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Rewards of Earning an MBA


Mid-career professionals considering an MBA will want to factor in market demand for the degree. Current estimates paint a bright career outlook for MBA graduates. The Graduate Management Admission Council estimated that nine in 10 employers plan to recruit MBAs in 2021.

The GMAC 2018 Alumni Perspectives Survey Report highlights the successful outcomes of nearly 11,000 business school alumni. These respondents decided to meet the economic challenges of a changing world by enrolling in an MBA program to redirect the course of their careers.

This recap of data from GMAC, the National Association of Colleges and Employers and U.S. News & World Report details how MBA alumni and their employers affirm that an MBA investment often reaps substantial rewards for professionals and their organizations.

Strong Hiring Prospects

This trend toward improving corporate performance and productivity is fueling the demand for business school graduates who have the well-rounded training and leadership capabilities that organizations need. Not only are a greater share of companies planning to hire business school graduates, but these employers plan to increase the number of recent MBA graduates they will hire going forward, expanding the number of positions for job seekers.

Polling results from GMAC showed excellent hiring projections and career prospects for MBA graduates:

  • 94% of the nearly 11,000 business school graduates surveyed by GMAC are currently employed.
  • 93% of employers expect the demand for business school graduates will "remain stable" or "increase" in the next five years.
  • 68% of employers in the technology sector agreed that executives on staff in leadership roles tend to hold master's-level business degrees.

These results were corroborated by U.S. News & World Report, which found that 88% of business school graduates were employed within three months of graduating. The remainder presumably includes entrepreneurs, graduates who went on to pursue other training or degrees and graduates who had not yet conducted a job search.

Satisfaction With Education and Professional Benefits

Many advanced degree programs outside of business produce qualified and successful professionals. Not all result in the overwhelming satisfaction on a few different fronts that MBA graduates seem to find.

  • 79% of master's-level business school alumni consider the value of their education as "outstanding" or "excellent."
  • Nine out of 10 business school grads say their decision to pursue a master's in management would not change based on "what they know now."
  • 89% of alumni say their degree is professionally rewarding.

Rising Earnings Trends

According to U.S. News & World Report, the average salary for alumni after graduating from a full-time program is in the six figures for these industries: consulting; financial services; technology; healthcare; media/entertainment; energy; retail; real estate; consumer packaged goods; transportation and logistics services; and manufacturing.
A few different sources show strong compensation trends for MBA graduates:

  • 73% of business school alumni say their degree is financially rewarding (GMAC, 2018).
  • The National Association of Colleges and Employers projected an average starting salary of $87,966 for MBA grads in 2021.
  • GMAC reported a $115,000 median yearly salary for MBA grads. The figure is $145,000 for MBA grads in consulting jobs (GMAC, 2020).

Whether you prioritize employment prospects, salary potential or job satisfaction, earning an MBA may be one of the most rewarding decisions you make in your career.

Learn more about Northwest Missouri State University's online MBA program.


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