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It is not what you know but who you know, goes the old saying. The truth of the adage is borne out by the support that recent MBA graduates have given each other since leaving the classroom.

In a survey of 1,390 MBA graduates from the class of 2009, almost half (47 per cent) reported having received a job offer through their MBA alumni network since completing their studies. Nearly one-third (32 per cent) of poll respondents have themselves employed someone as a result of contacts made through their alumni network, and three-quarters expect their connections to open doors for them in the future.

The strength of MBA alumni groups – which were cited by 51 per cent of graduates as the most important network to their career prospects – is illustrated by continued communication between peers. Of those polled, 72 per cent reported regular contact with their fellow students three years after graduation.

The importance of networking was not lost on graduates even when they were choosing business schools. Three-quarters (76 per cent) told the FT that networking was an important factor in their decision to study for a full-time MBA. For the majority (52 per cent), networking played a significant part in determining which schools they applied to. Among alumni of the top 10 schools of 2013, this figure was 66 per cent.

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