What is the BCG Potential Test and Why is it Used?

BCG (Boston Consulting Group) potential test is an online test used in the first round of interviews. This test allows BCG to test candidates using the same test giving them a better comparison tool for evaluating candidate performance.

What is the format of this Test?

The format may be different in other offices, according to our readers these are some of the formats they have seen.

My test had 53 questions in 50 minutes. They will tell you how the test is scored (some questions have higher value) but not the pass grade.

My test was 50 questions in 50 minutes, the test was divided into 9 short sections each with 3-6 questions.

23 questions in 45 minutes

Types of Questions on the Potential Test

Straight math questions

Text comprehension

Critical reasoning


Graph and data interpretation

Preparing for the Potential Test

The main areas to practice for the Potential test is computations and data interpretation.

Practice Computations:

The first method is to practice the speed and accuracy of your arithmetic. The BCG Potential test is a TIMED test. It is VERY IMPORTANT you practice your math computations. Your math computation skills are a muscle. The more you use it, the stronger it gets. Keep in mind even if you calculate an integral effortlessly, it doesn’t mean you can’t make an error doing basic computations.

One resource I’d recommend to develop your computation accuracy and speed is www.CaseInterviewMath.comThis is a math practice tool that I developed for practicing: 1) arithmetic for speed and accuracy and 2) estimation math with large numbers.

This tool compares your math accuracy and speed to other CaseInterview.com members and to my own test results as benchmark. This will help give you an idea of how your math skills compare with others; and whether or not you need to improve your math speed and accuracy to be competitive, or if your current skills are sufficient.

In addition to practicing math computations, you want to practice and develop your data interpretation skills.

Practice Data Interpretation

For data interpretation, the practice questions that most closely resemble Potential questions are practice test questions from certain sections of the GRE. In particular, I would recommend practice “word problems” and “data interpretation” type GRE questions. Polishing your foundational skills in word problems and data interpretation is a good idea.

Data Interpretation & Word Problem Practice Resources:

  • Kaplan GRE Exam Math Workbook(Copyright 2008)- Chapter 2 Arithmetic Review (if you’re really rusty on math), Chapter 6 – Word Problem Practice, Chapter 7 – Data Interpretation Practice
  • Nova’s GRE Math Prep Course(Copyright 2010) – Percent’s (page 330-346), Graphs (pages 347 – 375), Word Problems (pages 376 – 396) [If you’re really rusty on math: Averages (pages 274 – 284), Ratio & Proportions (pages 285 – 303)
  • Cliff Notes Math Review for Standardized Tests(2nd Edition, Copyright 2010) – Word Problems Review (pages 318 – 362, but excluding the section on Geometry pages 347 – 350)

Online Practice Resources:

Are you a reader that recently has taken the BCG Potential Test and can share with our other readers your experience with the test and how you prepared if so, please comment below.