How Stanford GSB Reports On Its Own 2018 MBA Employment Report

Record High Salaries

The median and average annual base compensation of $142,000 and $145,559, respectively, edged past last year’s all-time highs by $2,000 and $1,000, respectively. Average annual signing bonus rose by $1,600 to a record $31,146; the median remained unchanged at $25,000.

In lieu of other guaranteed compensation, dropped from reporting standards by the MBA Career Services and Employer Alliance, Stanford GSB last year began capturing an “Expected Performance Bonus” metric that includes guaranteed as well as non-guaranteed cash compensation based on performance. Of the Class of 2018, 72% expected to receive a cash performance bonus, an increase over last year’s 66% (in contrast, 12% reported OGC). These graduates expected an average bonus of $64,529 a slight decrease over last year; with a $35,000 median; and a range of $5,000–$400,000.

Nearly two out of five students, or 39%, who reported accepting a job also reported receiving stock compensation. This metric is not tracked by CSEA.

Timing of Job Offers

In adherence to CSEA standards, Stanford Graduate School of Business reports full-time job offer and acceptance rates at graduation, and at 90 days after.

At 90 days after Stanford GSB’s Jun. 16, 2018 graduation, 88% of the class accepted offers, same as last year; and 95% had offers, a 3-point rise.


Interest in technology rose to 33%, regaining the 8 points it had dropped last year; meanwhile, finance inched down a point to 31%; consulting dropped 2 points to 18%; and nonprofits gained a point to 4%.

Stanford MBA students and graduates were hired by a record 421 organizations, a 40% jump from 8 years ago. A signal of the sheer breadth of Stanford GSB employers, 94% hired just 1 or 2 students.


Not included in the CSEA-defined job-seeking pool, 16% of the entire class launched start-ups in a broad variety of industries. The top five for these entrepreneurial graduates are: software (18%), finance (13%), consumer products (10%), health care (8%), and internet services (8%).


In 2018, 68% of Stanford GSB graduates selected careers in the West region, representing a 5% increase compared to last year.

Outside of the West region, the Northeast was the next most popular location drawing 15% of the class, while international jobs attracted 10%.

“Our leading employers span a wide variety of industries — consulting, finance, technology, consumer products, healthcare, and nonprofits — but what they have in common are work environments that offer the ability to make an impact, optimize on career development, and provide diverse challenges and responsibilities,” said Janson. “In turn, our graduates chose opportunities they felt passionate about, and opportunities to make the world a better place.”