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# Applying to the IIMs - Advice ?

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Applying to the IIMs - Advice ? [#permalink]  21 Sep 2007, 13:21
1
KUDOS
Hi,

I'm new to this forum and I am grateful for all the support, advice and material available for people new to the process, such as myself. My decision to take the GMAT has been a very recent one, and I am scrambling to get myself prepared in time to meet the admission cut off dates for this season.

I am a recent graduate from college in New York with a BS in Electrical Engineering and a concentration in Microelectronics, but during my college years I realized I was more interested in economics/international relations/policy than core engineering itself. Anyway, to make a long story short, I am looking to make a transition from engineering to management consulting or a similar industry. I graduated last May and have since joined a technology consulting firm, albeit as a business analyst. Though the job is engaging, its not really what I'm looking for. The only way for me to make that jump is an MBA.

Now if you consider my lack of work ex (I will have 1 year if I start with an MBA next fall), my interest in working in Asia, my GPA and hopefully a decent GMAT score (I think I can get around 700, though my target score is a lot higher), I think the best decision for me would be to apply to the IIM's. I am only looking at IIM Ahmedabad, Bangalore and Calcutta. I am aware for the CAT/GMAT difference. Since I have been studying in the US for the past 4 years I am eligible as an NRI/Overseas Candidate.

Can anyone who is also looking at these schools or has previously applied to them share some information on :

1.average GMAT scores,
2.average work ex expected from international candidates,
3.tentative dates for GD/PI,
4.Roughly when they get back to you after receiving the applications
5.Anything else you think I need to know about applying to these schools?

I am probably going to give the GMAT in the first week of Nov. I believe it takes about 20 days to get the official scores, and that should give me enough time to submit all three applications.

Any help in my application process will be greatly appreciated. Thanks !
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Being an Indian , let me give you some of my opinions on IIMs.
If you want to stay and work in India, then yes IIMs are the best bet as their reputation is great. Nothing beats IIMs in India.

However if you want to return to US and work there for few years then i would definitely suggest you to try for top grade US schools. One thing which IIMs lack is diversity and if you dont care much about this then you can go for it. Also IIMs have large percentage of younger people ( less than 3 yrs exp ) and lot many freshers who come in thorugh CAT.

I dont know much about the average GMAT scores, but yes you need to be on the higher end. MAy be somewhere near 750 if you are an indian. You can also try going through CAT. Its lot cheaper than GMAT ( less than 50 USD), but lot difficult. Just see whichever suits you.

Regarding dates, i think you can write to them and you will get info from the school itself. Goodluck
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- I am interested in shifting base from North America over to Asia and that is one of the reasons I am looking into the IIM's.
- Since I'm interested in working in Asia, or atleast being based out of it, it doesn't make economic sense to apply to a top US school. It will take too long for my investment to break even, before I can even think of leaving the States.
- I can't give the CAT as I am a US citizen and I have been living out of the US. The CAT is only for resident Indians, and knowing how competitive it is, perhaps the GMAT (though the only option available for me) will be an easier way in.
- Yes, the lack of diversity is a problem, but then again I don't quite have significant work experience. But, I'm looking to change industries and the only way possible is through an MBA.

But quite honestly, I'm not really sure I've made up my mind a hundred percent. I mean, if I get invited for the GD/PI, then I will really sit down and think about it. For now, I'm just looking to get admitted.
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I agree with trahul4.

IIMs are not pretty competitive in the international scene. But if u r aimed at doing a good job in INDIA then yes u might want to take a chance.

Else i advice u to take a closer look at other internationally ranked programs in Asia..
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Re: Applying to the IIMs - Advice ? [#permalink]  25 Dec 2007, 20:38
Hi. My comments are in CAPITALS below.
Keep in mind that although I'm Indian, I've lived in the US and Europe for the last 10 years. As such, my knowledge is spotty. However, I did get calls for GD/PI for 2 of the IIMs when I was back in India - a long time ago. I didn't take them up, for various reasons.

sandipan.mondal wrote:
Hi,

1.average GMAT scores, 700-PLUS IS PROBABLY THE MINIMUM.
2.average work ex expected from international candidates, IIM'S DO NOT VALUE WORK EXPERIENCE TO THE EXTENT THAT US/EUROPEAN SCHOOLS DO. THEY PREFER YOUNG GUYS. YOU'RE OK HERE.
3.tentative dates for GD/PI, USUALLY THE CAT IS IN DEC EVERY YEAR AND GD/PI IS IN MARCH THE FOLLOWING YEAR
4.Roughly when they get back to you after receiving the applications I DON'T KNOW
5.Anything else you think I need to know about applying to these schools? YOU'RE A US CITIZEN, ALTHOUGH ORIGINALLY INDIAN. I'D SELL THE US CITIZEN PART IF POSSIBLE - THAT WILL KEEP YOU OUT OF A FAR MORE COMPETIOTIVE POOL IF YOU WERE CONSIDERED TO BE INDIAN. UNFORTUNATELY, BEING INDIAN PUTS YOU IN THE MOST COMPETITIVE POOL.

I am probably going to give the GMAT in the first week of Nov. WHO ARE YOU GOING TO GIVE THE GMAT TO? SOMEONE WITH A PLATE? HMMM YOU "TAKE" THE GMAT OR "APPEAR FOR" THE GMAT, YOU DON'T "GIVE" THE GMAT.

I believe it takes about 20 days to get the official scores, and that should give me enough time to submit all three applications. CORRECT. UNLESS YOU SEND THE SCORES ELECTRONICALLY, IN WHICH CASE IT TAKES 2 BUSINESS DAYS. FOR THIS TO HAPPEN, THE RECIPIENT SCHOOL WOULD ALSO NEED TO BE SET UP TO RECEIVE SCORES ELECTRONICALLY. I THINK THE IIM'S ARE SET UP FOR THIS.

Any help in my application process will be greatly appreciated. Thanks !

Last edited by rk4g63 on 23 Feb 2008, 14:44, edited 2 times in total.
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I'd like to add a note for Indian Applicants -

In my opinion, this is the toughest application pool, just from numbers. I'm performing a very simplistic analysis below - in reality it's more complex. But use the analysis in relative terms only, to compare between countries.

You see, every school has a certain fixed percentage of applicants they will allow from a certain country. Let's say India, Germany and Poland are given 10% each (Keep in mind that US/European schools want diversity over everything else - they really don't want 500 Indian IT engineers with GMAT scores above 750). Lets' say the total intake is 500 for a hypothetical school.

The total number of applicants from Germany may be 400-500.
Hence, the Germans are competing for 50 seats from an application pool, of 500 = 10% acceptance ratio.

Now let's say the total number of applicants from Poland is 100. Hence the acceptance ratio is 50%.

The total number of Indian applicants is anywhere from 5000 to 10000.
The acceptance ratio is now 50/5000 = 1% to 0.5%.

THAT's the problem for Indian applicants. In addition, the fact that 95% of them are IT guys doesn't help their case at all.

Good luck everyone.
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Re: Applying to the IIMs - Advice ? [#permalink]  06 Feb 2008, 23:07
1
KUDOS
I have completed my mba from the IIM's and let me tell you that a lot of us are looking towards doing a second MBA.

While we do have good placements in India and abroad, diversity in the batch is a huge issue. Over 85% are engineers and male/female ratio is not much to speak about.

The experience of batch is low compared to any global MBA institution as articulated in the posts above.

However it would help you immensely if you came down and looked at the infrastructure and all.

I would like to qualify the above statements by the fact that only the brightest do get in. Your peer group will keep you on your toes and would provide a good learning experience.
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Re: Applying to the IIMs - Advice ? [#permalink]  22 Feb 2008, 15:11
its great to hear an iim grad speak straight..kudos..

yes I've heard that the diversity is like 9:1 for It:non-IT which is bad
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Re: Applying to the IIMs - Advice ? [#permalink]  23 Feb 2008, 14:40
arakhanna wrote:
I have completed my mba from the IIM's and let me tell you that a lot of us are looking towards doing a second MBA.

One question - Why?
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Re: Applying to the IIMs - Advice ? [#permalink]  15 Apr 2008, 11:19
I think some consideration should be give to ISB which has come on in leaps and bounds. It is designed to be more like the US MBA programs and in fact borrows faculty from INSEAD, Wharton, and Kellogg amongst others.

It also requires work experience and consequently you are getting a more rounded experience than IIM's. I reckon IIM's are pound for pound, the most brainpower you will find in any educational institution in the world. The flip side is to be successful in business you dont need just brain power. A whole array of qualities are needed, many of which arent tested nearly enough at IIM's.

I know 2 fellas from IIM's who did second MBA's in NYC (Columbia and Stern).
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Re: Applying to the IIMs - Advice ? [#permalink]  15 Apr 2008, 12:04
Hi Sandipan,

I had posted this somewhere else in a forum called Pagalguy. Maybe useful. More on a career perspective. The person had asked how his career would shape if he is from IIM and if he is from some US Bschool. Hence answers are based on that. Someone had asked the following 2 questions. Modified a bit.

Views are strictly mine. Biased and whatever. I thought of chipping in from whatever research I had done.

1) Is IIM better than top US Bschools in terms of prospects?

We need to look at this from a different point of view. If you can get an admit from the top 7 (HSW, Chichago GSB, MIT, Kellogg, Columbia) I would say its much better to do from there, mainly from the experience point of view. Whether you will get a better job is a difft issue (it depends on your relative standing in class in terms of profile). But it will open more doors in terms of intl network, alumni being in senior position etc, reputed brand names internationally etc.

From 8 to 15 rank: Tough to say. One needs to take a call. Very very subjective. Though I would still say do an US MBA mainly for the experience and not in terms of prospects. Prospects are again relative. If you have a wonderful profile and can get a I Bank/Mgmt consulting shortlist (which is very competitive in B Schools ranked 8 to 15) do from US. Else, chances of getting a shortlist from I banks/Mgmt consulting in IIM ABC may be higher.

From 15+ rank: IIM ABC would be better in terms of chances. i.e. If you have a very good profile, getting into I Bank/Mgmt consulting from IIM ABC would be easier than from those instis.

But remember one important thing. From IIMs most students join an I Bank or a Mgmt consulting firm as an analyst and after 2 years automatically become an associate. A few firms like LB, DB and Barclays have started giving associate positions. But if you get a job in an I Bank or Mgmt consulting firm from US B school you will join as an associate. Only if you have relevant work ex would you get to join from ABC as an associate whereas in US, relevant work ex is not necessary.

2) What can IIM actually do to your career?

IIM ABC: If you want to work in India, its very good to do from these since they are wonderful brand names in India and will open doors. Basically, whatever door a HSW will open in US, similar doors will open if you are from ABC in India.

If you want to work in US, ABC gives an opportunity to get a front end job there which is otherwise not possible from India. But thats it. It may still take sometime for ABC junta to establish themselves there and the brand becoming well known. If you want to make a shift away from the typical firms from wall street which recruit at IIMs, it may be difficult to land a shortlist in US since the brand name is yet to become famous.

In ABC, if your profile is good, you can make a 20 LPA+ to as high as 30-35 LPA (including bonus) in Indian I Banks. I am not considering the outlier 50 LPA+ jobs which 1-2 get in PE firms.

If you end up in tier-1 consulting, its 18 LPA-20 LPA.

General mgmt firms, tier-2 banks, non i banking banks, tier-2 mgmt consulting etc from the industry pay less. 10-16 LPA with 10-14 LPA being the norm.

I have written above mainly from career perspective. Learning environment in top 15 US B schools would definitely be better than from IIM ABC due to the fact that most students would have work ex and discussions in class will be better and more insightful. ABC is also slowly shifting towards people with more work ex. A few years back, 60% of a class were freshers. These days its dropped to 30%. However, it will still take a lot of time to catch up with the methodology of US B schools.

In Each of the IIMs, ABC, you would find top 30-40 students who, if they had maybe worked for 3-4 years, can get into HSW. The stud profile guys. The ones who topped their schools, got offers from MIT, Stan for MS, Represented India in olympiads at Russia and types, State level sportsmen, started NGO's, 9 pointers out of 10, Worked at DB, LB, Mck etc in India (which is not easy), Full scholarships during college etc, top 100-300 JEE rankers. Whatever they have done, they have been really good in those. They usually join IIM ABC within 0-2 years of work ex. The topmost 1-4 of these guys join PE firms like Blackstone, Apax, Caryle, Sun group and likes these days and make insane money similar to PE firms in US.

However this group, once they work for 3-4 years, they dont apply to IIMs. They apply to HSW and usually are the desis who make to H & S and the remaining top schools. But the 3-4 yrs of work experience would bring in a lot more perspective and maturity towards life and hence the learnings would be better. But they join IIMs earlier and miss out on those.
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Re: Applying to the IIMs - Advice ? [#permalink]  15 Apr 2008, 16:23
Hi Sandipan,

I had posted this somewhere else in a forum called Pagalguy. Maybe useful. More on a career perspective. The person had asked how his career would shape if he is from IIM and if he is from some US Bschool. Hence answers are based on that. Someone had asked the following 2 questions. Modified a bit.

Views are strictly mine. Biased and whatever. I thought of chipping in from whatever research I had done.

1) Is IIM better than top US Bschools in terms of prospects?

We need to look at this from a different point of view. If you can get an admit from the top 7 (HSW, Chichago GSB, MIT, Kellogg, Columbia) I would say its much better to do from there, mainly from the experience point of view. Whether you will get a better job is a difft issue (it depends on your relative standing in class in terms of profile). But it will open more doors in terms of intl network, alumni being in senior position etc, reputed brand names internationally etc.

From 8 to 15 rank: Tough to say. One needs to take a call. Very very subjective. Though I would still say do an US MBA mainly for the experience and not in terms of prospects. Prospects are again relative. If you have a wonderful profile and can get a I Bank/Mgmt consulting shortlist (which is very competitive in B Schools ranked 8 to 15) do from US. Else, chances of getting a shortlist from I banks/Mgmt consulting in IIM ABC may be higher.

From 15+ rank: IIM ABC would be better in terms of chances. i.e. If you have a very good profile, getting into I Bank/Mgmt consulting from IIM ABC would be easier than from those instis.

But remember one important thing. From IIMs most students join an I Bank or a Mgmt consulting firm as an analyst and after 2 years automatically become an associate. A few firms like LB, DB and Barclays have started giving associate positions. But if you get a job in an I Bank or Mgmt consulting firm from US B school you will join as an associate. Only if you have relevant work ex would you get to join from ABC as an associate whereas in US, relevant work ex is not necessary.

2) What can IIM actually do to your career?

IIM ABC: If you want to work in India, its very good to do from these since they are wonderful brand names in India and will open doors. Basically, whatever door a HSW will open in US, similar doors will open if you are from ABC in India.

If you want to work in US, ABC gives an opportunity to get a front end job there which is otherwise not possible from India. But thats it. It may still take sometime for ABC junta to establish themselves there and the brand becoming well known. If you want to make a shift away from the typical firms from wall street which recruit at IIMs, it may be difficult to land a shortlist in US since the brand name is yet to become famous.

In ABC, if your profile is good, you can make a 20 LPA+ to as high as 30-35 LPA (including bonus) in Indian I Banks. I am not considering the outlier 50 LPA+ jobs which 1-2 get in PE firms.

If you end up in tier-1 consulting, its 18 LPA-20 LPA.

General mgmt firms, tier-2 banks, non i banking banks, tier-2 mgmt consulting etc from the industry pay less. 10-16 LPA with 10-14 LPA being the norm.

I have written above mainly from career perspective. Learning environment in top 15 US B schools would definitely be better than from IIM ABC due to the fact that most students would have work ex and discussions in class will be better and more insightful. ABC is also slowly shifting towards people with more work ex. A few years back, 60% of a class were freshers. These days its dropped to 30%. However, it will still take a lot of time to catch up with the methodology of US B schools.

In Each of the IIMs, ABC, you would find top 30-40 students who, if they had maybe worked for 3-4 years, can get into HSW. The stud profile guys. The ones who topped their schools, got offers from MIT, Stan for MS, Represented India in olympiads at Russia and types, State level sportsmen, started NGO's, 9 pointers out of 10, Worked at DB, LB, Mck etc in India (which is not easy), Full scholarships during college etc, top 100-300 JEE rankers. Whatever they have done, they have been really good in those. They usually join IIM ABC within 0-2 years of work ex. The topmost 1-4 of these guys join PE firms like Blackstone, Apax, Caryle, Sun group and likes these days and make insane money similar to PE firms in US.

However this group, once they work for 3-4 years, they dont apply to IIMs. They apply to HSW and usually are the desis who make to H & S and the remaining top schools. But the 3-4 yrs of work experience would bring in a lot more perspective and maturity towards life and hence the learnings would be better. But they join IIMs earlier and miss out on those.

Wonderful analysis .. thanks
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Re: Applying to the IIMs - Advice ? [#permalink]  15 Apr 2008, 18:02
looks like a lot of IIM experts on this thread. Let me just ask this then. I am looking to apply to IIM A,B and would like to know if there are any quotas for foreing nationals from the South East Asian countries. I hear a lot of things from different people but I want to know the facts. I think for an international the test they look for is the GMAT. When I looked at the application forms for IIM A I didnt see any questions to write essays on. What are they looking for in Internationals if they are not even asking for any essays??? Are they GMAT score centric???
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Re: Applying to the IIMs - Advice ? [#permalink]  14 Aug 2008, 20:28
700willdo wrote:
looks like a lot of IIM experts on this thread. Let me just ask this then. I am looking to apply to IIM A,B and would like to know if there are any quotas for foreing nationals from the South East Asian countries. I hear a lot of things from different people but I want to know the facts. I think for an international the test they look for is the GMAT. When I looked at the application forms for IIM A I didnt see any questions to write essays on. What are they looking for in Internationals if they are not even asking for any essays??? Are they GMAT score centric???

I think each question in IIMA form has hidden agenda and it gives you chance to explain in detail or brief. No word limit. Revisit the questions, those are hidden essay questions. This is my perspective.
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Re: Applying to the IIMs - Advice ? [#permalink]  29 Aug 2008, 00:39
If I were you, i would prefer ISB over IIM's.

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Re: Applying to the IIMs - Advice ? [#permalink]  30 Aug 2008, 18:59
finally we have some replies on this thread. Thanx for the replies guys. Well, I applied for the PGPX for executives at IIM-A and am awaiting results due on September 10th.

mbaonline,
I thought long and hard about ISB vis-a-vis IIMs and decided to go with IIM-A first. I think their 1 year course is superior to what ISB is offering but that is completely my own reading. My second choice school obviously is ISB. I am waiting for the results from IIM-A and then I will apply to ISB accordingly. By the way, why do you think I should choose ISB over IIM???
Re: Applying to the IIMs - Advice ?   [#permalink] 30 Aug 2008, 18:59
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