Harvard Business School – A Complete Guide

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Harvard Business School (HBS), which is part of the Ivy League and M7, is consistently ranked as one of the best business schools in the world. The Harvard MBA program is known for bringing together some of the brightest young business minds.

Students in the Harvard MBA class of 2024 come from a wide variety of backgrounds and industries, including finance, consulting, technology, manufacturing, the non-profit sector, and the arts.

If joining the ranks of HBS’ renowned alumni is a goal of yours, our Harvard MBA Class Profile Analysis will provide insight into the kind of applicants who are successful in getting into the school. Additionally, we will also provide employment reports, cost of attendance, and scholarships at Harvard Business School.

Harvard Business School

General Information on Harvard Business School

Location – Soldiers Field, Boston, MA 02163

Dean – Srikant Datar 

Admissions Office – MBA Admissions, Harvard Business School, Dillon House, Soldiers Field Boston, MA 02163

Phone: +1-617-495-6128

Email: admissions@hbs.edu

Social media – Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, Instagram, LinkedIn, Apple Podcasts, TikTok

Harvard MBA – By the numbers

Here are a few important statistics for the latest class i.e. class of 2024 of the Harvard Business School

Applications Received8264
Class Size1015
Median GMAT Score730
GMAT Range540-790
Median GRE Score326
GRE Range297-340
Average GPA3.70
Work Experience (Average)5 years
Tuition Cost for a Single Person$73,440
Percentage of students that received a job offer95%
Median Base Salary$175,000
Median Signing Bonus$30,000
Median Performance Bonus$40,000

Now, let’s take a look in detail at the latest incoming class i.e., the class of 2024 of Harvard Business School.

Harvard MBA Class Profile 2024

Enrollment

A total of 8,264 people applied to be a part of the HBS class of 2024. However, HBS gave a chance to 12% of the applicants and 1,105 students enrolled.

  • Applications Received by Harvard Business School – 8264
  • Total Enrolled – 1015
  • Enrollment rate – 12.2%

Diversity

Business Schools care a lot about maintaining diversity in the class. Nearly half (46%) of the HBS class of 2024 is female and 38% of students are foreign-born. The biggest chunk of international students comes from Asia (14%) followed by Europe (9%) and Mexico, Central, and South America put together (5%). More details are below.

  • % women in the HBS class of 2024 – 46%
  • % international students in the HBS class of 2024 – 38%

Geographical Area% of HBS class of 2024
United States62%
Asia14%
Europe9%
Mexico, Central, and South America5%
Canada4%
Middle East3%
Africa3%
Oceania1%

Test Scores and GPA

Harvard Business School is home to some of the brightest minds in the world. So, it’s quite understandable that the GPA and test scores will be on the higher side. The average GPA of the HBS class of 2024 is 3.7, the median GMAT score is 730, and the median GRE score is 326.

Average GPA – 3.7

GMAT Score

  • Median GMAT – 730
  • GMAT Range: 540-790
  • Median GMAT Quant – 48
  • GMAT Quant Range: 34-51
  • Median GMAT Verbal – 42
  • GMAT Verbal Range: 29-51

GRE Score

  • Median GRE – 326
  • GRE Range – 297-340
  • Median GRE Quant Median – 163
  • GRE Quant Range: 150-170
  • Median GRE Verbal – 163
  • GRE Verbal Range: 147-170
  • Percent applicants submitting GRE Scores – 30%

Undergraduate Major

The highest number of HBS class of 2024 students have a background in engineering (28%) followed by Business and Commerce (24%) and Economics (19%).

More details are in the table below:

Undergraduate MajorPercentage of HBS class of 2024
Engineering28%
Business/Commerce24%
Economics19%
Math/Physical Sciences14%
Social Sciences10%
Arts/Humanities5%

Pre-MBA industry of HBS MBA Class of 2024

Every student in the HBS class of 2024 has some work experience. The average work experience being 5 years. 16% of the HBS class of 2024 has a background in Consulting and Venture Capital/Private Equity followed by Technology (14%) and Financial services (10%).

More details are in the table below:

Pre-MBA industry% of HBS class of 2024
Consulting16%
Venture Capital/Private Equity16%
Technology14%
Financial Services10%
Manufacturing/Industrial/Energy9%
Consumer Products/Retail/E-Commerce9%
Health Care/Biotech8%
Nonprofit/Government/Education6%
Media/Entertainment/Travel4%
Military4%
Services3%

MBA Application Deadlines

The application dates for the MBA Class of 2025 (incoming class of 2023) are

Application RoundDeadlineDecisions
Round 1Sep 7, 2022Dec 8, 2022
Round 2Jan 4, 2023Mar 29, 2023

The application deadline for 2023 HBS 2+2 applicants is:

Application RoundDeadlineDecisions
2+2 RoundApr 27, 2023Jul 6, 2023

Now that you know the education and industry background of the latest class of Harvard Business School, you must have an idea of where you stand compared to them. To get into Harvard Business School try to match or exceed these numbers. Now, let’s take a look at the compensation that HBS MBA students get after they graduate.

HBS MBA employment statistics - Class of 2022

The Harvard Business School class of 2022 received a median base salary of $175,000. Moreover, 63% of the class received a median signing bonus of $30,000 and 73% will receive a median performance bonus of $40,000.

Here are the details:

  • Median Base Salary - $175,000
  • Median Signing Bonus - $30,000 - 63% Receiving
  • Median Performance Bonus - $40,000 - 73% Receiving
  • 95% received an offer within 3 months of graduating

Employment by Industry

26% of the HBS MBA class of 2022 found employment in consulting followed by 19% in Technology, and 15% in Private Equity.

More details are in the below table.

Industry% HBS class of 2024 hired
Consulting26%
Technology19%
Private Equity15%
Investment Management / Hedge Fund8%
Venture Capital7%
Investment Banking3%
Other Financial Services1%
Health Care5%
Manufacturing5%
Consumer Products3%
Entertainment / Media3%
Nonprofit / Government3%
Retail1%
Services1%

Median Salary by Industry

Candidates finding employment in Venture Capita received the highest median salary of $178,000. Candidates who found a job in Consulting, Private Equity, Investment Management / Hedge Fund, Investment Banking, and Services received a median salary of $175,000. Technology companies paid a median salary of $165,000 to the HBS MBA class of 2022 students.

The median performance bonus was highest for Private Equity at $175,000. Investment Management / Hedge Fund gave a median performance bonus of $168,000.

More details are in the following table.

IndustryMedian SalaryMedian Signing BonusMedian Performance Bonus
Consulting$175,000$30,000$30,000
Technology$165,000$30,000$26,000
Private Equity$175,000$30,000$175,000
Investment Management / Hedge Fund$175,000$50,000$168,000
Venture Capital$178,000$15,000$50,000
Investment Banking$175,000$50,000$125,000
Other Financial Services$139,000NANA
Health Care$155,000$23,000$26,000
Manufacturing$150,000$30,000$25,000
Consumer Products$125,000$40,000$12,000
Entertainment / Media$154,000NA$40,000
Nonprofit / Government$110,000NANA
Retail$140,000$23,000NA
Services$175,000NANA

Employment by function

33% of the HBS MBA class of 2022 found employment in Finance, followed by 26% in Consulting, and 12% in Marketing.

More details are below.

Function% HBS class of 2024 hired
Finance33%
Consulting26%
Marketing12%
General Management10%
Strategic Planning8%
Business Development7%
Other4%

Median Salary by function

HBS class of 2022 students who found employment in Finance and Consulting received the highest median salaries of $175,000 followed by Marketing and Strategic Planning ($160,000), and Business Development ($155,000).

Jobs in finance also received the highest median performance bonus of $150,000.

FunctionMedian SalaryMedian Signing BonusMedian Performance Bonus
Finance$175,000$43,000$150,000
Consulting$175,000$30,000$30,000
Marketing$160,000$30,000$20,000
General Management$150,000$28,000$30,000
Strategic Planning$160,000$30,000$20,000
Business Development$155,000$25,000$31,000
Other$175,000$30,000$29,000

Employment by Location

The majority (91%) of the HBS MBA class of 2022 found employment in the United States. A mere 9% chose to work outside the US. In the US, 47% found jobs in the North East and 24% in the West. More details are below.

Location

  • United States - 91%
  • International - 9%

United States

  • Mid-Atlantic - 4%
  • Midwest - 5%
  • Northeast - 47%
  • South - 6%
  • Southwest - 5%
  • West - 24%

International

  • Asia - 2%
  • Australia & Oceania - <1%
  • Canada - <1%
  • Europe - 3%
  • Latin America - <1%
  • Middle East & North Africa - 1%
  • Sub-Saharan Africa - <1%

Start-Ups

14% of the HBS class of 2022 joined a Start-up. A start-up is defined here as an organization that is still private and 10 years of age or younger.

Median Base Salary at start-ups - $160,000

By Industry

  • Consulting - 1%
  • Consumer Products - 4%
  • Entertainment / Media - 3%
  • Financial Services - 4%
  • Health Care - 18%
  • Manufacturing - 15%
  • Services - 3%
  • Technology - 53%

By Function

  • Business Development - 27%
  • Consulting - 1%
  • Finance - 9%
  • General Management - 11%
  • Marketing - 31%
  • Strategic Planning - 16%

Entrepreneurship

106 students set up their own businesses. 39% decided to start a business in the Technology space and 20% in financial services.

More details are below.

  • Number of Founders - 106
  • Have a Cofounder - 67%
  • Connected with a Cofounder at HBS - 38%
  • Businesses Making a Social Impact - 50

Founded a business in Industry

  • Consulting - 2%
  • Consumer Products - 7%
  • Financial Services - 20%
  • Health Care - 13%
  • Manufacturing - 4%
  • Nonprofit / Government - 1%
  • Retail - 1%
  • Services - 13%
  • Technology - 39%

5-year hiring trend at Harvard Business School

Trend by industry

The employment by industry trends has remained fairly the same for the last 5 years at Harvard Business School. 

More details are below

Industry20182019202020212022
Consulting25%21%24%23%26%
Consumer Products3%3%3%3%3%
Entertainment / Media4%3%2%3%3%
Health Care6%7%7%6%5%
Investment Banking6%3%3%4%3%
Investment Management / Hedge Fund6%4%7%8%8%
Manufacturing5%7%4%4%5%
Nonprofit / Government2%5%4%3%3%
Other Financial Services2%1%1%2%1%
Private Equity12%15%18%14%15%
Retail3%3%<1%1%1%
Services3%3%3%3%1%
Technology19%20%19%19%19%
Venture Capital3%5%5%7%7%

Trend by function

Jobs in Finance have seen an uptick since 2018 increasing from 29% to 33%. On the other hand, the share of jobs in General Management has decreased from 16% in 2018 to 10% in 2022.

Function20182019202020212022
Business Development8%9%5%6%7%
Consulting26%22%26%25%26%
Finance29%29%32%33%33%
General Management16%16%14%11%10%
Marketing11%13%13%11%12%
Strategic Planning8%6%7%10%8%
Other3%4%4%4%4%

This is what the salaries look like at Harvard Business School. However, you should also know how much will it cost to attend Harvard Business School. The next section explains this in detail.

Cost of Attendance

The HBS Cost of Attendance includes both direct and indirect expenses. Direct expenses, tuition and fees, are charged directly to the student bill. Indirect expenses, such as living expenses, are more flexible. This annual cost of attendance assumes a nine (9) month academic year and a moderate student lifestyle

SingleMarriedMarried with One ChildMarried with Two Children
Tuition$73,440$73,440$73,440$73,440
HUHS Student Health Fee (SHF)$1,304$1,304$1,304$1,304
Student Health Insurance Plan (SHIP)$4,080$4,080$4,080$4,080
HUSHP For Student Spouses/Dependents$0$8,464$12,962$15,224
Course & Program Materials Fee$2,550$2,550$2,550$2,550
Room & Utilities (9 Months)$14,850*($1,650/mo)$23,120**($2,569/mo)$29,700***($3,300/mo)$29,700($3,300/mo)
Living Expenses (9 Months)$16,540($1,838/mo)$21,350($2,372/mo)$25,880($2,876/mo)$31,010($3,446/mo)
Total$112,764$134,308$149,916$157,308
Computer (Variable; Not Included In Above Budgets)$1,500$1,500$1,500$1,500

*based on average area market rate for 2 bedroom apartment w/roommate

**based on average area market rate for 1 bedroom apartment

***based on average area market rate for 2 bedroom apartment

HBS Scholarships

Business school is a valuable investment in your future. HBS supports this investment by offering need-based scholarships to both domestic and international students. HBS Scholarships are gifts that do not need to be paid back. Approximately 50 percent of students receive a need-based scholarship from HBS and the average scholarship is approximately $42,000 per year, or $84,000 total.

In August of 2022, HBS announced that it will provide full-tuition scholarships to students with the greatest financial need and will offer new scholarships to more students from middle-income backgrounds.

How ‘Need’ is determined

The financial aid team determines financial need based on the following factors:

  • Gross income from the prior three years
  • Assets
  • Socioeconomic background
  • Undergraduate debt

Scholarships are based on a standardized formula for all students. Students with higher earnings contribute at a higher rate than students with lower earnings. If you are married and/or have children, we also consider a portion of your spouse’s income and assets, as well as your higher cost of living.

Each financial aid package is different and may include a combination of need-based scholarships and student loans. Some HBS students receive additional funding through HBS Complementary Fellowships. As part of the shared investment, HBS students meet the remaining cost of their MBA using personal savings and/or outside funding.

Final Thoughts

Getting an MBA from Harvard Business School is a dream for most MBA applicants. Harvard Business School is one of the best business schools in the world, so getting into it can be hard. Even though there is no foolproof method to ensure admission to HBS, you can improve your chances significantly by working diligently on your application. We can help you get into Harvard Business School. Our consultants include HBS alumni who will give you the most accurate advice and guidance you’ll need to get into HBS. So, get started now.

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