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As the UK consulting industry’s body works to standardise the sector, it has helped launch a new ChMC Associate Award for younger consultants. More than 100 individuals are already signed up to the latest certification offered up by the Management Consultancies Association and the Chartered Management Institute.

Over the last five years, the Management Consultancies Association (MCA) has been partnering with the Chartered Management Institute (CMI) to roll out a series of qualifications in the UK consulting sector. The industry has traditionally come in for criticism for its lack of quality control, and with the number of independent operators continuing to rise, the initial launch of the Chartered Management Consultant Award (ChMC) sought to re-assure clients of the value for money they get from consultants.

Since the formal launch of the ChMC, demand has gone from strength to strength – as firms recognise it as a differentiating mark of quality that can help assure current and future clients of their offering. Earlier in 2022, this saw the MCA and CMI confirm that the number of ChMC graduates had surpassed 600, while the number currently studying for it had grown beyond the 3,000 mark.

MCA and CMI launch chartered award for young consultants

Following on from that success, the institutions have also noted growing demand from other sections of the consulting industry. In particular, younger consultants keen to obtain a seal of approval when embarking on their careers have called for a chartered award catering to them.

Determining to deliver on that basis, the CMI and MCA set to work on the development of just such a certification – and have now jointly launched a ChMC Associate Award for younger consultants. The new award for young consultants is for consultants who can demonstrate a minimum of 3 years’ experience in management consulting, and aims to give recipients greater recognition earlier on in their career. It will also provide added value and recognition for individuals on an accredited programme which takes 5 years to complete.

Tamzen Isacsson, Chief Executive of the MCA, stated, “Associate is an important evolution of the Chartered Award. We founded chartered to satisfy the demand for a recognition of talent, achievement and experience in the profession and to raise standards across the sector. It has already established itself as the most prestigious award in the profession and Associate allows younger consultants important recognition on their Chartered journey.” 

The award is already proving popular, too. More than 100 young consultants have signed up – while seven leading consulting firms are understood to have adopted the new Associate Award.

The first individual to successfully complete the assessment was Ayrton Dhillon from Arcadis. The opportunity to apply for the Associated Award came at just the right time in his career, and he heartily recommended it to other young consultants.

Dhillon noted, “The chartership has helped me understand what it means to be a good management consultant and given me a framework through which I can develop. People who have got a feel for management consulting but who are asking themselves ‘what kind of management consultant do I want to be?’ I found it really valuable, not just on judging my progress to date but also where I want to go.”