In a Rough Job Market, Some Business Schools Fare Better than Others

Last week BusinessWeek ran an article titled “MBAs Confront a Savage Job Market,” which painted a pretty rough picture for many grads of top MBA programs. At some top business schools, as many as 20% of grads were still unemployed three months after graduation. Furthermore, according to BusinessWeek, 16.5% of job-seeking students from the top 30 MBA programs did not get even one offer within three months of graduation (compared to 5% for the Class of 2008).

Salary numbers also suggested that the job market for MBAs isn’t great: Starting pay was down from about $98,000 in 2008 to $96,500 this year. For many of the top-30 business schools, this is the first time since the the dot-com crash that salaries haven’t increased, adding to the evidence that this is truly a once-in-a-generation (or once-in-a-decade?) downturn.

Fortunately for some grads, though, the world of top-30 business schools is not universally gloomy. Some schools’ career offices have been able to direct their students into more stable industries, such as government, health care, energy, and the non-profit sector. While becoming a mid-level government bureaucrat may not quite hold the same appeal as being a six-figure-making banker, many grads have opened their eyes and realized that these sectors are where the jobs are right now, and are taking these jobs when they can.

In other cases, hiring did happen, although it happened later than it normally does. The Kellogg School of Management, for instance, reported that 85% of of its grads received at least one offer, although many students received offers late in the spring — months later than they normally would. (To learn more about the Kellogg School of Management, download our free Veritas Prep Kellogg Annual Report.)

Other top schools have also been able to weather the storm pretty well. BusinessWeek ranked the schools in terms of how well they’ve held up job-wise in the recession, with Yale, Washington University, HBS, Stanford, and MIT Sloan coming out on top. At Yale, for example, only 8% of grads were without any job offers three months after graduation, just two percentage points higher than a year ago. While not all of these placed grads ended up in the careers they envisioned when they first applied to business school, you can be sure that they’re glad to have jobs at all.

If you’re just now starting to research business schools, download our 15 free Veritas Prep Annual Reports. If you’re ready to craft your own winning application, call us at 800-925-7737 and speak with an MBA admissions expert today!