FIRST YEAR TOTAL COMP AT AMAZON FOR MBAS REACHES $200K
According to TransparentCareer, which collects job and compensation data from MBA graduates, MBAs can make $200,000 in total compensation at Amazon in their first year of employment. That is a sum that would include signing and year-end bonuses as well as other perks. That is below what MBAs can make at McKinsey ($214,000), Boston Consulting Group ($221,000) or Goldman Sachs ($215,000), but they don’t have to put in the hours or travel usually associated with consulting or investment banking jobs. Amazon MBAs tell TransparentCareer they average 51.6 hours per week at the company, compared to 69 hours a week at McKinsey or 67 hours at Goldman Sachs.
The upshot: Interest in Amazon careers among MBAs is extremely high. At the University of Pennsylvania’s Wharton School, Amazon moved last fall’s on-campus information session to the Ritz-Carlton Hotel nearby because the expected crowd of 350 students would have been beyond capacity for the school. Other MBA employers now often ask schools when Amazon’s recruiters will be on campus because they no longer want to present on the same days due to the competition.
At Carnegie Mellon’s Tepper School of Business, 25 to 30 people, or 10% to 15% of the school’s annual MBA output, now accept jobs from Amazon. Steve Rakas, Tepper’s career-services administrator, told the Journal that the company easily fills the nine interview rooms in Tepper’s career center, while career-office staff also give up their personal offices for recruiters as well. On Tepper’s student treks to potential employers, Rakas says he and his career-services colleagues would lead about 15 students for the Seattle trip a few years ago. Last fall, he had to cap the group at 50 because demand was so high.
Though employment reports haven’t yet been released for the Class of 2016, Amazon will emerge again as something of a corporate vacuum cleaner of MBA talent. “When combining internship, two-year full-time, and one-year MBA recruiting, Amazon is our top employer this year,” notes Cynthia Saunders-Cheatham, executive director of the career management center at Cornell’s Johnson Graduate School of Management. “Amazon is either our number one or number two recruiter, depending on the year. Amazon now recruits here for four different internship and full-time programs. Amazon hosts office hours and corporate briefings. A couple of our first year students already have internship offers from Amazon through Forte and Consortium recruiting, and this was the case last year as well.”
RECRUITING TACTICS A REFLECTION OF THE FIRM’S HYPER AGGRESSIVE BUSINESS STRATEGY
“Amazon’s recruiting tactics can seem like a microcosm of its larger business strategy to other firms vying for MBA talent,” according to the Journal. “The company’s recruiters descend en masse on campus and stay in touch with students constantly; for instance, eight or 10 alumni might attend large events or host coffee meetings for one-on-one conversations with students, compared with a typical one or two presenters from other companies.” “It’s been a huge volume play,” Haas Assistant Dean Abby Scott told the newspaper.
While many MBA employers are trying to reach new students as soon as possible, Amazon has been among the most aggressive in this regard. In June, the company invited MBA admits who have yet to set foot on their business school
campuses to Seattle headquarters. Some 650 first-year and returning women MBAs showed up, some leaving with internship offers for the following summer–even before attending a single business school class.
Scott DeRue, dean of University of Michigan’s Ross School of Business, told the Journal that his school urges employers to hold off on recruiting until at least the end of the first week of classes. “It’s nearly impossible. You say an academic building is off limits, and they’re at restaurants and coffee shops across the street,” says DeRue.