BCG Expanded MBA Hiring This Year

McKinsey & Co., one of the largest and most sophisticated of MBA recruiters, had a field day at Wharton this year. The elite consulting firm hired 44 MBAs from Wharton’s Class of 2010. Yet as large as that number seems, it was lower than the recruiting haul a year earlier when McKinsey snapped up 50 Wharton MBAs. No matter. Rival Boston Consulting Group more than made up the difference at Wharton. BCG hired 43 MBAs from the school this year, a dozen more than the 31 hires it took from Wharton in 2009.

These fascinating facts and more are buried in the just released 2010 employment reports of the top business schools. Not all the schools have published this data yet, and many schools fail to disclose the top employers for their MBAs as well as the specific number of recruits by each company. Nonetheless, there’s a wealth of interesting data in the few publicly released reports from such top schools as Chicago, Columbia, Wharton, Kellogg, MIT, Berkeley, Duke and Michigan.

This year, for example, McKinsey was the number one MBA recruiter at Wharton, Columbia, Chicago, and MIT Sloan. Besides the decline at Wharton, though, McKinsey recruited 12 fewer grads at Columbia (38 this year vs. 46 in 2009) and seven fewer MBAs from MIT (15 this year vs. 24 in 2009). Yet, at the same time, McKinsey increased its hiring at both Kellogg (hiring 32 this year vs. 26 in 2009) and Chicago (hiring 24 vs. 23 in 2009).

BOSTON CONSULTING GROUP APPEARS MOST AGGRESSIVE MBA RECRUITER IN 2010.

Of the major consulting firms, BCG seemed to be the most aggressively expanding MBA hirer. The firm increased its hiring at Kellogg (hiring 35 in 2010 vs. 23 in 2009), Chicago (hiring 19 in 2010 vs. 9 in 2009), Wharton (43 in 2010 vs. 31 in 2009), Columbia (25 in 2010 vs. 21 in 2009), and MIT (14 in 2010 vs. 8 in 2009). James Platt, a BCG partner with responsibility for MBA hiring, confirmed in an earlier news report that the consulting firm  has been growing at double digit rate rates since 2003. “BCG is continuing with our successful MBA recruiting in 2010,” he said. “We recognise the MBA as an outstanding achievement and will continue to focus on the top European, UK and US business schools.”

No other major MBA recruiter posted larger across-the-board increases with the exception of some of the financial services firms, such as Goldman Sachs and Morgan Stanley, whose hiring was fueled by a recovery from the severe economic recession in 2008-09. Goldman Sachs more than doubled its hires of Columbia Business School grads this year, employing 17 vs. eight in 2009. It also hired 13 Wharton MBAs, vs. nine a year earlier, and six from MIT, up from five in 2009. Morgan Stanley, meantime, doubled its hires from both Columbia and Chicago. Ten Columbia MBAs went to Goldman this year, up from five in 2009, while 11 went to the firm from Chicago, up from five a year earlier.

BCG was the single biggest hirer of MBAs at Northwestern’s Kellogg School of Management, employing 35 grads from the Class of 2010.  Johnson & Johnson was the number one company hiring Duke MBAs, bringing on 18, while Amazon.com was the single biggest employer for MBAs at the University of Michigan’s Ross School, hiring 15 this year.

Deloitte Consulting apparently found Columbia, Duke, Michigan and Berkeley to be happy hunting grounds for MBAs. The firm hired a dozen MBAs from both Columbia and from Duke and 11 from Michigan. Deloitte also hired the most MBAs from Berkeley’s Haas School in 2010, taking away 11 grads. Microsoft brought aboard eight MBAs from Kellogg this year, along with seven from Wharton, and another five from Michigan. Bank of America, meantime, hired 11 MBAs each from Duke and Chicago, 10 from Wharton, and four from Columbia Business School.

A STANFORD MBA LANDS A $330,000-A-YEAR JOB IN PRIVATE EQUITY.

While these firms were among the largest employers of elite MBAs, they didn’t necessarily pay the highest starting pay packages. The highest reported salary by a Class of 2010 MBA came from a graduate of Stanford who went into the private equity/leveraged buyout field. That person, anonymous in the pile of combined statistics on salaries of grads, told Stanford he landed a job at an unidentified private equity or LBO firm paying a salary of $330,000 a year. Another Stanford MBA won a job with a venture capital firm for $250,000 a year, while yet another joined a hedge fund for a $200,000-a-year salary.

At Harvard Business School, private equity firms were among the highest paying recruiters of MBAs as well. The median salary for an MBA going into private equity this year was $135,000, but some Harvard grads were paid much more. The school reports that the 75th percentage of the range of salaries among MBAs going into private equity was $185,000. The median signing bonus was $35,000, while the median additional guaranteed compensation was a whopping $155,000. Of course, these firms tend to recruit fewer MBA candidates–typically fewer than the fingers on one hand–and only at the most elite business schools.

See results below for the big MBA recruiters (An asterisk indicates that a company hired at least three MBAs. When a minus sign appears before a 3 and an asterisk it indicates the company hired fewer than three MBAs.):

CONSULTING FIRM HIRES OF 2010 MBAS FROM TOP B-SCHOOLS

Firm Chicago Wharton Columbia Kellogg Duke Michigan MIT Berkeley
McKinsey24443832713157
BCG1943253586145
Bain151817174512NA
Booz & Co.10111611265NA
Deloitte10712NA6113*11
Accenture47NA7390NA
AT Kearney7NA37NANA-3*NA
Monitor GroupNANANA6NANA-3*NA
CambridgeNANANA4NANA0NA
LEK ConsultingNANANA4NANA-3*NA
InfosysNANANA33NA3*NA
Oliver WymanNANA3NANANA-3*NA
ZS AssociatesNANANANA330NA

.

FINANCIAL SERVICE FIRM HIRES OF 2010 MBAS FROM TOP B-SCHOOLS

FirmChicagoWhartonColumbiaKelloggDukeMichiganMITBerkeley
Goldman Sachs913177406NA
JP Morgan/Chase78133013*NA
Morgan Stanley1114104NANA3*NA
Credit Suisse121216NA203*NA
Deutsche Bank10101414NA25NA
Citigroup131110NA183*NA
UBS7912NA37-3*NA
Barclays1678NA425NA
BofA/MLynch1110431113*NA
American Express 7NA12NA73-3*NA
Wells FargoNANANANA4NA0NA

.

TECH COMPANY HIRES OF 2010 MBAS FROM TOP B-SCHOOLS

Firm Chicago Wharton ColumbiaKellogg Duke Michigan MIT Berkeley
IBM8136NA113*NA
SamsungNANA548NA3*3
MicrosoftNA7NA8NA56NA
Apple4NANANA6NA63
DellNANANANA52-3*NA
GenentechNANANANA3NA3*NA
AmazonNANANA841569
Cisco4NANA4NA63*NA
IntelNANANA4NANA3*NA
SAPNANANA4NANA-3*NA
SymantecNANANA4NANA0NA
Hewlett-PackardNANANA3NA003
GoogleNANANANANA23*3
Yahoo!NANANANANANA-3*4

.

OTHER COMPANY HIRES OF 2010 MBAS FROM TOP B-SCHOOLS

FirmChicago Wharton Columbia Kellogg Duke Michigan MIT Berkeley
Johnson&Johnson NANANA81833*NA
MedtronicNA6NANANANA-3*NA
General ElectricNANANA3NA23*NA
General MillsNANANA9NA30NA
P&GNANANA6210NA
HeinzNANANANA6NA0NA
Wal-MartNANANA55NA-3*NA
Anheuser-BuschNANANA5NANANANA
PepsiCoNANANA5NA2-3*NA
Target4NANA5NA2-3*NA
United AirlinesNANANA5NANA-3*NA
MarsNANANA4NANA-3*NA
NissanNANANA4NANA0NA
Eli LilyNANANA3NANA-3*NA
EmersonNANANA3NANA-3*NA
Del MonteNANANA3NANA03
DanaherNABANA3NANA0NA
Baxter HealthcareNANANA3NANA-3*NA
Becton, DickinsonNANANA3NANA0NA
Dow ChemicalNANANANANA30NA
Sun PowerNANANANANANA05
ChevronNANANANANANA03
PG&ENANANANANANA-3*3
Bloom EnergyNANANANANANA03
NovartisNANANANANANA5NA

About The Author

John A. Byrne is the founder and editor-in-chief of C-Change Media, publishers of Poets&Quants and four other higher education websites. He has authored or co-authored more than ten books, including two New York Times bestsellers. John is the former executive editor of Businessweek, editor-in-chief of Businessweek. com, editor-in-chief of Fast Company, and the creator of the first regularly published rankings of business schools. As the co-founder of CentreCourt MBA Festivals, he hopes to meet you at the next MBA event in-person or online.