The Best European Business Schools Ranked By MBA Recruiters

A survey of 30,000 employers at leading companies has revealed which European business schools' MBA students are the most sought-after by recruiters.

United Kingdom-based business schools are the highest-rated schools in Europe by MBA recruiters, according to a new survey of nearly 30,000 employers released this week by QS.

Of 65 top-flight European business schools, MBA programs from the UK dominated a list of recruiters’ preferences. Some 26 of those programs represented the British region, significantly more than second-placed France which has 9 business schools rated by recruiters.

The QS Global 200 Business Schools Report surveyed 28,759 employers, 5,669 of whom were active recruiters of MBAs, including large global consulting firms such as Bain & Company, EY and KPMG, international banks including Deutsche and Citi, and technology giants such as Google and Apple.

INSEAD, the global business school which has a campus in France, lost its number-one spot to London Business School after a decade at the top of the recruiters’ chart. But both schools scored highly among international employers, giving them profiles that far exceed any other European institutions and place them on a par with Harvard at the top of the global hierarchy.

HEC Paris climbed 10 places to rank fourth, while Oxford’s Saïd Business School moved up to third place in QS’ table.

Several other European business schools are now highly-rated by MBA recruiters, including Cass Business School and Strathclyde Business School in the UK, and Grenoble École de Management of France, which all gained 20 places or more in the rankings.

Elsewhere in the top-10, both IE and IESE business schools of Spain retained their reputations with employers, while the UK’s Cambridge Judge Business School entered the top-10 this year.

The UK and France have the biggest clusters of top schools in QS’ ranking, followed by Spain with five, and both Switzerland and Germany – which has a growing business education market – with four schools each.

Notably, there were gains for lesser known MBA countries including Turkey, Portugal and Greece, the Eurozone’s current highest-performing economy.

QS also surveyed 63,676 faculty and other academics to compile the ranking, of which 3,128 responses were used, and combined with previous years’ responses to make up 15% of the weight of the ranking, with the remaining 85% made up of recruiters’ answers. In total, 7,187 academic responses were used.

MBAs at German business schools have the highest GMAT scores – an average of 636 – followed by Spain with 614, France with 610, the Netherlands’ 601, the UK’s 600, and Switzerland with 595.

The UK, however, dominates the list of employers’ preferences. Imperial College Business School, Cranfield School of Management, Durham University Business School and Lancaster University Management School, along with Aston and Henley business schools, are all considered among the best in Europe by MBA recruiters.

Other schools which score highly in separate MBA rankings are in QS’ new list, including EMLYON and ESSEC business schools of France, Italy’s MIP Politecnico di Milano, ESADE Business School of Spain, and St Gallen HSG in Switzerland. 

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