Total MBA Pay At MIT Sloan Dips Slightly

MIT’s Sloan School of Management in Cambridge

MBAs in the Class of 2016 at MIT’s Sloan School of Management saw median total pay fall slightly this year largely because fewer employers paid its graduates sign-on bonuses. Total median compensation declined by 1.3% to $145,826 from $147,681 a year earlier.

It’s not clear why but fewer grads received signing bonuses in every job function, with the exception of consulting, leadership development positions and business development last year. For investment banking jobs, for example, 61.5% of the class gained a sign-on bonus, down from 93.3% in 2015; in corporate finance, finance operations, treasury and M&A jobs, signing bonuses fell to 44.4% of the class, down from 70.6%. Overall, Sloanies who reported signing bonuses in 2016 fell to 66.1% of the class, down from 75.3% in 2015.

In its 2016 employment report, Sloan reported median salaries of $125,000, median sign-on bonuses of $25,000, and median other guaranteed compensation, reported by 22.1% of the class, of $19,500. Other comp was down from $20,500 in 2015. A Sloan grad’s total median package this year was behind Stanford’s Graduate School of Business ($179,346), Harvard Business School ($163,827), UVA Darden ($150,688), Michigan’s Ross School ($150,606) is right behind Darden, Wharton ($148,892), and Columbia ($147,000).


The highest reported base salary this year was $200,000 for a business development job with a manufacturing company in the West. The job was landed by someone with three to five years of pre-MBA experience and an undergraduate degree in engineering. The lowest salary this year of just $40,000 was reported by a graduate who took an operations/project management job with a nonprofit in Africa.

There was some big money claimed in bonuses at MIT in 2015. One student reported receiving a sign-on bonus for a product management/development job of $77,000. Another MBA expected to receive other guaranteed compensation, in addition to base pay and signing bonus, of $89,380.

Job offers at graduation also declined to 88.7%, down from 91.5% a year earlier, though the job offer rate recovered nicely there months later with 95.3% of the class reporting offers, roughly the same as 95.6% in 2015.

McKinsey & Co. remained the school’s largest single employer, hiring 26 Sloanies in 2016, down from 31 in 2015. Amazon was close behind with 23 hires, followed by Bain & Co. (17), Boston Consulting Group (14), Google (9), and Microsoft (8). Other major employers included Deloitte (6), Bank of America/Merrill Lynch (5) and LEK Consulting (5) (see table below).


There were few shifts in the industry choices of the Class of 2016. Some 30.5% of the class accepted jobs in consulting, down a bit from 32.1%. Technology firms hired 29.3% of the class, down just a tweak from 30.6% a year earlier, while hiring by financial firms rose to 14.7%, from 12.9% in 2015. Roughly 5.8% of the MBAs went into pharma and healthcare jobs, up from 4.1% a year earlier. Some 3.3% joined consumer goods companies, up from 2.0% in 2015, while media/entertainment firms hired 2.7% and autos/aerospace and other manufacturing both attracted 2.4% of the class. Only 0.7% took jobs in the nonprofit sector.

The percentage of the graduates launching their own businesses in 2016 fell for the third consecutive year to 24 students, or 6.1%, out of a total class of 406 graduates. Only four years ago in 2013, 37 students, or 9.5% of the graduates, did startups off of their Sloan MBA experience. MBAs doing entrepreneurial ventures fell to 7.4% in 2014 and 7.0% in 2015.

The year’s highest median salaries of $144,000 were paid in consulting, followed by computer and electronics companies where the median base was $130,000. Jobs in investment banking, brokerage and investment management paid median salaries of $125,000.