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An annual survey of leading employers indicates that corporate demand for MBA graduates is on the up, improving the job prospects of this year’s graduates. According to the research, slightly more companies are looking to hire MBAs than last year and in larger numbers.

The Graduate Management Admission Council, with its partners – the European Foundation for Management Development and the MBA Career Services Council – surveyed 935 companies in 50 countries that recruit on business school campuses.

The poll found that 75 per cent of these employers plan to hire MBAs this year, up from the 71 per cent that ultimately recruited MBAs in 2012. Those that are recruiting expect to hire 15 MBA graduates on average, up from 11 that were hired last year.

These optimistic expectations are however tempered by the recruitment numbers reported by graduating students themselves.

In a parallel survey – also run by GMAC – of over 5,300 students completing their MBA degrees this year, 60 per cent of those seeking employment had received at least one job offer by the end of March. This compares with 62 per cent of graduates who had received offers by the same point last year.

This fall is largely attributable to the decline in offers received by students looking for positions in the financial sector, down from 61 per cent to 54 per cent this year.

The job market for business school graduates has recovered significantly since 2009, when only 43 per cent of outgoing MBA students reported to GMAC that they held early job offers.

Data collected for the FT’s annual Global MBA rankings has shown that the degree’s salary-enhancing power has declined steeply over the past decade. Students who left top schools in 2008 and 2009 gained only half the salary boost of their predecessors a decade earlier.


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