Employers Still in Love with MBAs

Michelle Sparkman Renz

Michelle Sparkman Renz is an analyst and Director of Research Communications at the Graduate Management Admission Council (GMAC).

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    Christophe Lejeune

    Dr. Christophe Lejeune is a Research Advisor in the Research and Surveys Unit of EFMD and focuses on analysing quality and change in business schools.

    Latest posts by Christophe Lejeune (see all)

    Management education is increasingly valued by companies worldwide, according to the 2013 Corporate Recruiters Survey. Christophe Lejeune and Michelle Sparkman Renz report.

    There are huge risks to hiring someone without having a good understanding of what they bring to the table in terms of core skills, creativity, tech-savviness, work experience, and preparedness for leadership roles.

    Management talent developed by business schools are seen as a ‘solid bet’ among employers when they search for new hires. Growing salaries and aggressive recruiting strategies indicate that employers find MBAs and specialized business master’s talent increasingly valuable, as noted in the in the GMAC 2013 Corporate Recruiters Survey.

    This article draws on the hiring trends observed in the study and offers an opportunity to better understand the current job market by sector and region. It also helps business schools and companies gain insights into why (and how) today’s employers seek management talent.

    With responses from 935 employers in 50 countries, survey findings show a greater proportion of companies plan to hire people with a recent master in management (43% of companies) or an MBA (75% of companies) in 2013 than they did last year.

    Employers worldwide expect to hire an average of 14.6 new MBAs, up from the 11.4 they hired last year. Similarly, increases in overall hiring demand were seen for master of finance and master of accounting degree-holders. And, unlike the expectations for greater numbers of management hires, employers plan to hire fewer of the bachelors and directindustry level talent than in 2012.

    In short, five years of survey data from employers shows the growing importance of graduating with a management degree that offers the most relevant skills for today’s workplace. And although salaries vary substantially by region, data illustrating the value of this talent among employers are seen in the growing pay checks they expect to disburse to graduate management degree holders.

    European specificities

    Forecasts about an economic rebound in Europe have so far proved illusory as the region continues to struggle from more than three years of crisis.

    Not surprisingly when making comparisons across regional hiring demands, Europe offers a different context of management talent from those of Asia-Pacific and the US. Although hiring plans of job recruiters (as reported by hiring decision makers in March 2013) are generally on the rise for Asia-Pacific and US employers, the report indicates a slight decrease in planned recruitment for most job candidate types in Europe with MBAs as the notable exception.

    For the full article, you can view the PDF or listen to the podcast.

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