Which Business Schools Have The Most Sought-After MBAs?

MBA Jobs are a priority for most b-school grads. But which universities are the most sought-after by MBA recruiters? We reveal who is ranked top for the most popular career functions.

For most MBAs, finding a job after (or often before) graduation is the biggest priority.

After spending tens of thousands on a top business school degree, the MBA Jobs market is flooded with graduates eager to get a foot on the careers ladder. It is increasingly competitive.

Indeed, even before beginning an MBA, applicants scour MBA Rankings and cohort employment statistics to inform their decisions.

But which business schools are the most sought-after by MBA recruiters?

In the United States, The Fuqua School of Business at Duke University is among the top-ten favoured b-schools for hiring talent, according to a study by QS Top MBA. Harvard Business School and Stanford University Graduate School of Business also top the list.

The Global 200 Business Schools Report surveyed some of the world's top MBA employers, including blue-chip consulting firms Bain & Company, Deloitte and KPMG, as well hirers in the finance sector including Goldman Sachs, BlackRock and Credit Suisse.

In Europe, London Business School came second among recruiters, closely following the number-one ranked institution INSEAD, according to the report.

IE Business School, IESE Business School, HEC Paris and ESADE Business School were rated in the top-ten by recruiters in survey, while St. Gallen was ranked 11th.

The survey also rates top b-schools for employers in ten different areas of specialization. For entrepreneurship, leadership and strategy, Harvard is considered the best, the report says.

The Wharton School at University of Pennsylvania is considered the best among recruiters for finance, with LBS coming second. And Northwestern University’s Kellogg School of Management tops the charts for marketing, according to QS Top MBA.

For information management careers, international management, marketing, operations management and innovation, IE Business School was ranked in the top-five. LBS is ranked in the top-five for leadership, strategy and international management.

The top b-schools in the Asia-Pacific region according to recruiters are INSEAD (Singapore) and the Indian Institute of Management, the report says.

Of the 33 leading institutions to make the “Elite” category, 12 are from the US. The other nations with Elite Global business schools are Canada (6), the UK (3), Spain (3), Switzerland (2), France (2), Denmark (1), India (1), Ireland (1), Italy (1) and Singapore (1). No b-schools in Africa & the Middle East, as well as in Latin America, made it into the surveys’ elite category.

BusinessBecause reported last month that recent employment statistics show that top-ranking b-schools don’t necessarily translate into the best job prospects. A number of MBA programs in the US out-performed their higher-ranked rivals when it came to average base salary earnings.

But those from western b-schools are still set to earn the most. MBAs from the surveys’ “elite” b-schools’ category in North America earn more than those from any other region; salary and bonus packages average $123,239.

This is slightly more than the European figure of $122,983, although a b-school in Switzerland – IMD – had the highest salaries in the world ($159,912), according to the survey.

Although Harvard was considered the best among employers for entrepreneurship, one LBS graduate who spoke to BusinessBecause chose their MBA program to develop his entrepreneurial idea.

Corrado Accardi founded Pizza Rossa Ltd shortly after completing an MBA at the prestigious UK b-school and went on to raise a record among of crowdfunding equity (over £400K) to open two restaurants in London.

He picked LBS because of their “reputation, international standing and rankings”. “I joined the MBA because I wanted to go towards project finance. But I realized it wasn’t what I wanted to do,” he said.

“The real push to start this business happened during the MBA. LBS were instrumental in putting me in contact with a network of people in the food and beverage industry.

“LBS also gave me credibility among investors and it was the trigger I needed to explore the idea a little further.”

Another MBA student, from top-ten-ranked IE Business School, told us he chose their program to advance his media, tech and fashion career. 
Andrew Lutjens chose a European school for the innovative curriculum and diverse culture. At IE, over 80 per cent of their MBA cohort are international. "You need more than just a nice brand name and location in the United States. You need something that expands your mind. European business schools are more varied," he said.
He is confident an MBA will help him get his dream career - an innovative blend of technology and media. "I'd go into e-commerce or something of that nature," Andrew said. "I love the idea of the convergence of mobile technology with fashion. 
"At IE, you're forced to become self-aware and adapt. I've seen a change in myself over the program, becoming much more open to different ideas and cultures."

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