How Are Alumni Doing: Compensation, Work-Life Balance, And More | InsideIIM Recruitment Survey 2018

Some of the major reasons why anyone pursues an MBA include the growth prospects and the jump in compensation. Like any other professional degree, an MBA offers you a job at the end of the course, and there are certain expectations attached to these jobs in terms of work-life balance, quality of work, and the environment at work amongst other things. But are these expectations met in a job after an MBA?

To find out, the InsideIIM Recruitment Survey asked post-MBA professionals to mention their levels of satisfaction/dissatisfaction with various components of their job. Alumni rated these components on a scale of 1 to 5 – 1 indicating complete dissatisfaction and 5 indicating that things are going well.

Here are the findings of the survey.

How Satisfied Are Alumni With The Quality of Work & The Environment at Work?

When it comes to the work environment, over half of the respondents are satisfied or very satisfied with their jobs. This is an increase from the previous year, although over 1/5th of the respondents are either somewhat dissatisfied or extremely unhappy, also an increase from the previous year. The results for the environment at work have remained largely the same over a period of 5 years, indicating the B-school students can worry less about dealing with office politics, a megalomaniac of a boss, or an insubordinate employee – at least that is what the data suggests.

When compared to last year, there is a significant increase in the percentage of respondents who are satisfied with the quality of work that they are engaged in. Over half the respondents are either happy or very happy with the kind of work that they are doing in their current roles.

Also to be noted is that over 1/5th of the respondents are either extremely dissatisfied or somewhat dissatisfied with the quality of work. However, when compared to data from 5 years back, the level of dissatisfaction has seen a decline of 5 percentage points.

Also read our report on – The Most Desirable General Management Recruiters in 2018

Environment At Work
2018 2017 2016 2015 2014
Satisfied 56% 55% 62% 56% 55%
Dissatisfied 22% 17% 17% 20% 22%
Neutral 22% 28% 21% 24% 23%

Quality of Work
  2018 2017 2016 2015 2014
Satisfied 54% 49% 54% 54% 52%
Dissatisfied 22% 21% 24% 24% 27%
Neutral 24% 30% 22% 22% 21%

Was There A Match In Job Expectations & The Reality, And How Conducive Is The Job/Company To Career Growth?

‘In this role, you will be expected to:
– Study and analyse existing business trends and provide insights to improve or optimize business efforts (a.k.a. sit in front of an Excel sheet for hours)
– Communicate business results or interpretations across stakeholders in different functions (a.k.a. unimportant meetings with no constructive conclusion)
– Deliver ad-hoc requirements with short turn-around times and/or under frequent change of understanding (a.k.a., we have no idea what we are doing and neither will you)
  Are you up for the challenge?’

Job descriptions may sound glamorous, but expectations can be a complete contrast from the reality of a job. In our report on How Recruiters Can Make The Hiring Process Better, we discovered that recruiters have a long way to go in communicating effectively with MBA students who are not at all satisfied with the information they receive around the role requirements, selection criteria, and in-hand salary. This can severely affect an employee’s performance. So what do MBA alumni think?

According to the survey, 52% of the respondents are either satisfied or very satisfied with the match between expectations and reality. This information can at least mitigate the fear of B-school students struggling to understand what they can expect at their job. The percentage of positive responses has seen a hump from last year and is the highest ever in 5 years by a significant margin. Clearly, while the communication may be sub-par, but recruiters are not in the business of hoodwinking their employees.

Also read – How Can Campus Recruiters Make The Hiring Process Better At B-schools – MBA Students Speak

When it comes to growth prospects, more than half of the respondents find some scope of career advancement at their current workplace, although almost a quarter of the respondents see some obstacles along the way.

Match Between Expectations & Reality
  2018 2017 2016 2015 2014
Satisfied 52% 49% 52% 48% 45%
Dissatisfied 23% 19% 23% 30% 30%
Neutral 25% 32% 25% 22% 25%

Growth Prospects
  2018 2017 2016 2015 2014
Satisfied 53% 47% 64% 48% 52%
Dissatisfied 24% 24% 18% 21% 26%
Neutral 23% 29% 18% 31% 22%

How Good/Bad Is Work-Life Balance, And Is The Compensation Offered Satisfactory?

While 61% is a heartening figure, it is the lowest over a period of 5 years when it comes to work-life balance. It is a fact – Indian employees in cities are some of the most overworked in the world, pulling 53-54 hours a week as compared to a global average of 43 hours. It is interesting to note, however, that just 15% of the respondents actually feel that work-life balance is not maintained or is non-existent from their jobs (consultants, we’re looking at you). Almost 1/4th of the respondents are somewhat okay with their current work-life balance. It can be concluded from this data that working late hours and on weekends may actually be an exception and not the rule, and even management consulting firms such as BCG and McKinsey are working towards improving this aspect of the Consulting domain.

Also read our report on – The Most Desirable Consulting Recruiters For MBA Students & Alumni

Here comes the part of this report that is most important to all stakeholders – is the money enough? Yes, it is!

When it comes to compensation, 57% of the respondents are happy or more than happy with the amount credited to their account at the end of every month. This is a massive jump of 11 percentage points when compared to the results 5 years back when less than half of the respondents were dissatisfied with their pay package. Data suggests that over half a decade, at least some companies have established a correlation between wages and productivity, and are willing to dish out more money to keep their employees satisfied. This is also corroborated by the decrease in the number of dissatisfied alumni by 11 percentage points when compared to 2014.

However, it must be noted that compared to last year, there has been a drop in the satisfaction levels when it comes to compensation. But this may not necessarily be inferred as utter dissatisfaction. Rather, the percentage of respondents who are somewhat happy with their compensation (Neutral) has increased when compared to last year and the percentage of dissatisfied respondents has decreased, implying that even though the compensation is not a big problem, there is still an expectation of a higher pay package.

Also read our report on – The Most Desirable Technology & E-commerce Recruiters On B-school Campuses

It is also important to disclose that the majority of Alumni respondents for this survey (73%) belong to the so-called tier-1 Indian MBA institutes, so the results may be skewed towards high levels of satisfaction due to huge packages offered at these institutes. Even so, for the 1/4th minority of respondents from so-called tier-2 and tier-3 institutes, compensation does not appear to be an issue.

Work-Life Balance
  2018 2017 2016 2015 2014
Satisfied 61% 66% 65% 66% 62%
Dissatisfied 15% 13% 17% 13% 18%
Neutral 24% 21% 18% 21% 20%

  2018 2017 2016 2015 2014
Satisfied 57% 61% 66% 54% 46%
Dissatisfied 15% 20% 13% 22% 26%
Neutral 28% 19% 21% 24% 28%

Overall Results

The survey finds that when the various components of a post-MBA job are compared, work-life balance is something that the respondents are happiest with, especially respondents belonging to the batches passing out from 2009 to 2013. Next is compensation, followed by the environment at work that is highly rated by MBA alumni.

There appears to be a mismatch in the expectations and reality of the job profiles offered, as well as growth prospects (which may be interconnected). Overall, the average score on a scale of 1-5 is just over 3.51, clearly indicating that there is still scope for improvement in the working conditions of post-MBA professionals.

Overall Class of 2018-2014 Class of 2013-2009
Work-Life Balance 3.70 3.69 3.71
Compensation 3.55 3.55 3.56
Environment at work 3.52 3.51 3.48
Quality of Work 3.49 3.49 3.47
Growth Prospects 3.42 3.40 3.40
Match between expectations & reality of job profile 3.41 3.40 3.39
Total 3.51 3.51 3.50

Read all the reports in the InsideIIM Recruitment Survey (2018) series here.

For information on which companies the alumni of top B-schools are working in, you may also like to read our InsideIIM Alumni Report series.

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Rucha Kulkarni

You guys are doing a great job! For aspirants like me , who are confused between the expectations and job reality after an MBA, it seems to be optimistic scenario.

Team InsideIIM

Hi Rucha!
Thank you for your kind words!
Keeps us motivated.
Glad you found the story helpful. 🙂
Good luck!