Tag Archives: GMAC

GMAC Survey Predicts Robust Job Market for MBA Grads

One of the strongest indicators of a healthy post-MBA job market can be found within the annual Year-End Poll of Employers, a survey conducted by the Graduate Management Admission Council (GMAC) near the end of …

One of the strongest indicators of a healthy post-MBA job market can be found within the annual Year-End Poll of Employers, a survey conducted by the Graduate Management Admission Council (GMAC) near the end of each year. Hiring of b-school talent remains a priority in employers’ stated business goals for 2017, signaling expanded opportunities for competitive and high-performing MBA graduates.

MBA hiring trends

Hiring Projected to Increase in 2017

The year 2017 looks to be positive for job-seeking business school graduates, as 83% of surveyed companies have plans to hire b-school graduates this year, whether an MBA or non-MBA candidate.

  • Nearly 8 in 10 employers (79%) expect to hire MBA graduates in 2017, compared with 68 percent of the same companies that hired MBA candidates in 2016. Among companies planning to hire MBAs in 2017, 78% of employers plan of to hire as many or more of them than they did last year.
  • The 2017 hiring forecast for graduates of master’s programs in management and accounting is on trend with past years, with about a third of employers expecting to hire candidates with master’s degrees in management (31%) and accounting (29%), up from actual hiring outcomes in 2016 for these candidates.

Not only are a greater share of companies planning to hire business school graduates in 2017, but these employers also plan to increase the number of MBA and non-MBA graduates they will hire, expanding the number of positions for job-seeking b-school graduates.

Internship Opportunities Plentiful for MBA Candidates

The end-of-year 2016 poll results show that nearly all companies surveyed offer internships to undergraduate and graduate-level students.

  • Of companies that offer internships, 66% will offer internships to MBA candidates in 2017 and 82% of the companies that offer MBA internships plan to maintain or increase the number of MBA internship openings in the coming year.
  • On a par with past years’ findings, a smaller share of employers also expects to offer internships to candidates in business master’s programs including Master of Accounting (17% of employers), Master in Management (16%), and Master of Finance (15%).

GMAC’s annual employer hiring data collected through the Corporate Recruiters Surveys show that internships are one of the most successful means for graduate business students to acquire needed work experience and get a leg up in the job search. For example, 57% of companies surveyed last spring said they hired more than half of their MBA interns from 2015 to full-time positions.

Completion of an internship has value not just in boosting employment opportunities after graduation, but in determining starting salaries for recent b-school graduates. Nearly a quarter (23%) of employers who responded to the 2016 Corporate Recruiter Survey reported that participation in an internship would positively influence the base starting salary offered to a new graduate business hire.

Results of the 2016 Year-End Poll of Employers reflect responses provided by 167 recruiters from more than 140 companies of varying sizes and industry sectors across the globe, including 31 companies listed among the Fortune 500, 21 of which are also included in the Fortune 100.

For more findings from the 2016 Year-End Poll of Employers, you can download the full summary report at www.gmac.com/employerpoll.

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Highlight Teamwork in MBA Applications

This post originally appeared on Stacy’s “Strictly Business” MBA Blog on U.S.News. This fall and winter, career services departments in business schools worldwide can anticipate an increased presence of corporate recruiters on campus, predicts the …

teamwork in the MBA application

This post originally appeared on Stacy’s “Strictly Business” MBA Blog on U.S.News.

This fall and winter, career services departments in business schools worldwide can anticipate an increased presence of corporate recruiters on campus, predicts the Graduate Management Admission Council. MBA programs will want to make those recruiters happy by providing a highly competent pool of candidates for them to meet with. But what do employers really want in candidates?

GMAC answers that question in its 2016 Corporate Recruiters Survey, which asked 842 employers that represent more than 530 companies in 40 countries to identify the most important skills and traits when evaluating MBA and non-MBA business master’s graduates as potential new hires for their companies.

Among 12 traits that survey respondents ranked as most valuable, a candidate’s ability to fit within an organization’s culture was highest overall, followed by the candidate’s ability to work in teams and the ability to make an impact.

If companies want team players, you can bet that admissions committees do, too. Schools want to know that applicants are individually capable, but they don’t expect you to do everything on your own. They want to see that you are able to work with others to reach a common goal.

The good news is that you can show admissions committees that you already possess this quality. Here are three parts of the application process where you can highlight your teamwork skills.

Essays: Themes of leadership and teamwork run through many business schools’ essay topics, but simply acknowledging that you have worked in teams won’t prove to the admissions committee that you know how to do it well. Illustrate your success in this area by citing specific experiences.

For example, talk about a time when you encountered a conflict, such as over ideas on the best way to tackle a project, or personal conflicts with people on your team. Perhaps you worked with someone who was bossy and overbearing or with people who didn’t do their share of the work – show how you brought dissenters together to achieve that shared goal.

Mine those workplace or extracurricular experiences where you handled the normal pitfalls of teamwork. Maybe you have successfully dealt with communication challenges stemming from cultural differences, multiple time zones or just working with a client or coworker who preferred to discuss everything over the phone instead of email. The actual situation is irrelevant – the admissions committee simply wants to know that you can succeed in a program that is focused on a team environment and group projects.

Resume: The MBA resume should include details that explain what you did on a project,showcase specific achievements and results and highlight your increased responsibilities over time. Use these details to demonstrate your ability to work well on a team.

The following examples are from former clients’ resumes and help support their abilities to work well with others.

One client from strategy consulting had a bullet point that stated, “Conducted focus groups with influential client representatives to validate and communicate the strategy.” Another client from private equity noted, “Considerable client exposure: participated in pitches, due diligence and drafting sessions and preparing Fairness Opinions.”

A military applicant displayed his impressive interpersonal skills when he listed on his resume, “Represent and advocate for detainees during Law of Armed Conflict Detainee Review Boards.”

Every applicant is different, but most b-school candidates can find some way to convey teamwork experience on their resume. Think of examples of when and how you united people behind a common goal, capitalized on others’ talents and skills, instilled a vision, identified a new problem or prioritized the project’s needs above personal ones.

Interview: During an MBA interview, whether it’s with an alumnus or admissions staff member, you’ll likely be asked about a time when you worked as part of a team. The interviewer is trying to get to know you but is also assessing your fit with future classmates.

If you go to the Kellogg School of Management at Northwestern University, for instance, and work on a project within a study group, will your fellow students like working with you? Will you be timid about speaking up or will you communicate effectively and get things done?

Show off your teamwork abilities by mentioning a situation where you listened to others and bridged a gap between diverse participants to help foster collaboration on a project. Or talk about a time when you boosted morale or facilitated a compromise between two stubborn teammates.

You will likely encounter scenarios like these during business school, and if your interviewer feels you are already well-prepared for the inevitable challenges, your application is much more likely to receive a green light.

Building or running a business is not a solo endeavor. To create anything scalable, you’ll need to rely on others.

Even small enterprises require working with others to get things done. Prove you already have the skills in this area, and you’ll impress not only the MBA admissions committee but also future employers.

Image credit: Kellogg School of Management

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Curious About Working with an Admissions Counsultant? Join Us for GMAC’s Google Hangout!

If you’re working on your b-school application, you won’t want to miss our Q&A session during the Graduate Management Admission Council‘s (GMAC) upcoming Google Hangout, Behind the Scenes with MBA Admission Consultants, on Thursday, July 28 at 1pm EDT.   Hosted …

GMAC Google Hangout

If you’re working on your b-school application, you won’t want to miss our Q&A session during the Graduate Management Admission Council‘s (GMAC) upcoming Google Hangout, Behind the Scenes with MBA Admission Consultants, on Thursday, July 28 at 1pm EDT.  

Hosted by Eric Chambers, GMAC’s Market Development Director and former Wharton School MBA admissions representative, you’ll have a chance to ask your burning application questions, as well as learn about SBC’s consulting philosophy and approach to the MBA admissions process.

Register today and mark your calendar for what’s sure to be an enlightening conversation!

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GMAC Survey Reveals ‘Robust’ Post-MBA Job Market

Companies working directly with business schools plan to hire more MBAs this year than they hired in 2015, according to a global survey report released by the Graduate Management Admission Council (GMAC). The survey findings …

MBA hiring trends

Companies working directly with business schools plan to hire more MBAs this year than they hired in 2015, according to a global survey report released by the Graduate Management Admission Council (GMAC).

The survey findings are based on responses from 842 employers representing more than 530 companies in 40 countries worldwide who recruit directly from participating business schools.

Some 88 percent of corporate recruiters say they plan to hire recent MBA graduates in 2016, up eight percentage points from last year and 33 percentage points higher than 2010, the lowest point of the Great Recession.

GMAC conducted the 15th annual Corporate Recruiters Survey in February and March together with survey partners EFMD and MBA Career Services & Employer Alliance (MBA CSEA), in association with 109 participating graduate business schools.

This report highlights the value that on-campus recruiting brings to job-seeking business school graduates.

For the first time, GMAC broadened its reach among employers by conducting a supplemental survey of an employer sample purchased through an outside private vendor.

This “General Population Employer Survey” yielded responses from 1,282 companies located in the six largest markets for graduate management education — China, France, Germany, India, the United Kingdom and the United States.

The results show overall that half of the companies responding to the supplemental survey have plans to hire an MBA in 2016 — ranging from 35 percent of companies in Germany to 70 percent of companies in China.

“The difference in hiring projections between the two surveys highlights the value business schools provide to students in connecting them with employers that want to hire them,” said Bob Alig, GMAC’s executive vice president for school products. “These results are compelling evidence for admissions professionals to demonstrate the value of a graduate business degree to prospective applicants.”

“This survey brings to light the enhanced opportunities our member school career services offices bring to graduate business students,” said Damian Zikakis, MBA CSEA president and director, Career Services, at the University of Michigan Ross School of Business.

“Nearly 9 in 10 employers that work with career services plan to conduct on-campus recruitment this year, giving students a tremendous advantage in finding job opportunities that are a great match for their talent and aspirations,” Zikakis added.

Expected Starting Salaries

Globally, more than half (54 percent) of employers plan to increase MBA starting salaries either at the rate of inflation (33 percent of respondents) or above (21 percent); 46 percent will keep starting MBA salaries the same as 2015.

  • These MBA salary projections for 2016 are similar to those projected for new hires with non-MBA business master’s degrees, with one exception: 67 percent of companies that plan to hire graduates with Master in Supply Chain Management degrees expect to increase their starting salaries either at the rate of inflation (46 percent) or above (20 percent).
  • US-based companies plan to offer recent MBA graduates a median starting base salary of US$105,000 in 2016, up from a median of US$100,000 in 2015.
  • The median starting base salary of US$85,000 that US employers will pay to graduates of both Master of Data Analytics and Master of Marketing programs is expected to exceed the median salary they will offer to graduates of Master in Management and Master of Accounting programs.

International Hiring and Job Placement

Overall, 52 percent of corporate recruiters report that their companies either have plans to hire (24 percent) or are willing to consider hiring (28 percent) recent business school graduates who require additional legal documentation, such as work permits or visas.

  • Nearly a third (30 percent) of companies that plan to hire business school graduates in 2016 will place these candidates in multiple world regions.

“A graduate business degree is rewarding from a personal, professional and financial standpoint no matter which country you study in,” said Eric Cornuel, director general and CEO of EFMD. “The advantages students get from on-campus recruitment will pay dividends throughout their careers.”

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Today’s MBA Applicants Know What They Want

The Graduate Management Admission Council (GMAC) has released its 2016 mba.com Prospective Students Survey Report, which shows that business school candidates today consider applying to fewer program types and are more focused on a particular …

The Graduate Management Admission Council (GMAC) has released its 2016 mba.com Prospective Students Survey Report, which shows that business school candidates today consider applying to fewer program types and are more focused on a particular postgraduate career path.

On average, prospective students considered 2.8 program types in 2015, down from 3.1 in 2014. For their postgraduate careers, 71% of those surveyed cited a single industry of interest, compared with 58% in 2014.

GMAc surveyIn addition, 61% of prospective students cited a single job function of interest, compared with 46% in 2014. The economy may play a role in this phenomenon as prospective students may perceive it to be easier to go after their “dream job” in this market compared with the post-recession years.

GMAC’s mba.com Prospective Students Survey, conducted throughout 2015, explores the global business school pipeline from the candidates’ points of view — analyzing the motivations, intended career outcomes and program choices shared by more than 10,000 individuals worldwide who responded.

“Each year graduate business programs set admission goals to engage students from around the world who are the most likely to succeed in their classrooms,” says Bob Alig, GMAC’s executive vice president for school products. “The insights provided within this survey report are timely and actionable and a valuable resource to schools seeking to grow their candidate pipelines.”

Additional key findings within the report focus on preferred program types, school selection criteria, career aspirations, timing, and social media.

Greater Interest in Specialized Business Master’s Programs: Globally, 50% of prospective students are considering only MBA programs, and slightly more than a quarter, or 28% , are considering both MBA and specialized business master’s programs.

One-fourth (23%) are considering only specialized business master’s programs, such as Master of Accounting or Master of Finance, which represents an increase since 2009, when just 15% of candidates were considering only specialized master’s programs.

In Western Europe, however, the pipeline has notably shifted toward specialized (pre-experience) business master’s programs, especially within the past seven years. In 2009, 49% of prospective students were considering only MBA programs and 22% were considering only specialized business master’s programs. In 2015, 36% were considering only MBA programs and 45% were considering only specialized master’s programs.

Prospective Students Seek Blend of Classroom and Online Learning: Most candidates considering graduate management education seek a blend of classroom instruction and online learning, regardless of program type preferred.

GMAC survey

According to the survey results, even candidates who prefer to enroll in an online MBA program still expect 10% of their course instruction to be delivered in the classroom to allow for networking and experiential learning opportunities. Those contemplating a full-time two-year MBA expect to experience 86% of their coursework in a classroom setting and want 14% of their courses delivered online.

Timing of Application Submission: Prospective students begin forming their short lists of schools one year prior to application submission, on average. A specific event or circumstance often triggers a prospective student’s consideration of earning a graduate management degree.

Most common events include: seeking a new job but lacking skills to be competitive for the positions sought (27%), reaching a plateau at work (17%), and lacking knowledge to do a job (17%).

Social Media Use Is Pervasive: Almost all (96%) prospective students use social media. Of those that do, 67% use it for activities related to the pursuit of graduate management education, such as getting program information, learning about upcoming events, connecting with current students, alumni, or faculty, and researching graduate management education.

Facebook and LinkedIn are the most popular social media sites used globally, with the exception of China, where the instant messaging platform Tencent QQ is most popular.

“For the first time, members of Generation Z are included in our analysis,” says Alig. “We found that Millennial and Gen Z candidates are more likely than past generations to have ‘stretch schools’ on their short lists. All things considered, these candidates want to get into the best program possible — an indication of their high level of aspiration.”

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Weigh if an MBA Makes Financial Sense

This post originally appeared on Stacy’s “Strictly Business” MBA Blog on U.S.News.com An MBA is a long-term financial investment, so here are three questions to ask when trying to decide whether going to business school …

why MBA

Consider if an MBA will lead to a significant salary bump.

This post originally appeared on Stacy’s “Strictly Business” MBA Blog on U.S.News.com

An MBA is a long-term financial investment, so here are three questions to ask when trying to decide whether going to business school makes financial sense: Will the degree result in a significant salary bump? Will the degree help me switch careers? Will the degree help me get to a leadership position faster?

While it can be daunting to pay hundreds of thousands of dollars to earn an MBA, most business school graduates experience a substantial salary increase. The vast majority report having greater job satisfaction and the ability to advance quickly and, therefore, earn more in shorter time.

The Graduate Management Admission Council, which administers the GMAT exam, gathered input from b-school alumni worldwide in late fall 2015 to shed light on the issue of return on investment for its “2016 Alumni Perspectives Survey Report“, released in February.

Among the 14,279 business school alumni who participated in the survey, 75 percent say their graduate management education was financially rewarding, and 93 percent say they would pursue the degree again if given the choice. Although graduates considered three main areas when assessing their return on investment – expansion of knowledge/skills, personal development, salary increase – we’ll stick to just the financial aspect for this post.

Calculating the return on investment requires a simple formula. It’s the return acquired from an investment minus the cost of the investment, divided by the cost of the investment. Students of two-year MBA programs typically have the largest investment expense because they miss two years of employment. They need to recoup the cost of the MBA degree plus the opportunity cost in order to get a positive return on their investment.

Let’s consider the applicant who currently earns $70,000 a year and has landed a seat at the University of Chicago Booth School of Business. Tuition and expenses for the two-year MBA program at Booth will be about $200,000. She earns $15,000 during her summer internship, and her first year post-MBA salary in management consulting is $160,000 plus a signing bonus of $25,000.

This student’s opportunity cost – $143,500 in salary over two years – plus out-of-pocket expenses for tuition, etc. totaling $200,000, minus internship earnings, equals a total investment of $328,500. If she had not gone to business school and earned a typical annual salary increase of 5 percent, five years later she would be bringing home just more than $85,000 annually and would have earned $386,795 during that five years.

If she does the MBA, forgoes salary for two years, and earns at minimum a 5 percent increase over starting salary annually, she will earn $185,000 her first year and at least $529,400 for those same five years. More often, periodic bonuses and larger-than-average salary bumps mean that alumni frequently recoup their business school investment less than four years after graduation, GMAC reports.

GMAC found that more than 20 years after graduation, business school alumni earn a median cumulative base salary of $2.5 million. This is $500,000 more in cumulative base salary than they would earn if they did not go to graduate business school and consistently received 5 percent annual salary increases, and nearly $1 million more than if they did not go to business school and consistently received 3 percent annual salary increases over 20 years, the GMAC report says.

Prospective students should consider payback time with projected cumulative growth, and average growth rate, when looking at return on investment as a motivating factor for pursuing an MBA. But keep in mind, the value of the MBA degree varies widely depending on your post-graduation plans, as well as the brand ?of the business school where you earn the degree.

When it comes to deciding whether business school makes sense for you, remember that the choices you make – ranging from the cost of the city you decide to live in, the field you move into, the school you choose – will all impact your financial return on investment.

Your personal return on investment, however, is something quite different. Having the ability to transition into nonprofit PR marketing or some other lower-paying but more personally rewarding job may be well worth it – and that kind of personal satisfaction cannot be measured in dollars and cents.

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