The QS TopMBA Jobs and Salary Trends Report 2010/11 notes the finance sector as hiring 22% more MBAs in 2010, and predicts a further increase of 11% in the coming year. MBA graduate hiring in the consulting sector also increased by 19% during 2010, and is set to increase by a further 37% during 2011. Experts predict MBA hiring in both sectors returning to pre-recession highs in the next two years.
The report surveyed over 5, 000 companies from 36 different countries and is conducted by the research team behind the QS World MBA Tour; an event bringing together MBA admissions directors, alumni and MBA applicants from around the world.
Nunzio Quacquarelli, director of the QS World MBA Tour says, "In 2008 and 2009, the finance sector suffered a recruiting downturn, but last year saw a rebound and hiring is expected to return to pre-crisis levels in the next two years.” He explains, "The major strategy and management consulting firms are looking to hire more MBAs this year. Consulting slowed to some degree over the same period, but did not suffer as much as it did following the dot-com crash.”
Top business schools, who saw demand for their MBA graduates dip in recent years, began to see improvements at the end of 2010. "After experiencing a significant decline in opportunities for MBA students between 2008 -2009, we saw a return to normal recruitment levels in the third quarter of 2010, which has been maintained throughout the year.” says Jacqueline Wilbur, senior director of the MBA Career Development Office at the Sloan School of Management, Massachusett Institute of Technology, "Management consultancies and investment banks are again in a war for talent in most markets.”
With demand for MBAs collapsing from 2001-2003, Goldman Sachs, Morgan Stanley and other global financial firms had cut MBA hiring by up to 80% in some offices. Diane Morgan, director of London Business School’s Career Service believes that banks are changing their hiring patterns, and are now "taking a longer-term view of their MBA hiring. Several of them made the mistake of cutting back in 2002 and were left with a big gap in talent when the markets picked up.”
The "war for talent” is back on from 2011. With hiring levels on the rise, MBA graduates of 2012 to 2014 are likely to benefit most from this future hiring peak.
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