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1.5 yrs exp. in Technology Consultancy (Big 4) - India

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1.5 yrs exp. in Technology Consultancy (Big 4) - India [#permalink] New post 15 Jul 2013, 23:29
Hi,

I am from India. My profile is as following:

Graduation:
GPA: 8.3 out of 10. (i.e. 3.32 out of 4)
Electrical Engineering, Jadavpur University (India)

Work Experience:
1 year as an analyst (will be 1.5 yrs as on January 2014) in a Big 4 company (Consultancy)
SAP based technology related. Client facing job.

Achievements:
Was within top 10 in school-leaving exam

Certification:
CFA Level 1 in June 2013

Extra-curricular activities:
Writing.
-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Interested in finance jobs. So would like to apply in institutes that have strong finance placement record.

GMAT: not taken yet. Expecting 740+.

-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Which schools do I have chances to get admission in? Please help.
_________________

I have a dream... bigger than all of my shattered dreams.

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Re: 1.5 yrs exp. in Technology Consultancy (Big 4) - India [#permalink] New post 16 Jul 2013, 05:08
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Hi naivelearner - thanks for asking for our input on your profile! As you know, you're coming from an oversubscribed pool of candidates, with the "Indian in IT" thing going on - however, it's clear that you're a strong performer and that is going to count for a LOT in this process. Your academics are solid and it looks like you landed a plum position after finishing your undergrad. This can help put you in a good starting position. The GMAT will matter too and a 740 would be a great help.

None of these things will guarantee you'll get in though; it will all depend on your pitch, the essays and goals and why you want an MBA, as well as your recommendations and how many examples of achievement you'll be able to present in the application.

You're definitely on the young side for many of the best-known finance MBAs. When people talk about the strongest schools for finance they typically are thinking of Columbia, Wharton, Booth, and LBS. All of those schools prefer more work experience, and especially because of your candidate pool, it's usually better to be hitting the school averages, which in this case is 5 years. You'll have to really impress the adcom if you're going to have a shot of getting in with less experience. Often these schools will reject a candidate on this issue alone and invite them to reapply when they have accrued more experience. So that's your biggest obstacle, probably.

Some other programs might be worth exploring, such as the Master's in Finance at MIT Sloan - it's designed for early-career professionals like yourself and might be the best way to make this transition. (The LBS MFin wouldn't be a fit, just FYI - each of these programs is designed differently so you'll need to research them specifically if you decide to pursue that option.)

We do see plenty of people using graduate school to go from an engineering role to a finance role, however it's a pretty big jump and you'll need to do all that you can to show how you're working towards it already. In that regard, your CFA Level I is definitely impressive and super helpful - that's going to be a major advantage for you in this process. We wrote about the CFA and the MBA on our blahg recently - apologies that these posts are behind the paywall but we're citing them here for anyone who's already a subscriber over on essaysnark.com:

* Breaking into finance: The CFA and the MBA
* The CFA and the MBA: Does it help you get in?

From your brief sketch it appears that you've got a lot going for you and we're encouraged. If you have other questions don't hesitate to ask - we hope to see you around here more!

EssaySnark
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Re: 1.5 yrs exp. in Technology Consultancy (Big 4) - India [#permalink] New post 17 Jul 2013, 02:36
Thanks a lot for your reply. I have a question. You said the avg work experience of the class is 5 years. But if I gather more work experience in technology consulting, won't it make my jump (to finance domain) harder? Or, should I shift to finance domain now? In that case, it may be the situation that I get a finance job in a company which is of lower stature compared to Big 4. Won't that affect also? Please help.

essaysnark wrote:
Hi naivelearner - thanks for asking for our input on your profile! As you know, you're coming from an oversubscribed pool of candidates, with the "Indian in IT" thing going on - however, it's clear that you're a strong performer and that is going to count for a LOT in this process. Your academics are solid and it looks like you landed a plum position after finishing your undergrad. This can help put you in a good starting position. The GMAT will matter too and a 740 would be a great help.

None of these things will guarantee you'll get in though; it will all depend on your pitch, the essays and goals and why you want an MBA, as well as your recommendations and how many examples of achievement you'll be able to present in the application.

You're definitely on the young side for many of the best-known finance MBAs. When people talk about the strongest schools for finance they typically are thinking of Columbia, Wharton, Booth, and LBS. All of those schools prefer more work experience, and especially because of your candidate pool, it's usually better to be hitting the school averages, which in this case is 5 years. You'll have to really impress the adcom if you're going to have a shot of getting in with less experience. Often these schools will reject a candidate on this issue alone and invite them to reapply when they have accrued more experience. So that's your biggest obstacle, probably.

Some other programs might be worth exploring, such as the Master's in Finance at MIT Sloan - it's designed for early-career professionals like yourself and might be the best way to make this transition. (The LBS MFin wouldn't be a fit, just FYI - each of these programs is designed differently so you'll need to research them specifically if you decide to pursue that option.)

We do see plenty of people using graduate school to go from an engineering role to a finance role, however it's a pretty big jump and you'll need to do all that you can to show how you're working towards it already. In that regard, your CFA Level I is definitely impressive and super helpful - that's going to be a major advantage for you in this process. We wrote about the CFA and the MBA on our blahg recently - apologies that these posts are behind the paywall but we're citing them here for anyone who's already a subscriber over on essaysnark:

...

From your brief sketch it appears that you've got a lot going for you and we're encouraged. If you have other questions don't hesitate to ask - we hope to see you around here more!

EssaySnark

_________________

I have a dream... bigger than all of my shattered dreams.

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Re: 1.5 yrs exp. in Technology Consultancy (Big 4) - India [#permalink] New post 17 Jul 2013, 09:42
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naivelearner wrote:
Thanks a lot for your reply. I have a question. You said the avg work experience of the class is 5 years. But if I gather more work experience in technology consulting, won't it make my jump (to finance domain) harder? Or, should I shift to finance domain now? In that case, it may be the situation that I get a finance job in a company which is of lower stature compared to Big 4. Won't that affect also? Please help.


Great questions.

First off, the type of company you work for does not matter in the context of your MBA application. What matters is what you've done in whatever job you've held - contributions made, accomplishments and achievements and wins that you've pulled off (in whatever capacity that means for you / your role), how you've had an impact. The bschools literally do not care if it's in a big brand-name company or some no-name tiny startup. The only small way that the reputation of a company matters is that it can be a sign that you were a top performer in school, if you landed a plum assignment when you graduated - often those bigger companies are more competitive and they go for the best candidates, so that can be a small indication that you have a longer track record of being ahead of your peers. Once you land the job though, it doesn't matter, all is equal and the schools will value anyone's contributions in their careers way more than the fact that they're at a well-known company.

In terms of post-MBA employment and making a big jump from IT to finance: Of course, if you have existing experience in finance, it's going to make it much much easier to get a job in that field after bschool. If you can facilitate that transition NOW then you will be more attractive to employers coming out with your MBA, and you will also be much more attractive to the adcoms in trying to get in. Doing that transition now will give you valuable experience in the industry and it also proves that this is a goal you can attain. Lots of people want to go into finance but not everyone is successful at it - it's very competitive and it's totally different from IT/engineering, so there may be some doubts against you. If you do it now then you are proving you can do it. It will also increase your earnings potential post-MBA; the companies will pay someone less when they have less experience. You would be setting yourself up for greater success all around.

In terms of the 5-year average at top schools: That's an average. The quality of your work experience matters much more than the quantity. If you feel you're ready for bschool now and can make the big jump you're talking about with the resources you have at your disposal today, you should absolutely go ahead with your applications. You're the only one who can decide that. The schools admit people along a vast spectrum of ages and experience levels.

Good questions. Hopefully this helps, let us know if you have more follow-ups.

EssaySnark
_________________

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Re: 1.5 yrs exp. in Technology Consultancy (Big 4) - India [#permalink] New post 17 Jul 2013, 23:15
This one is really helpful. Thanks. :)

essaysnark wrote:
naivelearner wrote:
Thanks a lot for your reply. I have a question. You said the avg work experience of the class is 5 years. But if I gather more work experience in technology consulting, won't it make my jump (to finance domain) harder? Or, should I shift to finance domain now? In that case, it may be the situation that I get a finance job in a company which is of lower stature compared to Big 4. Won't that affect also? Please help.


Great questions.

First off, the type of company you work for does not matter in the context of your MBA application. What matters is what you've done in whatever job you've held - contributions made, accomplishments and achievements and wins that you've pulled off (in whatever capacity that means for you / your role), how you've had an impact. The bschools literally do not care if it's in a big brand-name company or some no-name tiny startup. The only small way that the reputation of a company matters is that it can be a sign that you were a top performer in school, if you landed a plum assignment when you graduated - often those bigger companies are more competitive and they go for the best candidates, so that can be a small indication that you have a longer track record of being ahead of your peers. Once you land the job though, it doesn't matter, all is equal and the schools will value anyone's contributions in their careers way more than the fact that they're at a well-known company.

In terms of post-MBA employment and making a big jump from IT to finance: Of course, if you have existing experience in finance, it's going to make it much much easier to get a job in that field after bschool. If you can facilitate that transition NOW then you will be more attractive to employers coming out with your MBA, and you will also be much more attractive to the adcoms in trying to get in. Doing that transition now will give you valuable experience in the industry and it also proves that this is a goal you can attain. Lots of people want to go into finance but not everyone is successful at it - it's very competitive and it's totally different from IT/engineering, so there may be some doubts against you. If you do it now then you are proving you can do it. It will also increase your earnings potential post-MBA; the companies will pay someone less when they have less experience. You would be setting yourself up for greater success all around.

In terms of the 5-year average at top schools: That's an average. The quality of your work experience matters much more than the quantity. If you feel you're ready for bschool now and can make the big jump you're talking about with the resources you have at your disposal today, you should absolutely go ahead with your applications. You're the only one who can decide that. The schools admit people along a vast spectrum of ages and experience levels.

Good questions. Hopefully this helps, let us know if you have more follow-ups.

EssaySnark

_________________

I have a dream... bigger than all of my shattered dreams.

Re: 1.5 yrs exp. in Technology Consultancy (Big 4) - India   [#permalink] 17 Jul 2013, 23:15
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