What Corporate Recruiters Say

Discover what recruiters are saying about job prospects for MBAs in 2015.

Each year, the Graduate Management Admission Council asks companies that hire recent business school grads about their hiring and salary projections for the coming year, what candidates they seek, and what drives their decisions about who to hire, what positions to fill, and where to place talent.

Hiring Demand for B-School Grads Reaches New Highs in 2015

 Employer demand for graduate business students continues to show a strong upward trend in 2015, as more companies plan to hire graduates from MBA and master-level programs in management, accounting, and finance compared with last year:

  • 84% plan to hire recent MBA grads in 2015 (up from 74% who hired MBAs in 2014).
  • 51% plan to hire Master in Management graduates (up from 41% in 2014).
  • 44% plan to hire Master of Accounting grads (up from 31% in 2014).
  • 46% plan to hire Master of Finance grads (up from 32% last year).
  • 57% plan to hire other specialized business master’s graduates (up from 45% in 2014).

Recruiters Want Experience and Skills

When asked what factors were most important in selecting business school graduates to interview, corporate recruiters most frequently cited responses were ‘proven ability to perform’ (92%), followed by strong oral communication skills (89%), and strong ‘technical and/or quantitative skills’ (84%), in addition to a history of increased job responsibility, strong writing skills, and relevant industry experience. Prior work experience is still key in helping you stand out in the job market, especially for MBA graduates. Depending on the degree earned, employers expect recent b-school graduates to have an average (median) of two to four years of prior work experience.

MBA Salaries Command Premium

Globally, more than half of employers surveyed plan to increase starting salaries for new MBA hires in 2015, either at the rate of inflation (30% of companies) or higher (21%). The median starting salary expected in 2015 for recent MBA graduates in the United States is US$100,000, representing an increase of US$5,000 over 2014 salaries and nearly double the expected starting salary of US$55,000 offered to bachelor’s candidates in 2015. Employers this year expect to place a majority of recent graduate b-school degree holders in mid-level (65% of employers) or entry-level (51%) positions.

Internships Lead to Jobs

Internships will help you build a network of contacts in your chosen industry and expose you to potential hiring decision makers. Hiring prospects for interns is high: 67 percent of companies had MBA interns in 2014 and the vast majority (85%) offered full-time positions to those interns. More than half of companies (56%) had business masters’ interns in 2014 and 83 percent offered full-time positions to these interns. Read more about how an internship can work for you.