Harvard | Ms. Analytical Leader
GMAT 760, GPA 3.9
Chicago Booth | Mr. Non-Profit Latino
GMAT 710, GPA 3.06
Darden | Mr. Financial World
GMAT 730, GPA 7.8
Cambridge Judge Business School | Ms. Story-Teller To Data-Cruncher
GMAT 700 (anticipated), GPA 3.5 (converted from Australia)
Kellogg | Mr. Operator
GMAT 740, GPA 4.17/4.3
Duke Fuqua | Mr. Air Force Vet
GRE 311, GPA 3.6
Kellogg | Mr. Engagement Manager
GMAT 700, GPA 3.2
London Business School | Mr. Family Investment Fund
GMAT 790, GPA 3.0
Columbia | Mr. M&A Analyst
GRE 323, GPA 3.4
Cornell Johnson | Mr. Top Performer
GMAT 730, GPA 3.3
Harvard | Mr. STEM Minor
GMAT 740, GPA 3.78
Harvard | Mr. Fresh Perspective
GRE 318, GPA 3.0
USC Marshall | Mr. Supply Chain Guru
GMAT GMAT Waiver, GPA 2.6
Wharton | Mr. MBA When Ready
GMAT 700 (expected), GPA 2.1
HEC Paris | Mr. Productivity Focused
GMAT 700, GPA 3.6
MIT Sloan | Mr. Energy Transition
GMAT 760, GPA 3.95
Harvard | Mr. Sommelier
GMAT 710, GPA 3.62
Kellogg | Ms. Strategic Photographer
GRE 318 (to retake), GPA 3.68
INSEAD | Ms. Social Business
GMAT 750, GPA 4.0
Berkeley Haas | Mr. Hanging By A Thread
GMAT 710, GPA 3.8
Harvard | Ms. Comeback Kid
GMAT 780, GPA 2.6
Harvard | Mr. MBB Latino Engineer
GMAT 710, GPA 3.75
Wharton | Mr. African Impact
GMAT 720, GPA 3.8
Harvard | Mr. Hedge Funder
GMAT 790, GPA 3.82
London Business School | Mr. College Dropout
HEC Paris | Ms. Freelancer
GMAT 710, GPA 5.3
Stanford GSB | Mr. Healthcare AI
GRE 366, GPA 3.91

MBA Job Market Continues To Improve

Some 92% of those with graduate degrees in business and management last year found employment within three months after graduation, according to a survey of 2012 grads by the Graduate Management Admission Council released yesterday (Jan. 22). It was the highest employment rate reported in this survey for any graduating class since 2003 and a full six percentage points higher than the 86% of the Class of 2011 graduates polled at the same time a year earlier by GMAC. Nearly 7 in 10 (68%) graduates secured their job before leaving graduate school.

As previously reported by PoetsandQuants, placement rates were even higher at some of the more prominent business schools last year. Emory’s Goizueta School posted the highest job offer rate this year, with 98% of the Class of 2012 with offers of employment within three months, up three percentage points from 95% in 2011. Four other well-known schools followed Emory, each with 96% of their graduates getting job offers within three months: UC-Berkeley Haas, Northwestern University’s Kellogg School of Management, MIT Sloan, and Columbia Business School.

The new GMAC study found that some 77% of the class of 2012 graduates surveyed said their starting salary met or exceeded their expectations, and 76% said they could not have gotten their job without their graduate management education.

“As the economy improves in many parts of the world, employers who are hiring look for skilled managers to lead the way,” said Dave Wilson, GMAC president and CEO, in a statement. “MBAs and other graduate degrees provide the skills people need to manage tough problems in today’s complex marketplace.”

GMAC said a variety of factors affect compensation, such as pre-degree salary and experience, industry and job function, and median salaries of the class of 2012 showed significant differences by program type. For example, those graduating from full-time two-year MBA programs had a median salary of $85,000, with additional compensation of $10,000, whereas those graduating from full-time one-year MBA programs had a median salary of $59,000 with additional compensation of $5,500 (age, program location, and work location are confounding factors). Median starting salaries of 2012 graduates varied most widely by work location (shown in US dollars):

  • Europe: $105,120
  • US: $83,000
  • Canada: $81,443
  • Asia Pacific Islands: $52,329
  • Latin America: $48,557
  • Central Asia: $27,818
The best placement rates were reported in India where 88% of graduates reported receiving a job offer before graduation. That success rate exceeded the U.S. where 73% of grads had received an offer before commencement (see table below). The worst market? Latin America where only 36% had job offers before graduation. Overall, more than two-thirds (68%) of Class of 2012 alumni had obtained an offer of employment before graduation. An additional 15% of Class of 2012 alumni had a job offer in hand within a month after graduating.

Source: GMAC alumni perspectives survey

When searching for a job, GMAC said alumni found their greatest number of employment opportunities through three main channels: networks of personal contacts (23%), school career services (22%), and on-campus interviews (21%). These are also the top methods employers use to recruit new graduate business school talent.10 As reported in GMAC’s 2012 corporate recruiters survey, companies primarily seek new business school hires through referrals and on-campus recruitment.

Not only were Class of 2012 alumni successful in landing job offers, the vast majority (92%) said they took a job that they wanted, according to the GMAC study. For those who received job offers within a month after graduation, 95% indicated the job they took was the one they sought. On the other hand, alumni who received a job offer more than a month after graduation were less likely to take a job that matched what they were seeking (84%).

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.