How Much Do Business School Alumni Earn?

As b-school alumni ascend the career ladder, a larger share of their total compensation comes from non-salary sources.

Apr 11, 2017

B-School Outcomes

Business school alumnus

Boosting their earnings potential is one of the top motivations for individuals considering a graduate business degree. According to the 2016 Prospective Students Survey, most prospective students worldwide (57%) and in the United States (75%) specifically report being motivated by a desire to increase their salary potential. What salary range can they expect after earning their degree?

The results of the 2017 Alumni Perspectives Survey highlight the long-term financial returns of a graduate business education based on responses from nearly 15,000 alumni. In total, 75 percent of alumni respondents agree that their degree provided them with opportunities for quicker career advancement and 82 percent agree that their degree increased their earnings power.

On average, the total compensation package for graduate business school alumni ranges from a median of US$75,513 for an entry-level position to US$440,122 for a c-suite executive. As alumni move up the career ladder, a greater proportion of their compensation comes from non-salary sources, such as bonuses. For example, c-suite alumni—in positons such as CEO, CFO, and COO—earn only 62 percent of their total annual compensation from base salary, on average. Business school alumni in entry-level positions, on the other hand, earn 85 percent of their total compensation from base salary.

Compensation graph

For additional data and analysis on business school alumni compensation, including detailed breakdowns by industry and program type, download the 2017 Alumni Perspectives Survey Report at