Based in Chicago, IL, Navigant Consulting specializes in helping companies that are facing the challenges of uncertainty, risk, distress and significant change.

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This time of year, many of the entry-level consulting jobs are already filled. It’s amazing and a little disappointing if you’re still in the job market, but a good portion of consulting firms fill all of their entry-level job openings six to twelve months in advance of when the new hires will start working. That leaves a lot of soon to be college graduates who want to get into consulting with limited choices. Whether you were turned down when you applied in the fall, never got around to applying, or just realized that you’re interested in consulting, the apparent dearth of consulting jobs probably has you considering looking at other fields in lieu of consulting. Don’t give up so fast! There are still a lot of great consulting jobs out there, you just have to look beyond the sexy names. As is typical in the industry, Navigant Consulting does most of their hiring through campus recruiting in the Fall, but they still have some entry-level job openings.

Although consulting may sound like a very specific industry, it’s actually a pretty vague term that describes any company that helps guide other companies. Every consultancy seems to have certain specialties, but the main idea is that you hire a consulting firm because they have expertise in something that your company doesn’t. Navigant Consulting specializes in litigation, financial, healthcare, energy and operational consulting services for government agencies, legal counsel and large companies that are facing the challenges of uncertainty, risk, distress and significant change. Navigant Consulting is especially focused on industries that are “undergoing substantial regulatory or structural change.” So, that means that when the government changes the rules that businesses must abide by, Navigant is there to straighten things out. Since we seem to be in a world where the government increasingly interferes with and regulate businesses, this is an area of consulting that should see significant growth. Just look at the results from Navigant Consulting’s most recent quarter.

So why should you apply for a job at Navigant Consulting besides the fact that you can’t find any other consulting jobs? Well, they were ranked on BusinessWeek‘s list of “Best Places to Launch a Career” for the past two years (#53 in 2006 and #94 in 2007) and according to their recruiting profile from the BusinessWeek feature (this is really worth a look) they hire for approximately 100 entry-level positions every year. Since they’re relatively small company, entry-level employees make up a significant portion of their workforce. That should mean that there’s a youthful culture, which fits with what we’ve heard – that Navigant is more laid back than other consulting firms. We also like that they have a page about the career path for Navigant employees, since it makes it very clear what the opportunities for advancement are.

We like Navigant’s Careers Site since it has a lot of valuable content that is targeted to college students who are looking for their first job. The navigation is on the right hand side and is a little confusing, but the amount of information on their Careers Site more than makes up for it. We also like that it’s easy to find their entry-level positions, you just go here and click search. The job descriptions aren’t all that exciting, but they tell you everything that you need to know including minimum GPA, which varies by position. Current openings include: Energy Consultant in Burlington, MA, San Francisco, CA, and Washington, DC (yes, 1 job, 3 locations); Construction Consultant in San Francisco, CA; Healthcare Revenue Consultant in Washington, DC; and Disputes and Investigations Consultant in New York City, NY or San Francisco, CA (that’s two different positions).

That was pretty in-depth. We hope it wasn’t too much information, but there’s a lot to know about Navigant Consulting. Despite all we’ve covered, there’s a lot more to find out, so get researching!

Note: On April 25th we revisited entry-level jobs at Navigant Consulting. Since our original post, they’ve completely redesigned their site, so some things that we said may no longer be accurate. We took a brief look and fixed all of the broken links, and we have to say that site looks greatly improved.

Links to Help You Begin Your Research

If you’re looking for an internship in consulting instead, take a look at our post on One Day, One Internship about internships at Navigant Consulting.

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