Tag Archives: GMAC

Recruiters Seek Specialist MBAs with Soft Skills

At the Association of MBAs (AMBA) annual Employers Forum in August, two topics dominated the event: the need for MBAs with well-developed ‘soft’ skills, and the increased demand for graduate hires with specialist MBAs. The …

At the Association of MBAs (AMBA) annual Employers Forum in August, two topics dominated the event: the need for MBAs with well-developed ‘soft’ skills, and the increased demand for graduate hires with specialist MBAs.

The forum attracted 24 leading multi-nationals, including KPMG, Goldman Sachs, Bloomberg and BP, as well as recruitment and career managers from 22 AMBA-accredited business schools.

Due to a changing landscape for employers, graduates and business schools, employers do not necessarily want their staff to possess a financial services MBA, but now seek graduate hires with sector-specific specialist MBAs in a variety of fields.

This trend is reinforced by data from the Graduate Management Admission Council, which indicates roughly 64% of business school deans expect MBA programs to increasingly specialize.

As the 2014 GMAC Employer Survey also demonstrates, the days when the ‘hard’ skills of analytical and strategic thinking dominated are over, and it’s oral and written communication, presentation, adaptability and the ability to negotiate that companies are asking the schools to teach their students. Accenture, for example, introduced a ‘soft’ skills measurement technique which combines “defined critical characteristics for success, which are assessed by behavioral questions.”

The event included a discussion of the future of management education, which will likely move toward a blended model of MBAs, and how experiential learning will replace classroom-based learning, and that both of these shifts can be of benefit to employers.

However at this time, recruiters still do not consider job seekers from online business programs to be of the same caliber as those that have graduated from a face-to-face MBA program.

London’s Imperial Business School hosted the event, and its dean, Professor G. Anandalingham, brought home the point that an MBA is “the premium, flagship program – hence schools should partner with corporates to produce the kind of graduate they are looking for.”

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GMAC Launches Online Assessment Tool for Soft Skills

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GMAT Guide Update Includes 6 Months Online Access

The Graduate Management Admission Council, in partnership with Wiley, is making studying for the GMAT exam easier and more convenient. The best-selling Official Guide for GMAT Review series is adding online content, videos and a …

The Graduate Management Admission Council, in partnership with Wiley, is making studying for the GMAT exam easier and more convenient. The best-selling Official Guide for GMAT Review series is adding online content, videos and a study tool, allowing b-school applicants to access hundreds of real, retired GMAT questions both in book form and online to customize their own question sets.

“The Official Guide for GMAT Review has been a consistently popular trade publication since the first edition was published in 1978,”says Ashok Sarathy, GMAC vice president, product management. “Now, we are making studying for the GMAT exam easier and more flexible, as people can both annotate the book and customize question sets with the new, online component.”

Joan O’Neil, VP and managing director at Wiley, calls the partnership with GMAC ideal, adding “We are excited to see how the new online aspects and tools evolve so we can continue to bring the best content and value to our customers.”

The 2015 series will contain the same content as the Official Guide for GMAT Review, 13th Edition, and the Official Guide for Quantitative Review, Second Edition, and the Official Guide for Verbal Review, Second Edition, along with access to exclusive online content including videos and a study tool that allows users to customize practice sets by question format and difficulty level.

“We see our role as giving candidates the best opportunity to perform to the best of their ability on the GMAT exam.  Publishing the Official Guide is part of that mission as the series offers more retired practice questions than any other product on the market. The online enhancements made to the 2015 edition are the first of many improvements, and we plan to update the Guides on an annual basis,” Sarathy says.

The 2015 series is available at bookstores worldwide and at the mba.com/store.

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MBA Hiring Up in 2014, Says New GMAC Survey

More companies plan to hire MBAs and other business school graduates in 2014, according to a recently published global survey of employers. Some 80% of business school recruiters plan to hire MBAs in 2014, up …

More companies plan to hire MBAs and other business school graduates in 2014, according to a recently published global survey of employers. Some 80% of business school recruiters plan to hire MBAs in 2014, up seven percentage points from last year and 30% points higher than 2009, in the heart of the economic crisis, when just half of employers hired MBAs.

For the 13th annual Corporate Recruiters Survey, the Graduate Management Admission Council polled 565 employers from 44 countries during February and March. GMAC partnered with EFMD and the MBA Career Services and Employer Alliance to conduct the survey, which included 32 of the top 100 companies in the FT 500 and 36 of the Fortune 100.

The optimistic hiring outlook for MBAs and other master’s-level business graduates comes as companies shift focus away from overcoming economic challenges and look toward growth and expansion.

The percentage of companies reporting a focus on overcoming economic challenges dropped from 58% in 2009 to 25% this year, as well as reducing costs, from 66% in 2009 to 45% this year. At the same time, the percentage of employers planning to hire new bachelor’s degree graduates is holding steady, down one percentage point from the 75% that hired bachelor’s graduates in 2012 and 2013.

“More companies in all sectors and across the world plan to hire business school graduates, with projected hiring rates the highest for all degree types since the Great Recession started in 2009,” says Sangeet Chowfla, GMAC CEO and president. “MBAs have always been valued by employers, but this survey shows that as the economy improves, employers see MBAs as a good investment into their future.”

Here are some of the survey’s key findings:

  • Some 83% of employers in Asia-Pacific, 61 percent of European employers, and 86% of US employers plan to hire MBAs this year, all increases from 2013.
  • When considering communication, managerial, teamwork, leadership and technical skills, employers say communication skills are the most important ones they seek in new hires, on average twice as important as managerial skills.
  • Median base salaries employers expect to offer MBAs are $95,000 in the US and $69,000 in Europe. Projected median MBA base salary in Asia-Pacific is $21,340, reflecting much lower per-capita income in the region.

Professor Eric Cornuel, CEO & director general of EFMD, says,”This year’s survey paints a very positive picture for the business education sector and clearly shows how companies and recruiters value the whole portfolio of business degrees. Despite all of the doom and gloom, the clear message from the market is that business schools are providing the talented, bright individuals that companies need.”

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B-School Opens Doors to Entrepreneurship, New Survey Shows

More than 1 in 10 business school alumni are self-employed, and the longer they’ve been out of business school the more likely they are to have taken an entrepreneurial career path, says a worldwide survey …

More than 1 in 10 business school alumni are self-employed, and the longer they’ve been out of business school the more likely they are to have taken an entrepreneurial career path, says a worldwide survey of nearly 21,000 business school alumni from the classes of 1959-2013, released this week by the Graduate Management Admission Council.

“While entrepreneurship is a hot topic and is a very popular course of study at today’s business schools, these findings suggest that business schools have always prepared students to launch and manage their own businesses,” says Sangeet Chowfla, president and CEO of GMAC, the worldwide association of business schools that conducts the GMAT exam.

“Even if alumni don’t become entrepreneurs at graduation — something more common with today’s graduates — their business education provides the career flexibility and the skills that help them start businesses years later.”

Surveying alumni from 132 business schools around the world, the 2014 Alumni Perspectives Survey is the largest and most far-reaching alumni survey GMAC has ever produced and offers insights into career progression, job and degree satisfaction, and school engagement with alumni spanning more than five decades.

Around the world, the vast majority of MBA and other graduate business degree holders rate the value of their degree highly (94 percent), report high degrees of job satisfaction (83 percent), and say their expectations for the financial return on investment of their graduate management education were met or exceeded (79 percent).

In general, the percentages of alumni reporting satisfaction with their business degrees, jobs, and careers increased the longer they have been out of school.

The survey found that overall, 79 percent of alumni from the classes of 1959-2013 currently work for an employer, 11 percent are self-employed, and 5 percent were retired. The findings include a snapshot view of business school alumni entrepreneurs:

  • The percentage of business school alumni who are now self-employed ranges from 5 percent of the classes of 2010-2013 to 23 percent of those who graduated before 1990. Average time from graduation to self-employment also varies by graduation decade: three years for the classes of 2000-2009, nine years for 1990s graduates, 15 years for 1980s graduates, and 20 years for those who graduated before 1980.
  • Forty-five percent of alumni entrepreneurs from the classes of 2010-2013 started businesses at graduation, as compared with just 7 percent of alumni entrepreneurs who graduated before 1990.
  • 14 percent of recent (2010-2013) alumni entrepreneurs work in the technology sector, compared with just 2 percent of those graduating before 1990. More than 3 in 10 self-employed alumni work in both products and services and consulting (each 31 percent).
  • Entrepreneurship rates among business school alumni vary by world region, with higher entrepreneurship rates in Asia/Pacific Islands, Canada, and Latin American than the United States. Across all regions, the proportion of alumni who are self-employed increases with time out of business school.

“Without the entrepreneurship education I received [while at business school], I would very likely not have started my own company and therefore I would not have become financially independent and surely not have become a professor for entrepreneurship myself,” commented one alumnus.

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Steady MBA Job Outlook Projected for 2014 Grads

The job market will likely hold steady for 2014 business school graduates, as more than three-quarters of employers that plan to hire business school graduates expect to maintain or increase their hiring from this year, …

The job market will likely hold steady for 2014 business school graduates, as more than three-quarters of employers that plan to hire business school graduates expect to maintain or increase their hiring from this year, according to the Year-End Poll of Employers conducted by the Graduate Management Admission Council.

“Actual hiring for 2013 and projected hiring for 2014 are much improved from a few years ago, despite persistent uncertainty in the global economy,” said Rebecca Estrada, GMAC survey manager. “In addition, between 45 percent and 58 percent of employers plan to increase annual base salaries at or above the rate of inflation, another indicator that demand for talent remains strong.”

The poll of 211 employers in 33 countries serves as an early gauge of next year’s job market and includes one-fifth of the Fortune 100 and 41 Fortune 500 companies. It projects some optimism for direct-from-industry hires and master in management graduates, as the percentages of employers who expect to hire in these categories is five percentage points higher than the percentage that actually hired them last year (87 percent vs. 82 percent in 2013 for direct-industry hires and 42 percent vs. 37 percent in 2013 for master in management graduates).

But in most categories, the percentages of employers planning to hire new graduates in most categories are very similar to the percentages of those who hired these graduates in 2013:

  • 72 percent expect to hire MBAs, compared with 71 percent that hired them this year.
  • 81 percent expect to hire bachelor’s degree holders, compared with 82 percent that hired them this year.
  • 36 percent expect to hire master of accounting graduates, compared with 35 percent that hired them this year.
  • 35 percent expect to hire master of finance graduates, compared with 36 percent that hired them this year.

The poll also found the overwhelming majority of employers (97 percent) agree that business school graduates need to have exceptional interpersonal skills, as well as the ability to use data to drive decisions.

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Strong Employment Rates Reported for 2013 MBA Grads

In a September poll of the job market conducted by the Graduate Management Admission Council, 90% of the MBA Class of 2013 indicated they were employed. GMAC reports this figure is six percentage points above …

In a September poll of the job market conducted by the Graduate Management Admission Council, 90% of the MBA Class of 2013 indicated they were employed. GMAC reports this figure is six percentage points above the 2009 employment rate, but down a tick from the 92% of graduates employed by September 2012.

There is some fluctuation in rates by geographic region, with 95% of U.S. respondents employed, 92% of Latin American, 87% of Indians, 82% of Europeans, and 85% of graduates in Asia-pacific countries.

Despite continued economic uncertainty, 74% of class of 2013 alumni who landed jobs said they could not have gotten it without their graduate management education.

“In spite of the slow, uneven economic recovery around the world, the job outlook for business degree-holders is holding fairly steady,” says Gregg Schoenfeld, director of management education research for GMAC. “Regardless of employment status, the vast majority of alumni from the class of 2013 believe their education developed their skills, expanded their network, and prepared them for the job market.”

Key findings:

  • The technology sector is drawing 15% of the class of 2013 graduates worldwide, up from 12% in 2009.
  • Ninety-two percent of full-time two-year MBA alumni were employed at the time of the follow-up alumni poll — the highest level reported since the class of 2009.
  • MBAs and other business master’s degree-holders continue to find opportunities in a variety of industries, with a total of 57% employed in the products and services, finance and accounting, and consulting sectors.
  • Five percent of class of 2013 alumni reported themselves as entrepreneurs/self-employed. A majority (78%) of self-employed alumni expect to hire a median of three employees in the next 12 months.
  • Almost all class of 2013 alumni (96%) rated the value of their degree as outstanding, excellent or good, similar to previous years.

The poll is a follow-up to the GMAC Global Management Education Graduate Survey, an exit survey of graduate business students conducted in February and March. Some 915 alumni from 129 business schools worldwide responded to the poll in September.

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