Better Job Market, higher Salaries

Von am 10. Mai 2011

With graduation season rolling into view, students about to finish business school have
an especially good reason to celebrate: The job market for people with management edu-
cation degrees has improved—and employers expect conditions to get even better during
the months ahead, according to the results of a pair of annual international surveys
released today by the Graduate Management Admission Council (GMAC).

The research from GMAC shows that more business school graduates have been able to find
jobs before finishing their studies this year compared with the class of 2010. Moreover,
companies are increasingly turning their attention to growing their operations—and bring-
ing on new employees—after years of riding out rough economic conditions, GMAC resear-
chers found.

In a particularly encouraging sign, more than half (54 percent) of job-seeking respondents
to GMAC’s 2011 Global Management Education Graduate Survey had at least one job offer
at the time the research was conducted in March—weeks before graduation. By comparison,
just 32 percent of respondents to the survey last year who were looking for employment
had landed an offer.

Salaries are also on the rise. For example, graduates from two-year full-time MBA programs
reported a 73 percent increase in their post-degree base salary compared with what they
earned before beginning their studies, on average. This is an increase from the 64 percent
average salary boost seen by their peers in the class of 2010. Underlying the strengthening
job market for MBAs is an overall sense among employers that the economy has stabilized
enough that they can focus on growing their businesses, according to GMAC’s 2011 Cor-
porate Recruiters Survey. In fact, 67 percent of employers represented in the survey ex-
pect to hire new MBAs during the coming year, up from 62 percent in 2010 and 50 per-
cent in 2009. New hires in the United States can expect to earn an average base salary
of $91,433, up from $89,141 last year and $86,299 in 2009.

Companies appear to be shifting their overall goals. Fifty-eight percent of employers
said expanding operations represents a key priority for their firms, up 10 percent from
2009. Meanwhile, just 36 percent of participants in the survey said their organizations
were focused on overcoming economic challenges, down from 49 percent of respondents in

The 2011 GMAC Global Management Education Graduate Survey reflects responses from 4,794
graduating members of the class of 2011 at 156 graduate business schools worldwide. More
The 2011 GMAC Corporate Recruiters Survey includes responses from 1,509 employers from
905 companies in 51 countries. GMAC partnered with the European Foundation for Manage-
ment Development (EFMD) and the MBA Career Services Council (MBA CSC) to develop the
survey. A summary is available at

The Graduate Management Admission Council ( is a nonprofit education orga-
nization of leading graduate business schools and owner of GMAT exam, used by more than
5,000 graduate business and management programs worldwide. The GMAT exam—the only stan-
dardized test designed expressly for graduate business and management programs worldwide
—is continuously available at more than 530 test centers in over 110 countries.

Foto Bärbel Schwertfeger, MBA Journal

Über Bärbel Schwertfeger

Bärbel Schwertfeger ist Diplom-Psychologin und seit 1985 als freie Journalistin im Bereich Management, Weiterbildung und Personalentwicklung tätig.