The second part of the survey is about getting really serious with your career – it has all the inside dope on a host of issues concerning B school students, professionals and employers. Our earlier classification of respondents into three buckets remains in place, – MBA aspirants plus first year students, second year students, and post-MBA professionals. However, in this stage of the survey, the questions pertain to career choices – along the dimensions of domain, salary expectations, job satisfaction etc. Therefore, to ensure very high-quality data, we have allowed only second year students and post-MBA salaried professionals to respond to these questions. Use the knowledge about career decisions made by others, to make a better decision in your career. These are decisions that will stay with you for life. You don’t have to follow the herd.
We cover the following five areas
1. Minimum Salary Expectations
2. Best Pre-placement talks
3. Most important factors for applying to a company
4. Preferred domains, Summer internships and propensity to switch
5. Job satisfaction
Minimum Salary Expectations – Class of 2015
So what is the minimum salary you will have to offer to an MBA grad from the class of 2014, assuming that you want to hire him to join your organization – large or small? And on the other side of the interviewing table – as a candidate – what is the maximum salary level you can bargain for without jeopardizing your chances of getting hired?
The largest group of respondents (more than 44%) have put their in-hand take home salary expectations in the range of Rs. 80,000 to Rs, 100,000. This is remarkably similar to last year (see last year’s report). However, take a look at last year’s graph and you will notice that the expectations from the Class of 2015 are significantly higher. Last year, roughly two-thirds of respondents were clustered around the Rs. 60,000 to Rs. 1,00,000 bracket. This year, as high as 70% of the respondents are clustered around the Rs. 80,000 to 1,20,000 bracket. It is clear that the good placement season of 2014 has increased expectations across campuses.
Best Pre-placement Talks
Which companies delivered the best pre-placement talks across campuses in the 2012-2013 season?
HUL is the clear winner for the best pre-placement talk, followed by McKinsey. This year’s pre-placement talk results reflect a more even balance across domains. Usual suspects like Mahindra and Mahindra, Reckitt Benckiser have done well again, while TAS is slightly lower down the list than expected. The big new entrant in the top pre-placement talks list is Goldman Sachs – replacing Citi as the banking & finance company with the best pre-placement talk. Do bear in mind that the scores reflect voting across all campuses, whereas some of these companies would have visited only a select few campuses. Such companies, even if the make great pre-placement talks, will not come out on top of this list.
Most preferred career domains – Class of 2015
Sales and Marketing again wins out by a handsome margin. The trend is more accentuated as compared to last year – where only 26% of the respondents said they would prefer a career in Sales and Marketing. This year, that percentage is a whopping 33%. Which are the domains that have lost at the expense of Sales and Marketing? Finance finds itself losing favour – from 18% of respondents preferring it last year, we see only 14% of respondents favouring it this year. The preference for consulting has reduced slightly from nearly 21% to 19%. The preference for general management continues to increase consistently – from 12% two years ago, it is now nearly 18%. Human Resource finds itself out of favour with less than 3% of respondents choosing it.
The big stories are the declining preference for finance (definite trend) and consulting (less clear trend), and the growing preference for general management (definite trend).
Our take is that students have become more realistic in their assessment, and this is leading them to try and match their aspirations with their existing skills sets. The preference for the so-called high-flying finance and strategy consulting jobs is not very strong, because these jobs are few in number, and more and more people are realizing that there are other ways to have a meaningful career, by making use of one’s already existing skill sets.
Most preferred career domains – Class of 2016
This unmistakeable trend has been holding strong for the last three years. For the typical first year MBA or the MBA aspirant, the degree means a career in management consulting or investment banking. What else can explain the pride of place enjoyed by consulting and finance on this list? What can account for the lowly position of sales and marketing in this list. Sales and marketing is for lowly door-to-door sales agents peddling inferior products who are paid for putting up with verbal abuse from irate customers.
It takes a year for perceptions to change. To realize that there aren’t enough Finance and Consulting jobs for everyone. That there is a hierarchy within finance jobs – front end, middle office and back end. And there is a similar caste system within consulting jobs and firms. And Sales and Marketing is something that everybody has to do, after all. We confidently predict that when the class of 2016 is polled for its preferences next year, their aspirations will change, taking into account the learnings from B school.
Summer internships – Domains and Propensity to change – Class of 2014
Summer Internship domains
The data on summer internships of the batch of 2015 shows a clear predominance of marketing profiles in summer internship. Two out of five people had interned in marketing roles. Of the remaining fields, general management saw a slight increase from 6.2% last year to 10.9% this year.
Summer internships – propensity to change – Class of 2014
We asked the batch of 2014, how likely are you to switch your domain from the one you did your summer internship in. Here are the responses.
Again, the greatest segment of respondents (nearly a third) has stated that they are highly unlikely to change their domain. The overall figure for likelihood of changing domains from summer internship is 45.6%. We see an interesting trend in this parameter –the percentage of students that did not want to change domains has decreased from 58% in 2012, to 50.2% in 2013, to 45.6% in 2014. We wonder, are successive batches getting more and more confused? Or is it that choices are increasing? The year 2013 was a bit of a bloodbath in placements, and things have steadily improved since then. Is that why the recruitment survey of 2012 (which would reflect the placement expectations of the batch of 2013) showed such low inclination to change domains?
After two years, it finally looks as if people are ready to experiment with domains and profiles over the two years of their MBA. Could this be an indicator of better placements to come?
Entrepreneurial Inclinations – Class of 2014
Very few in the Class of 2015 have caught the entrepreneurship bug. Less than 6% answered that they would start a company on graduation. These figures have been at the same level for the last two years, and it is clear that the MBA by itself is not really a driver for entrepreneurship. Hardly anyone attends an MBA to become an entrepreneur.
Career Aspirations – batch of 2014
We asked the class of 2015, to rate their priorities among the following factors while applying to a company
(a) Compensation (b) Brand perception of the company (c) Your career plans (d) Quality of pre-placement talk (e) Opinion of Seniors/Alumni
Again, career plans matter more than any other criterion in deciding to join the company. This has been consistently observed over the last two years. For the millennial generation, it is not about the money, it is about career plan and growth. We millennials are more concerned about how the company can fit into our plans, rather than us fitting into the company’s scheme of things. The results are consistent with the analysis and findings of this article on InsideIIM – talking about the shifting paradigms of recruitment consulting.
We still believe that the millennials aren’t exactly sure what they want with their career, they just happen to be an individualistic lot, focussed on their own goals and aspirations. Also, companies that spend lakhs on pre-placement talks need to rethink if it is enough return on investment.
The class of 2015 gives greater priority to compensation over company brand perception. A clear case of money speaks.
Job satisfaction – post MBA professionals
Every job offers a mixed bag in terms of quality of work, compensation and work-life balance. To understand the level of job satisfaction among post MBA professionals, we have asked them to rate their satisfaction levels among the following five dimensions:
(a) Growth prospects (b) quality of work (c) work environment (d) match between expectations and reality of job profile (e) work-life balance (f) compensation
(a) Growth Prospects
(c) Work Environment
(d) Match between expectations and reality of job profile
A quick glance at the statistics this year shows some differences from last year. Last year, we had noted that the percentage of respondents rating explicitly themselves satisfied (i.e. satisfied or very satisfied) was greater than 50% in all the metrics being measured. That is not the case this year. This year, we find that more than 50% of the respondents are satisfied with growth prospects, quality of work, work environment and work-life balance. However, only 45% are satisfied with compensation and the match between expectations and reality of the job profile. It looks as if compensation and mismatch of expectations and reality are the big pain points for most professionals in their careers. If we measure along the dissatisfaction dimension, again it is the mismatch of expectations and reality that is the greatest problem for most professionals (30% of respondents are reported this as their cause of discontent in their jobs).
More such interesting slices of information will be revealed every day this week.
Read the first part of the InsideIIM Recruitment 2014 Survey here
Read the results of the InsideIIM Recruitment 2013 Survey here