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Kenway Consulting


Vault’s Verdict

Kenway is a consulting shop that appears to fully live up to the values it aspires to, delivering an excellent experience for both clients and employees.

Highlights of life at the firm include a commitment to consultants controlling their own work-life balance, as well as a compensation model that provides bonuses based on value generated for the firm. Insiders are also particularly effusive about the firm’s SEP-IRA contributions, which are set at some 25% of salary, with no match required from individuals—a perk that will literally pay off for a lifetime.

On the work front, this is a company that insiders describe as “highly professional” despite its small size. While that view is largely positive, one or two employees do note that the sense of culture ends at the close of business; there are few after-hours events or bonding sessions between colleagues. That, however, is as close to a down-side as we could find this year, indicating that Kenway is a firm those looking for a boutique-sized experience may want to give serious consideration to.

Firm Culture

“A firm committed to integrity that will reward you based on merit and treat you like a human being, not a number in a spreadsheet.”

“Completely satisfied. I want to work for a company that cares about me as an individual and a company that continually challenges me.”

“First and foremost, our culture sets us apart from the competition. I read that a great career is equal parts challenge and support, and I believe Kenway does the support part better than anybody. This is because of our mission, ‘to help and be helped’ and a strong attachment to our Guiding Principles. The fact we live these principles has created a very familial, collaborative and supportive environment, where employees enjoy working and socializing together. This love of Kenway also manifests in better client delivery, because we care more.”

“Our leadership emphasizes doing our work for the right reasons. It is easy as an employee to make a correct ethical decision when you know your management puts so much merit into ideas such as no cutting corners, means over outcomes, and treating each individual uniquely.”

“We are a young company that gives employees opportunities early on that other larger companies would not give their young employees.”

Quality of Life

“Each employee is treated uniquely. This means that you have the opportunity to both choose your level of engagement and challenge and reap the corresponding reward. The culture that is stated is actually lived out by each employee.”

“I can't think of a single negative aspect of the firm's quality of life. They take burnout very seriously and allow employees to manage their hours and work individually, staffing accordingly. I spent 20 years in another industry and my work/life balance has improved dramatically since joining Kenway. The autonomy I'm provided is outstanding.”

“I really feel that Kenway supports work life balance. Everyone is very understanding if people need time away or need a mental health day. Any time I need to take time off I hear ‘take care of you’ which really helps! Sometimes client work can be demanding which can make you feel as though you cannot take time away but this is where I feel my colleagues help support me so I can take time off.”

“Kenway has ‘teeth’ behind promoting work-life balance. For example, at the beginning of every year, Kenway surveys employees on how many hours each per week employee would like to work, as well as their desired internal/external split of time. While not every employee's request is honored 100% (e.g., allocating less internal time to an employee than requested, so as to meet financial objectives), Kenway honors every employee's uniqueness and solicits their input on determining the appropriate amount of their week spent working.”

“We are a merit-based organization where you can determine your own career path and set, within reason, the number of hours you want to work each week and each year (within reason meaning you have to meet the standards for full time employment).”


“Best aspect is that there is no cap on bonus calculation (I am a new hire, so I am still not sure on actual numbers), our bonuses are calculated using a value versus cost model which includes taking into consideration any internal work we have been doing, and our 401k package is good.”

“I love that Kenway automatically deposits 25% of my paycheck into my SEP-IRA. I find that to be unique and think that is a huge benefit in growing my retirement funds. I also appreciate that we have quarterly bonuses with the largest being at the end of the year.”

“Kenway has very fair base compensation, but augments that with an incredibly generous SEP IRA plan to help employees save for retirement. It is 100% employer funded for 25% of total compensation. Also, Kenway has a very generous / aggressive profit sharing incentive bonus plan. It's common for employees to receive a bonus of 40% plus of our base compensation when the employee and company have a good year.”

“No matter your base salary, your bonus is based on your value brought to the organization. This means you can have a modest salary, but your bonus can be quite large.”

Career Development

“Best: Kenway is quick to recognize good work and is very rewarding.

Worst: not a lot of levels to get promoted to, but that isn't a big concern of mine as the pay is more important to me than a title.”

“Best aspects of my firm's career development include: skill development opportunities through internal projects, networking opportunities through client events and other social gatherings sponsored by my firm, and a career counselor assigned to each employee to help with employee's unique career path development.”

“Kenway is a very entrepreneurial organization, so while opportunities to grow and develop abound, they are not necessarily scripted for an employee. I enjoy being treated uniquely and the freedom to craft a career path and associated training that aligns both with my passions, as well as the growth strategies of the company.”

“Kenway's formal training program(s) are still relatively nascent, although progress is certainly being made. By far the most positively impactful aspect of Kenway's career development opportunities is its promotion process, which is driven by its proprietary Value-Minus-Cost model. In this model, employees' individual costs (e.g., salary, benefits, time spent requiring coaching, etc.) are subtracted from the business value they are deemed to have generated. This is determined via a thorough performance management process. The difference of these two figures determines an employee's bonus. Kenway compares employees' values against one another within and between roles, which is used for identifying when an employee is ready for a change in role (promotion, demotion). At Kenway, there is no hard-and-fast ceiling nor floor on how many years of experience one must have to be promoted; it is based on merit and value.”

“The best aspect of the career development opportunities is the fact that the organization is very egalitarian and provides the ability for individuals to take on stretch roles and grow. I was able to take on a management type position on a project very early in my career as was very thankful for the growth opportunity.”

Community Engagement

“All consultants at Kenway have the same opportunities and work conditions. A very good indicator of diversity with regard to women in Kenway is that the majority of management positions belong to women.”

“I definitely feel that all consultants at Kenway have equal access to interesting/high-quality work and promotion opportunities. Kenway also has invested in a series of mandatory DEI (Diversity, Equity & Inclusion) training sessions with a company that specialized in those which took a total of 16 billable hours away (8 sessions at 2 hours each) from every single employee at the company. I believe that represents a true commitment to D&I and continuous improvement.”

“Kenway has a guiding principle to ‘treat each individual uniquely’, and the company's behaviors are completely in alignment with the principle.”

‘The company makes a real and effective effort to hire and provide opportunities to a diverse group of resources. The company is still a ‘boutique firm’ which limits the diversity as the number of individuals is still low, however we see the limitation decreasing as the company grows.”

“We hire and employ individuals regardless of sex, ethnicity, religion, sexual orientation, etc. To ensure we did not have any gaps in our hiring practices or culture, we brought in a DEI consulting firm a few years ago to help us. Since then, we've continued to promote and apply the observations and recommendations that came out of that effort.”

Business Outlook

“I think Kenway is well positioned when compared to a lot of competitors because of its staffing model. We can be a lot more flexible and nimble than other companies due to our size.”

“Kenway continues to meet its targets and is growing steadily. We put a lot of emphasis on client relationships and organization. The project plans and documentation are incredible. This allows us to hold our clients accountable while keeping them informed.”

“Most employees leverage their network to bring in opportunities. The level of personal buy-in is high. The differentiators for Kenway allow us to repeatedly win against much larger firms and have kept us growing and heavily recruiting to add culture-matched talent.”

“Our strengths in this area are also our weaknesses. We are a professional services organization so our people and culture are everything. If our Leadership started to fail, that would trickle down to our emerging leaders, and so down then pyramid. That said, our Leaders continue to move the company in the right direction with the help of every individual in the company.”

“We have been in a growing pattern in the last couple of years since the pandemic. We are continuously hiring new people as we need resources to meet all the demand we are receiving as well as the recent signing of new clients. The global economic recession is a threat to the company as it is for all others in the industry.”

Hiring Process

“Callback process was great, I had a deadline to get the interviews in before another offer was due, and they were able to fit me in.”

“Candidates go through an initial phone screen, if deemed a good fit they move onto three full interviews; skills/experience, behavioral and a case study (to evaluate critical thinking abilities). Ideal candidates are intelligent, can pivot between things easily, have the desire to learn and are natural problem solvers.”

“I believe our interview process has the right amount of rigor. We don't have just one interview but also don't put the candidate through several callbacks. Our process is also swift (depends on the candidate's schedule) where we get back to the client within days not weeks. We are looking for intelligent individuals who are culturally aligned, highly motivated, and entrepreneurial.”

“I think the ideal candidate for Kenway is someone who loves consulting but doesn't want to work for a traditional consulting firm. It is a person who wants to achieve personal growth but doesn't want to constantly travel to a client site or have to deal with any rigid firm hierarchy.”

“The ideal Kenway candidate is smart, hardworking, has a growth mindset and lives into our mission of ‘to help and be helped.’ This manifests in a highly collaborative, supportive individual, who loves helping clients and their colleagues solve tough problems.”

Interview Questions

“During the case interview, candidates are exposed to a case where the employee needs to propose a solution to a company.”

“I had to do a case study and build a slide deck to present a business solution. I was also asked about giving and receiving constructive feedback. They also asked a lot about where I want to be in a few years.”

“Most of our interviews are focused on the person's past experiences and their values. We don't try tricking them with an unnecessarily difficult case or any ‘gotcha’ questions.”

“Our questions delve into both the skills or the applicant and if the applicant is culturally aligned. For skills, it depends on their resume (e.g., if they have data management expertise, we'll target questions in that area). Culturally, we'll ask what traits make up a good consultant, how would they handle some tough situations with a client, how would they handle certain situations with other employees.”

“There are three rounds of interviews (or there were when I interviewed a year ago). One focuses on skillset and resume experience; another focuses on scenarios and how our skills relate to them and finally there is a case study. While intimidating, I felt the case study helped show how people think about a problem.”

Kenway Consulting

20 N. Clark Street
Suite 1825
Chicago, IL 60602
Phone: (888) 953-6929

Firm Stats

Employer Type: Private
COO: Amy Wilkins
CEO: Matt Kueker
2023 Employees (All Locations): 82

Major Office Locations

Chicago, IL (HQ)
Charlotte, NC
Madrid, Spain

Major Departments & Practices

Core Capabilities: Technology Solution Delivery, Enterprise Program Leadership, Information Insight

Industries: B2B / Distribution, Financial Services, Healthcare, Telecommunications, 

Practices: Salesforce, Modern Data, Contact Center Solutions, Agile