The vibrant and growing Early Careers portfolio at London Business School (LBS) continues to go from strength to strength. And with more than 96% of these students securing employment within three months of graduation, much of that success can be attributed to the efforts of the Career Centre.
Ed Dallas is Head of Employer Engagement at LBS. “We work with recruiters in a variety of ways, looking to build strategic relationships with them to ensure they see LBS as a source of positive talent for their critical business needs,” says Dallas. “At a practical level, we have companies coming to campus to present to students from different programmes. We operate recruitment evenings, with 30-50 companies from specific sectors on campus to network with students, and a job board that provides access to a range of roles across different experience levels. Companies are also encouraged to look at broader ways to engage with the School, either through activities alongside the student clubs or events to support skills development in specific areas.”
Employment success may be across the board, but not everyone comes to their career journey with the same needs. The Career Centre team supports students via the EEDD framework – exploring, evaluating, developing and doing – to identify and refine their career goals. “In addition to a rich collection of online resources, we work closely with students in a variety of formats – everything from plenary sessions with the whole class to smaller group workshops and one-to-one coaching sessions,” says Enri Cocchi, Careers Lead for the Masters in Financial Analysis. “Our goal is to support students in successfully securing an internship or permanent role in the function, sector and location of choice.”
All this is good news for candidates applying to the Masters in Analytics and Management (MAM), an exciting addition to the Early Careers portfolio due to launch in August 2019. Heather Daly, LBS Senior Project Manager, Degree Education and Career Centre, says the practical and applied focus of the programme is specifically designed to maximise opportunities for students to practice classroom theories and techniques, and to sharpen data analysis and translation skills. “The initial research we did into the demand for business analytics skills showed us a growing, yet unmet, need for data analytics capabilities and talent. There is a well-cited McKinsey report on the huge void in people with these skills in the US alone.” This programme, she says, will help to overcome that shortfall.
Such research is typical of the dialogue between LBS staff, faculty and recruiters, and ensures core courses and electives across the entire programme portfolio reflect the capabilities, skills and knowledge that graduates need. Dallas notes: “We’ve seen a growth in demand for analytical skills from across the consulting and technology sectors. The leading strategy consulting firms are all looking to build their capabilities in the areas of analytics and digital. And for technology firms, the ability to analyse and make use of the immense amount of data that they generate is critical to keeping ahead of the competition.”
Gareth Howells, Executive Director for the Early Career portfolio, says new content is continually added to all programmes, and delivered through a variety of methods. “Core courses use the most up to date case studies and simulations, and new electives are added every year. We use a wide spectrum of practitioners within the business community to deliver hands-on practical insights, and our experiential courses connect students with leading companies so they can apply what they’ve learned in a real-world environment.”
The introduction of the Masters in Analytics and Management will see the addition of a substantial number of new electives, many of which will also benefit students on other programmes. But, says Dallas, it’s about more than just specific techniques and approaches. “It’s about the ability to translate insights from data into insights and recommendations for action. The emphasis is on practical ability to interpret the data and understand what it means for the commercial strategy of the company. This means that soft skills continue to be immensely important – the ability to communicate effectively, to influence others and to manage a diverse range of stakeholders. We’re confident that MAM graduates will be sought after for their ability to combine practical analytics skills and cutting edge understanding of management theory and practice.”