-Amsterdam career pipeline? Its existence can be summed up with two words: Johann Matthai.
After accomplishing his own post-MBA triple jump from marketing to management consulting, Johann has made it his personal goal to shepherd as many outstanding HEC Paris MBA graduates as possible into Monitor Deloitte’s Amsterdam fold. Today, that branch of the consulting firm is among the MBA program’s top recruiters.
“When I entered the MBA program, I found my batch-mates incredibly inspiring,” explains Johann, an HEC Paris MBA Class of 2016 alumnus. “I was enthralled by the type of person who chooses HEC as their business school. My batch-mates were intelligent, with great personalities. They were exactly the type of people you want around you when you are still in the office at 9 pm working on a consulting project.”
Back in 2016, Johann was the first HEC Paris MBA graduate to join Monitor Deloitte’s Amsterdam office. By the following recruiting season, he had taken a leading role in their MBA recruitment program. Ever since, the mutually beneficial relationship that exists between Monitor and HEC Paris has flourished.
“We hired another HEC Paris MBA grad almost as a pilot, thinking, ‘Let’s see how another HEC recruit does’,” he says. “We haven’t looked back since. Year after year, HEC students have excelled in our program.”
These days, the number of HEC Paris graduates transitioning into management consulting is soaring. For the Class of 2020, 31 percent of students accepted post-MBA consulting positions. They received offers from the MBB giants, Tier 2 and boutique consulting firms, and from strategy departments within specific companies.
The HEC Paris MBA’s Consulting Club has 210 active members, 40% of whom are currently undergoing the club’s rigorous 3-month-long case-cracking training. At least three times per week, members meet one-to-one with another student to crack cases and receive feedback on their solutions. The club is also collecting data from everyone who has received full-time offers. With this information, they are able to advise students on best practices for securing consulting roles in regions throughout the world.
This rigorous preparation is what keeps Johann coming back. Though he has risen through the firm’s ranks to become a Senior Manager focused on customer strategy, he continues to lead MBA recruiting, actively for the Netherlands and passively for Monitor’s Spain and Switzerland offices. He and his team return to HEC Paris twice a year (with the exception of a few Covid-related pauses) to present their company, network with students, and interview the best among them for internships and full-time opportunities.
“HEC Paris has given me a lot,” Johann says. “A lot of my closest friends are from HEC and my time in Paris. In that sense, I feel a really strong connection with the school, and I always will.”
Spurred by the success of the MBAs, multiple MiM students have also applied to the firm, and today there’s also 5 MiM students from HEC Paris within Monitor’s ranks.
“It’s a two-way street,” Johann continues. “I will continue to come back as long as the candidates I’m interviewing are worth coming back for. And frankly, so far, every one of our HEC Paris MBA recruits has excelled.”