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Vault’s Verdict

DC Advisory is ideally looking for smart, positive, hardworking team players with a strong understanding of finance and valuation, and excellent communication and social skills. The firm runs a highly valuable internship program, offering students hands-on live deal experience, client-facing opportunities, and access to helpful senior bankers. Meanwhile, full-time junior bankers have access to many growth and development opportunities, including excellent training, a lot of live deal experience, the ability to work with a wide variety of senior professionals, and fantastic international opportunities.

DC Advisory offers flexible hours and a WFH policy, which bankers very much appreciate. There are also ‘protected Saturdays’ for some groups, and although working on live deals means hours can be long, the workload is reasonable. Salaries are in line with the Street average, but bonuses are said to be below market. Insiders say benefits and perks could also be better.

On the plus side, the firm has made a big push when it comes to diversity hiring with respect to women, racial and ethnic minorities, and LGBTQ+ individuals; it also has developed various affinity groups available to its staff. In addition, the firm has in place many ESG initiatives, including climate-related volunteer events and planting a tree every time a deal closes. As for DC Advisory’s business outlook, the firm has been growing rapidly, hiring many new successful MDs and investing deeply across various verticals. This has positioned the firm very well for the return of the M&A deal market, and insiders say it’s an exciting time to work for the firm.

EMPLOYEE REVIEWS

Hiring Process

“I feel like the firm does a good job of looking for people who will build the culture and who have the abilities to learn and respond well to feedback. I appreciate that that is prioritized vs. cramming technical questions that don't become relevant on the job for a while/are learned on the job.”

“The ideal candidate is strong technically and behaviorally, exhibits a genuine interest in the firm, ideally is diverse, etc. Process-wise, interviews are pretty standard. An intro call, a formal interview, then a Superday. It aligns closely with how most banks do it.”

“I think our interview process is largely unstructured. There are vastly different timelines for different demographics and schools. I believe the ideal candidate is someone who is smart, has a relatively strong understanding of finance and valuation, has a positive attitude, and is very hardworking, an excellent communicator, and a team player. We also want the person to be likeable and have good social skills.”

“The firm is big on culture fit. They believe anyone can learn the skills and do the job with guidance, but not everyone can be an enjoyable person to work with. We look for good people who bring positive energy and work hard.

Interview Questions

“The Interview process is competitive and pretty standard. There are many applicants, who are asked pretty typical behavioral and technical questions. After that, it really comes down to who presents themselves best.”

“Walk me through a DCF, precedent transactions, comps, etc. Talk about your understanding of the analyst role. Would you rather advise a client on the buy side or sell side? Why would a company want to do an M&A deal? What are some alternatives to an M&A deal that a company could do with extra cash? What are the key value drivers in an LBO?”

“What are the four main ways to value a company? Walk me through a DCF. How do you calculate WACC? Walk me through a $10 increase in depreciation. Why do you want to work at DC Advisory? Tell me about a time you failed.”

“Good mix of behavioral and technical. Found technicals to be a little easier than other firms I interviewed at, but that might be due to the fact that I was attending a target school.”

Intern Experience

“The best part of the internship experience was the culture and the learning opportunity. The culture was fantastic and was one of the drivers for me coming back. Also, I learned an incredible amount from all the senior and junior bankers. Coming in, I knew the hours were going to be long and may have to work weekends, so it was nothing unexpected.”

“I received direct, client-facing experiences, assumed the responsibilities of a full-time analyst, and was able to fully understand what the full-time job entailed.”

“Best aspect was the nice and helpful people and getting live deal exposure. More financial and modeling training would have been helpful, but I still learned a lot.”

“I got to know colleagues, work closely with full-time junior and senior bankers, and was exposes to legitimate hands-on deal experience. On the downside, it wasn’t easy finding reasonable short-term housing accommodations in NYC for 10 weeks over the summer.”

Career Development

“You get the opportunity to collaborate on an international scale with other teams as well as move to other offices for work. You also get good in-house modelling training and opportunities to attend in-person meetings. However, we need more soft skill training at the junior level.”

“Standard promotion policies. Great on-the-job training, with staffing on live deals from day one. The generalist program allows you to work with many more senior people across many different deals.”

“Everyone is enthusiastic, highly motivated, and professional. Fantastic opportunities for growth and international exposure!”

“The bank is definitely a growth platform itself. New managing directors specializing across a variety of sectors are hired almost every two weeks, resulting in increasing exposure to a variety of deal types. Additionally, you get the option to work on the deals you want to versus simply being staffed, letting you focus on developing your skillset in a very personal way. Lastly, the frequency of international opportunities is probably only second to one other big bank, giving you the opportunity to travel and meet people globally. Although the name brand is getting stronger, given the U.S. platform is still fairly new, the brand does not carry the same weight as equal competitors.”

Quality of Life

“Flexible hours and WFH policy are great. It’s so nice to be able to leave at 5 p.m., have dinner with my family, and then log back on at home later in the evening. WFH every Friday and optionally Monday is a plus. Protected Saturdays too.”

“High caliber people (at junior and senior levels) and strong culture make it easy to enjoy working with your deal team. Unfortunately, Saturdays are not necessarily ‘protected.’”

“DCA is pretty right down the middle in terms of banking experience. Hours are long when deals are busy, but I don’t believe that the expectations are unreasonable. There is lots of live deal work, but the quality of deals we take on can be low, which hurts morale. On the positive side, managing directors tend to be pretty reasonable in terms of how hard they push juniors, and most are pretty good about not ‘creating’ work for no reason.”

“Very pleased with quality of life and firm’s policies of working from home and allowing us to go to the gym during the day. Also, the firm allows you to take off unlimited vacation, and senior bankers are generally respectful of that.”

Salary and Benefits

The salary is definitely competitive for a second-year analyst. That said, our bonuses were insultingly low for how hard we worked during our first year.”

“The salary is street standard, but DCA pays bonuses below Street, plain and simple. And benefits are very underwhelming. No 401(k) match or gym reimbursement, and there’s a strict expense policy on meals and car rides, etc.”

“Comp seems fair relative to work hours, although I haven't been at the firm long enough to have been through the incentive cycle. Healthcare options are relatively limited.”

“Minimal benefits when it comes to day-to-day life compared to other banks, and the Uber policy of free rides only past 9 p.m. from the office feels restrictive. I feel like for the purpose of safety, especially as a woman in NYC, it should be 8 p.m. in the winter, especially when it is dark. No discount to relevant gyms that many of my peers at other banks get.”

Wellness Efforts

“The firm makes consistent and honest efforts to promote and offer wellness options, and I believe they are fully bought in and mean well. However, what I would really like is a reimbursement for a gym membership, a grocery stipend to pay for premium organic food, or something more tangible than having ‘counseling options’ available.”

“I feel like there is a lot of commentary and press about the firm's policies and commitments, but not a lot of in-person initiatives or practices that encourage employees to prioritize wellness to support their work, etc.”

“The firm has some resources to connect bankers with help (e.g. counseling) if needed. We have a wellness committee, but I rarely see any meaningful action taken.”

“This was previously a strength of the firm’s (the firm had made substantial progress) but given recent changes to U.S. leadership, wellness has now been minimized.”

Diversity and ESG Initiatives

“The company does well to hire a diverse pool with respect to women, race and ethnicity, and LGBTQ+.”

“As a woman in banking, I feel the firm has done a good job in balancing our class and having affinity groups, etc.”

“DC Advisory seems uniquely committed to DEI. I’ve been very impressed. Also, we have a lot of ESG initiatives, including climate-related volunteer events, using recyclable deal toys, not using paper, handling most meetings virtually, etc. We also plant a tree every time a deal closes. “

“The firm has made a big push to hire diverse individuals, which is a positive. Also, there are various affinity groups available, which I think are very valuable. With that said, I think the quota-driven approach that the firm uses is counterproductive. We will hire folks because they are the only option, not because they are a good fit or deserve the role, and I think that does a tremendous disservice to the candidate hired, the firm, and the firm’s other employees.”

Business Outlook

“Great outlook. The firm is hiring more MDs, moving into new industries, and growing rapidly. Exciting time to be here.”

“The firm has brought on some amazing new MDs and has been investing deeply across verticals, positioning us well for when M&A activity returns.”

“The firm is dealing with the same struggles that the broader market is dealing with from a revenue generation perspective (deal volume is low). With that said, we lost two very prolific managing directors, and that is going to hurt. Also, I believe that the firm’s cost structure has been mismanaged (over-hiring) and rightsizing has not taken place at levels where it really should.”

“The firm is exceptionally well positioned to benefit in a meaningful way from the coming rebound in the M&A market. I believe they have made strong and smart strategic hires, and will take market share and boost pay for everyone on board in the coming years.”

DC Advisory

605 Third Ave, 11th Floor
New York, NY 10158
Phone: (212) 904-9400

Firm Stats

Chairman, DC Advisory US: Scott Wieler
CEO, DC Advisory US: Bill Kohr
2024 Employees (All Locations): 700

Major Office Locations

Chicago, IL
New York, NY
San Francisco, CA
Washington D.C.
Global