MBAs (Masters in Business Administration) and other business school graduates on the job market may do well to look beyond traditional sectors to fields such as technology, manufacturing, and healthcare, according to a global student exit survey conducted by the Graduate Management Admission Council (GMAC).
Job seekers in those sectors are more likely to have an early job offer than those searching in larger, more traditional fields such as finance/accounting, products and services and consulting, the survey said.
GMAC is the worldwide association of business schools that administers the Graduate Management Admission Test (GMAT).
The survey, conducted in February and March this year, showed that some 57 percent of class of 2014 MBA and other business school graduates seeking jobs had at least one early offer. That is down slightly from 60 percent in last year’s survey but nearly double the 32 percent who had offers at the same time period in 2010.
“This snapshot of the early job market for business school graduates demonstrates that graduate business degrees are useful in a wide variety of careers. While demand remains strong among traditional industries, business school graduates shouldn’t overlook alternative sectors, which are actively seeking MBA and other business school talent,” Gregg Schoenfeld, GMAC survey research director, said.
The 15th annual Global Management Education Graduate Survey looks at how business school graduates view their programs and offers a snapshot of their early job search and career intentions. A total of 62 percent of the graduating students were involved in a job search, and another 4 percent were either self-employed or intending to pursue entrepreneurship at graduation.
Although salaries vary widely by industry, job level, and work location, the median increase in salary of those with job offers was 80 percent over their pre-degree salary. That is up from the 73 percent increase reported by business school graduates with early job offers in 2013.
Some key findings regarding job sectors for business school graduates: Technology is emerging as a promising sector for business school graduates, as 61 percent of those seeking jobs in the tech industry had job offers, accounting for 15 percent of all students with early offers. In 2010, just 9 percent of students with early offers were in the technology industry.
Manufacturing and healthcare/pharmaceuticals may be the undiscovered beaches of the business school job market. Although they account for just 7 percent and 5 percent, respectively, of the students with early offers, students searching in these sectors had the greatest success rate, with 74 percent reporting at least one offer.
Consulting is the most popular field for career-switchers, as 27 percent of all career-switching graduates with job offers were in consulting. Among all job seekers, 21 percent of those with job offers are in consulting, on par with 2010 (20 percent).