Why is it so important to make quick decisions about pre-MBAs hires in a competitive market?

If you’re a pre-MBA consulting or investment banking analyst, the good times are here. In this candidate’s market, it’s far from unusual to hear about top junior talent racking up multiple offers. There are a couple of critical implications here for employers. When the deck is not so stacked to your advantage, how can employers ensure that they are still able to attract this top talent when they are early in their career and therefore a (relative) bargain?


The main reason why it is important to think and act fast for this particular candidate pool is that pre-MBAs tend to skew younger with more flexible lifestyles. Although this is certainly not true across the board, it does mean that many of these candidates will be less likely to be committed to staying in a particular location, and happier to up sticks and relocate when an exciting new opportunity comes knocking. On a related note, it’s important for employers to realize that the allure of cities like New York, San Francisco, and Los Angeles no longer resonate so strongly with younger generations – the rising cultural cache of Austin and Salt Lake City indicate that urban metropolises are losing out to smaller hubs where housing is more affordable and nature more readily accessible. Candidates without strong ties to certain places will be less willing to wait around for that perfect fit. Having just gone through a grueling fifth round of interviews, would a competitive candidate really be willing to sit on their heels for around for another couple of weeks to see if they’ve made round six when another offer is already on the table?


For employers in these circumstances, the crucial step is to try and make the hiring process more efficient without skimping on quality – after all, hiring right is still more important that hiring fast. One way to achieve this is to make sure that enough groundwork as possible has been covered by the hiring team before they start to interview candidates, and that the team has a strong and shared vision about the skillsets – both technical and personal – that the ideal candidate will possess. Another step is to build on the resourcefulness that Covid-19 has already necessitated, and consider condensing down interview rounds, or keeping the early stages on zoom. The most important component will be to have a clear vision surrounding the ideal background and compensation ranges in order to make that final decision quicker and easier.



Olivia Humphrey is a Project Manager at ECA. She can be reached at [email protected].



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