MBA Careers Data: What's Important to You?

Posted by: Louis Lavelle on April 15, 2011

As prospective business school students, are you interested in the number of companies that recruit on campus at your target schools? How about the number of companies that post jobs on school job boards?

Well, we thought this was useful information for applicants to have, and that’s why for many years we’ve included questions asking for that information in the surveys we send to b-schools every year, which eventually turn into our b-school profiles.

The schools, with exceedingly few exceptions, have never supplied this information, claiming that the data-reporting standards set by the MBA Career Services Council (CSC) don’t require them to report that information. The MBA CSC says it’s not relevant, and for a few years now has asked Bloomberg Businessweek to remove the questions from the survey, something I’ve resisted doing. Until now. When the next batch of surveys goes out in June, the good folks who complete them will not have to skip over those questions any longer. They’ll be gone.

Why should this matter to you? Well, if you’re a prospective applicant, this is vital information that you can no longer use to choose the school that’s right for you. It may not be the only thing that matters, but for most prospective students the relationships that schools have with recruiters and the number that actively recruit graduates each year is extremely important, never more so than during the economic downturn.

Nevertheless, I decided to remove the questions this week because so many schools marched in lock step to the CSC standards that there was no longer any point in asking them. The questions didn’t capture enough information for applicants to make side-by-side comparisons between schools.

Now don’t get me wrong, the schools still provide us (and you) with plenty of information, and we thank them for all the hard work they do to collect and report it. But they’re withholding something that I suspect a lot of you would probably like to see.

If you think this is important information that you need to make a decision, let us know—it might convince CSC to change its position. If it’s useless information you have no desire to see, tell us that too, and the matter ends here.

Reader Comments

concerned_mba_applicant

April 18, 2011 6:55 PM

What were the questions that were omitted? The point of asking these questions is to provide transparency and avoid the controversy that the law schools recently experienced.

I believe the key questions that needs to be answered should be broken down into two categories (US/Native Citizen, Internationals):
1) Top Full-Time Employers (at least 10 companies, no limit of minimum 3 students hired)
2) Top Internship Employers (at least 10 companies, no limit of minimum 3 students hired)
3) % of Students Who Received Offers Prior Graduation and the Number of Offers
4) % of Students Who Accepted Those Offers Prior Graduation
5) % of Students Who Received Offers Prior and After Graduation and the Number of Offers
6) % of Students Who Accepted Those Offers Prior and After Graduation
7) Average and Median Pre-MBA and Post-MBA Salary/Bonus
8) Industries of offers (Finance, Consulting, etc.)
9) Functions within those industries (e.g., Finance: PE, VC, Corp Strategy, S&T, IB, etc.)
10) Rolling Statistics from the past three years to measure improvement/lack of progress

Connie

April 18, 2011 8:17 PM

I can't believe no one else has commented yet. Of course it's extremely important information! And i'm surprised it's not a part of the CSC standards. Recruiting is one of the biggest factors to consider when choosing where to apply or attend.

BW's Louis Lavelle

April 19, 2011 8:30 AM

@concerned mba applicant: The questions that were omitted asked for (1) the NUMBER of companies recruiting on campus and (2) the NUMBER of companies posting full-time jobs on school job boards. All the other questions you mentioned are still asked have been for some time, and we have no intention of withdrawing them. The MBA CSC standards support all those questions (or else CSC hasn't objected to them) so they get answered very regularly by most schools, which we really appreciate. You can find the answers in each school's profile (http://www.businessweek.com/bschools/rankings/) or the comparator tool (http://tools.businessweek.com/BSchool_Comparator/). Thanks!
Louis Lavelle
Associate Editor
Bloomberg Businessweek

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