What Is The Minimum Expected Post-MBA Salary, Preferred Work Destinations – InsideIIM Recruitment Survey 2016 – Part 2

The monthly takeaway at the end of the month for a MBA graduate is an important factor to be considered before making the MBA decision or while applying to companies during placements. No wonder that companies that pay more generally attract more applications and a lot of theory around work-life balance and job satisfaction goes for a toss in the heat of final placements. In this part, we look at the minimum salary expectations of the graduating batch and the cities all our 3 sets of respondents want to work in.

It’s time to reveal our findings. This is year 5 of our Recruitment Survey and Recruiter Rankings.  The only platform that provides insight into what students and management professionals think. We look at their aspirations and motivations. We also come out with lists of the most desired recruiters across top business school campuses in India. These findings are based on surveying over 1200 students who answered over 25 questions in our questionnaire.

It is natural that after asking students about the cost of a MBA programme we ask them about their expected salaries on graduation!



Minimum Salary Expectations – Class of 2017

2 expected salary

(Our respondent data has a skew towards the top 20 schools of India. Hence, the expectation ranges are also keeping that in mind)

We have seen in Part 1 the increasing acceptability of higher fees for the MBA programme. It is but natural that students feel that they should be getting higher starting salaries too! As compared to 41% last year, only 21% would be happy with a post tax in hand salary of INR 80,000 to INR 100,000 per month from the graduating class of 2017. We see a clear rise across the brackets above 1 Lakh per month. We have seen a rise every year since we started this survey but the expectations have gone up more over the last 2 years. Students entering business school this year should keep in mind that there is a difference between expectations and reality.  There are less than 15 schools in the country that can boast of an average salary of INR 12 Lakhs. A lot of the ones that do will have a lower median salary as the average figure is obfuscated by outliers with astronomical salaries  converted from foreign currencies. The limited point is that less than 33% of the students of even these 15 schools from the Class of 2017 will actually bag a salary of more than INR 120,000 in hand per month irrespective of their expectations.

While forming your expectations you should factor in an Education Loan EMI of INR 30,000 per month and back calculate. It will vary ofcourse based on the specific school you get into but 30,000 is a good average to take. You can look at our story here on EMIs from 2012 to get an idea. You should also factor in any extra loan you may take for student exchange (costs between 3 to 5 Lacs depending on the location, exchange rate and your lifestyle).


Most Preferred Work Destinations for all 3 sets of respondents 2016 vs 2015

Aspirants & First Year Students
3.1 aspirants and first year

This category has the lowest amount of exposure to work life since a lot of them are freshers or have worked for too short a time before an MBA. However, their perceptions are built on mainstream media, movies and from what they have heard people around them say. No surprise that 3 out of 5 most preferred work cities lie outside India. This has been a feature since the inception of this survey – The desire to work abroad. Companies recognize this and a lot of them provide internships abroad during summers.

Class of 2017 (Graduating Class)

3.2 second year

This category of respondents has access to more data and they have also done their internships. Mumbai has always been the most preferred Indian city in our survey over the last 5 years. Bangalore comes in second among indian cities with Delhi being a distant third from an aspiration stand point. When we filter this data for women alone, Delhi’s rank goes down further.


3.3 post mba

One major difference we see is the drop in Bangalore’s rank as compared to last year. One reason could be that the excitement around the start-up scene in India has subsided and not many want to move laterally to Bangalore anymore or the ones in Bangalore are not so enamoured anymore with Bangalore. It is surprising that so many of the respondents prefer London this year despite knowing that neither are there many jobs up for grabs in the UK nor is the Visa policy very favourable. Things have only gone downhill post Brexit. It’s puzzling.

To read all stories in this series please click here. For previous years’ data click here

Team InsideIIM

We are the team behind your favourite platform.