Top 10 industry experiences and industry preferences of candidates in our network

Through the partnerships MBA Focus maintains with leading graduate business schools and professional associations, we are able to capture data on more than 85,000 MBA students and alumni around the world. As candidates register and complete their career profiles, the listed demographics, experiences, preferences, and qualifications in our database give us the opportunity to explore the growing pool of diverse MBA talent that exists in our network. Along with the top 10 industry experiences and top 10 industry preferences of these candidates, here is an excerpt from the Executive Summary to give a high level overview of last year’s industry related data:

For first-year students, graduating students, and alumni, the Consulting, Finance and Technology-related sectors stand out as the most popular industries on the candidate profiles in our network. In fact, the only other industries that appear in any of the top 10 industry preferences and top 10 industry experiences lists below are Nonprofits & Social Enterprises, Government, Retail and Education. Nonprofits & Social Enterprises appear 3 times below, and ranks 3rd most popular in experiences and 9th most popular in preferences for first-year MBAs. And then it also appears once in graduating MBA’s industry rankings, list as 4th for experience. This shows a higher interest in Nonprofits & Social Enterprises in the younger generations, hinting towards a growing popularity in the future.

Additionally, 18 out of 20 of the combined top 10 industry preference and experience rankings for both second-years and alumni are Consulting, Financial and Technology related, while 16 out of the combined top 10 rankings for first-years are related to those industries. First-years, in this regard, are showing more variance in their industry-related data.

Overall, Finance is the number one industry experience for all three populations, and Consulting is the number one industry preference for both student populations. Finance also ranks number one for alumni industry preference. Looking past Consulting, Finance, and Technology, we see that Consumer Packaged Goods is the next most popular overall industry preference for all three populations. Overall industry experience data shows Transportation and Consumer Packaged Goods nearly tied at 4th most popular for alumni, although these both rank a whole 10% lower, approximately, than the 3rd most popular industry, Technology. And again we see an upward trend in Nonprofits & Social Enterprises, this ranking 4th for industry experience in both student populations.

Here are the top 10 industry experiences and indsutry preferences of the students in our network during the 2013-2014 academic year:

Graduating Students - Industry Experiences:

  • 1. Consulting, Other: 12.6%
  • 2. Financial, Other: 10.9%
  • 3. Consulting, Strategy: 10.7%
  • 4. Nonprofits & Social Enterprises: 10.5%
  • 5. Investment Banking / Brokerage: 9.9%
  • 6. Software: 9.3%
  • 7. Technology, Other: 8.1%
  • 8. Investment Management: 8.0%
  • 9. Internet Services / E-Commerce: 7.9%
  • 10. Retail: 7.8%

Graduating Students - Industry Preferences:

  • 1. Consulting, Other: 27.8%
  • 2. Consulting, Strategy: 26.7%
  • 3. Private Equity: 21.3%
  • 4. Technology, Other: 20.3%
  • 5. Venture Capital: 18.2%
  • 6. Financial, Other: 17.6%
  • 7. Investment Management: 16.7%
  • 8. Internet Services / E-Commerce: 15.9%
  • 9. Management: 15.8%
  • 10. Investment Banking / Brokerage: 15.8%

First-Year Students - Industry Experiences:

  • 1. Investment Banking / Brokerage: 11.2%
  • 2. Consulting, Other: 10.8%
  • 3. Nonprofits & Social Enterprises: 10.6%
  • 4. Financial, Other: 9.8%
  • 5. Software: 8.2%
  • 6. Consulting Strategy: 7.8%
  • 7. Education: 7.6%
  • 8. Internet Services / E-Commerce: 7.4%
  • 9. Investment Management: 7.1%
  • 10. Local / State / Federal: 6.6%

First Year Students - Industry Preferences:

  • 1. Consulting, Other: 26.7%
  • 2. Consulting, Strategy: 25.1%
  • 3. Private Equity: 21.8%
  • 4. Internet Services / E-Commerce: 19.3%
  • 5. Venture Capital: 19.0%
  • 6. Financial, Other: 18.7%
  • 7. Technology, Other: 18.5%
  • 8. Investment Banking / Brokerage: 16.3%
  • 9. Nonprofits & Social Enterprises: 15.9%
  • 10. Investment Management: 15.8%

Interested in learning more about the candidates in our network, including the top ten industry experiences and preferences of MBA alumni? Request access to our full 2014 Employer Demand Analysis Report!




Lauren Kleban

Lauren joined MBA Focus in the summer of 2013, to help plan, produce, and implement both industry and product-related communications. Primarily responsible for copywriting, Lauren creates consistent and strategic messaging throughout marketing and sales material. By applying creative marketing concepts, she helps MBA Focus to build and maintain its brand, while promoting its exclusive network, recruitment technology, and career management tools. Lauren graduated from The Ohio State University in 2013, where she obtained a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration with a specialization in Marketing.

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