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INSEAD MBA Program – Class Profile | Employment & Career Outcomes | Notable Alumni

INSEAD was founded in post-war Europe with the aim of bringing people together through business and promoting peace and prosperity. Staying laser sharp on its founding focus has allowed the INSEAD MBA Program to become one of the top international MBA programs in the world. With over 90 nationalities represented in its class, INSEAD is truly ‘The Business School for the World.’ In this article, we will explore the various aspects including the class profile, academic structure, and curriculum as well as the careers and employment reports of the INSEAD MBA program.

INSEAD Business School - INSEAD MBA Program - Class Profile, Employment Reports and Notable Alumni

Here is a brief outline of the topics that we will cover in this article:

INSEAD: By the numbers

INSEAD MBA Program - 2018 Class Profile
The INSEAD MBA program is one of the top-ranked international MBA programs in the world and consistently placed in the top 2 on Financial Times and Forbes rankings. Also, since the opening of its Singapore campus in 1999, INSEAD became the first business school to have 2 campuses with permanent faculty staff.

Here is a look at the top statistics of the full-time MBA program at INSEAD:

Sr. No INSEAD Numbers
1 Average GMAT 709
2 Class Size 500 (approximate)
3 GMAT Range 600 – 780
4 Work Experience Average 6 years
5 Tuition Cost (per year) € 85,000 – € 87,000 (~$97,000 – $99,000)
6 Average Age 29
7 % Employed after graduation (3 months) 91%
8 Median Salary $109,800
9 Nationalities represented in the class 94

INSEAD was founded in 1957 by a Harvard professor and venture capitalist Georges Doriot, alongside Claude Janssen and Olivier Giscard d’Estaing with the goal of bringing people together through business and promoting peace and prosperity in post-war Europe.

INSEAD: Fontainebleau Campus location and EnvironmentINSEAD MBA Program - Campus

Its Europe campus located just outside of Paris sits on eight hectares adjacent to the Fontainebleau forest surrounded by 60,000 acres of deciduous trees. Students have described Fontainebleau as, “a town so small and quaint it doesn’t even really need public transportation.” INSEAD is within walking distance of numerous cafes, pubs, and restaurants as it is located a stone’s throw away from the town center.


Small Town like Feel with a Proximity to Urban Hubs


Though it may not possess a college town like feel, the relatively small size and setting of the campus provides a heightened sense of community and allows students to get to know each other personally.

Fontainebleau combines the benefits and opportunities of a small student-centric community and an urban hub. Paris is just a 40-minute train ride away with dozens of trains running each day. The airport is also easily accessible offering flights throughout Europe.

This accessibility and connectivity to urban centers makes bringing industry speakers to campus rather easy and allows students to access the international business opportunities in France’s capital with relative ease.

INSEAD: Singapore Campus Location

INSEAD’s Singapore campus was established due to “a desire to create a bridge between Asia and the rest of the world.” It is located in the heart of the Buono Vista district which is also known as Singapore’s “knowledge hub” and is surrounded by other universities including the National University of Singapore, Singapore Polytechnic and the German Institute of Science and Technology.
INSEAD MBA Program - Singapore Campus
Having a population of just over 5.6 million within an area of less than 300 square miles, the city-state of Singapore is a modern urban hub offering an extensive transit system along with restaurants, shopping centers, and other amenities. Businesses from around the world have offices in Singapore.

In 2016 PwC ranked Singapore as the #2 in the Cities of Opportunity Index. This index weighs the economic and social health of the world’s top business cities. It performed well across the board, with low taxes, advanced technology, and strong transport and infrastructure systems that support its current status as a booming business hub, particularly for the finance and insurance industries.

INSEAD MBA Program: Application Deadlines

Following are the application deadlines for the INSEAD MBA Program:

Intake Round Application Deadline Interview Invites Admission Decision
January 2020 Round 1 February 20, 2019 March 22, 2019 April 26, 2019
Round 2 April 17, 2019 May 17, 2019 June 21, 2019
Round 3 June 5, 2019 July 5, 2019 August 9, 2019
Round 4 July 24, 2019 August 23, 2019 September 27, 2019
September 2020 Round 1 September 18, 2019 October 18, 2019 November 22, 2019
Round 2 November 6, 2019 December 6, 2019 January 24, 2020
Round 3 January 15, 2020 February 14, 2020 March 20, 2020
Round 4 February 26, 2020 March 27, 2020 April 30, 2020
January 2021 Round 1 March 11, 2020 April 10, 2020 May 15, 2020
Round 2 May 6, 2020 June 5, 2020 July 10, 2020
Round 3 June 24, 2020 July 24, 2020 September 4, 2020
Round 4 July 28, 2020 August 28, 2020 September 25, 2020

INSEAD MBA Program: Academic Structure & Curriculum

It is important to note that the INSEAD MBA Program duration is 10 consecutive months long. Students have often termed the accelerated pace of the course as an “Intense Experience.”

INSEAD MBA Program - Curriculum Overview

The 5 Academic Periods of the INSEAD MBA Program


The academic program comprises 5 periods, each lasting 8 weeks. Period 1 & 2 is built around 12 core courses such as Financial Accounting, Organizational Behavior, and Strategy. This helps establish a solid foundation of key management disciplines. Period 3 onward students are free to choose from 75 different electives in a variety of subjects.

The program culminates with a capstone project in period 5, where you’ll also be juggling 3 elective courses, networking as well as recruiting activities.

INSEAD MBA: Philosophy and Strength

The INSEAD mission statement reads:

“INSEAD brings together people, cultures, and ideas to develop responsible leaders who transform business and society.”

It prides itself in being “The Business School for the World” and truly strives to offer a global perspective on business through management education. Its innovative multi-campus format where classes run concurrently, unmatched classroom diversity and an intense academic experience due to its shorter 1-year course format that contributes heavily to its student’s success.INSEAD MBA Program - Alumni Distribution by Continent

INSEAD deeply values diversity as a source of learning and enrichment. From its diverse and multi-cultural class composition to the myriad different teaching styles used during instruction such as simulations, role plays, and the case method.


INSEAD MBA Program: Teaching Methods and Group-Based Learning Focus


There is no preferred teaching method, rather, what matters is the effectiveness of the learning experience. As professors aim to bring out the best in each student in the class, they encourage lively classroom exchanges. The objective of doing this is to examine different perspectives and to orchestrate a multi-faceted debate to challenge everyone’s assumptions.

Initially, you’ll be made part of a study group of 5-6 students who are selected to maximize diversity in terms of age in terms of gender, nationality, experience and previous education.  This study group will become the focal point of your work during your core courses.

Unlike U.S based business schools where the cases discussed in class are about United States businesses, INSEAD has developed deep expertise about Asia and Asian companies. This was further bolstered by its strong emphasis on academic research and presence in Singapore.

The breadth and diversity of the program also creates an enviable network of over 57,000 alumni spread over 175 countries and 162 nationalities. This alumni network can open a door or answer any question wherever a graduate may go.

Thus, INSEAD strengths are firmly rooted in its diverse multi-cultural class. No wonder it was ranked above many two-year MBA programs in pay gain over time. With students coming $150,400 ahead after four years when tuition and cost of living are factored into the equation.

INSEAD MBA Program: Incoming Class ProfileINSEAD-MBA-Program-Class-pre-MBA-educational-profile

Following are some statistics related to the incoming class profile at INSEAD (INSEAD does not release detailed data about GPA and the number of applications it receives)

# of Enrolled students 1020
Work Experience 6 years
Average age 29 years
% of women in the class 36%
% of international citizens 93%

Average Age and Experience of the Incoming Class at INSEAD


The incoming class at INSEAD consists of professionals from a diverse number of regions and industries as well as the differing amount of work experience. The class has an average age of 29 years which is about 2 years greater than U.S business schools. Since the 10-month MBA course format reduces the time professionals spend away from their careers, it reduces the opportunity cost of getting an MBA.INSEAD MBA Program - Class Profile - Geographic diversity

Thus, it is quite suitable for older candidates who are looking to get a world-class MBA experience in a shorter amount of time. These candidates also tend to have clearer career goals post-MBA due to their greater work experience.

Students holding undergraduate degrees in business form the largest cohort of students by educational background. The second largest cohort being students with an engineering background. Although INSEAD ensures that there is no dominant national majority on campus, 41% of students are from the western European countries

The following graphics depict the different aspects of the incoming class of 2018 at INSEAD:

INSEAD MBA Program - Professional and years of experience

INSEAD MBA Program: Employment and Career Outcomes

INSEAD boasts of a strong track record of placements and career outcomes for the graduates of its MBA program. Out of 1020 students in the program, 985 students participated in formal recruitment activities, and 91% reported having received at least one job offer within 3 months of graduation. The overall annual median salary reported was $109,800 with the median sign on and median performance bonus being $27,000 and $23,900 respectively. This brings the total median compensation to $160,700. This compares favorably with other top business schools in the U.S as well as Europe.

INSEAD MBA Program: Employment Highlights

INSEAD MBA Program - 2018 Employment Highlights

Compensation Type Median Percent Receiving
Base Salary $109,800 100%
Signing Bonus $27,000 66%
Performance Bonus $23,900 76%


INSEAD Business School: Employment by Industry

36% of the class chose careers in management consulting, and 17% chose Technology, Media, and Telecommunications as their sector of choice for employment.

Following is a detailed breakdown of Employment by Industry of 2018 INSEAD MBA Graduates:

INSEAD MBA Program - Employment by Industry

Industry Percentage Median Salary (in US $) Mean Salary (In US $) Median Sign-on Bonus (In US $) Median Performance Bonus (In US $)
Consulting 52% 113,400 113,800 27,000 24,000
Financial Services 15% 108,000 112,900 31,100 56,850
Investment Banking/Sales & Trading/ Banking 34% 108,000 118,800 43,200 54,000
Private Equity/Venture Capital 32% 108,250 111,800 18,600 55,100
Investment Management/ Hedge Funds 15% 108,000 116,100 26,000 60,800
Other Financial Services 14% 91,700 102,400 N/A N/A
Real Estate 5%  N/A N/A  N/A  N/A
Technology/Media/Telecommunication (TMT) 17% 104,000 102,000 24,450 19,550
E-Commerce/Internet 57% 101,400 95,800 26,850 16,900
Information Technology/Telecommunications 31% 110,000 111,100 20,950 19,550
Media/Entertainment/Advertising 7% 124,600 127,600 33,800 N/A
Fintech 5%  89,500  105,900  N/A  N/A
Corporate (excluding TMT) 16% 98,200 104,700 20,500 17,900
Retails/Consumer & Luxury Goods 26% 105,650 109,500 35,000 18,100
Manufacturing/Conglomerates 21% 99,200 103,300 19,350 16,650
Healthcare 18% 98,350 105,600 20,000 19,050
Public Sector/Social Impact 10% 85,900 88,800 N/A N/A
Primary Industries 8% 85,800 91,600 N/A 12,900
Corporate Services 7% 110,000 112,800 N/A 15,000
Energy 4% 124,500 146,600 N/A N/A
Other 6% N/A N/A N/A N/A


INSEAD MBA Program: Employment by Location

INSEAD MBA graduates found employment in 65 countries around the world. The following table contains a detailed breakdown of employment location.

INSEAD MBA Program - Employment by Location

Continent Percentage
North America 7%
Northern and Western Europe 38%
Central/Eastern Europe 4%
Latin America 6%
Southern Europe 8%
Asia Pacific 26%
Africa/Middle East 11%


Career Development Center Activities


The career development center is involved with every student even before the start of the program. Before you step foot on the campus, you can attend webinars and workshops related to resume and relationship building. Once you step foot on campus, the career development team organizes a series of events throughout the 5 periods including workshops, training, panel discussions, group, and one-on-one counseling sessions.

INSEAD MBA Program: Top Employers

Industry Top Employers (Number of Hires)
Consulting McKinsey & Company (131), Boston Consulting Group (78), Bain & Company (65)
Finance Goldman Sachs (8), Credit Suisse (5), Morgan Stanley (6)
Technology Amazon (36), Apple (5), Microsoft (5), Dell (4), Uber (4)

INSEAD: Notable Alumni

INSEAD MBA Program - Alumni

The following business leaders are a few of the notable alumni of the INSEAD

Name Accomplishment of Note
Meera Sanyal CEO and Chairperson of the RBS
Jusuf Kalla Vice President of Indonesia
Samir Arora CEO of Sage Digital
Najib Mikati Former PM of Lebanon
António Horta Osório Chief Executive of Lloyds Banking Group
Tidjane Thiam Chief Executive Officer of Credit Suisse
Henry Engelhardt Chief Executive of Admiral

Other MBA Programs you should consider:

Following are some other schools that are a close match to INSEAD in terms of GMAT, rankings, age, and work experience. We have listed the programs by stretch, match, and safety. Note that these options are presented on the basis of the schools’ brand image and ranking status as a general yardstick.

Stretch Schools: IMD Switzerland, NYU Stern, UCLA Anderson
Match Schools: Oxford Saïd School of Business, London Business School
Safety Schools: University of Cambridge: Judge, HEC Paris, ESADE

Getting into a top MBA program like INSEAD requires a 700+ GMAT score, If you are planning to take the GMAT, we can help you by giving you access to quality online content to prepare.  We are the most reviewed GMAT prep company on gmatclub with more than 1825 reviews (as on May 13, 2019). Why don’t you take a free trial and judge it for yourself? 

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