Rahul has decided to pursue a graduate degree in management. However, he is confused as to which test to take? GMAT or CAT or some other test. With the umpteen number of entrance tests accepted for admission into graduate management programs across business schools in India, this is indeed a pressing question faced by all MBA aspirants across the country. In this article, we analyze and discuss the scope of GMAT in India.
Here is a brief outline of the topics we will cover:
- Indian Business Schools which accept GMAT scores
- Cost & ROI of an MBA post GMAT
- Salaries, profiles, and placements available after graduation
- Advantages of taking the GMAT over other tests for admission to Indian B Schools
- How to choose the right program according to your current profile?
Indian B Schools accepting GMAT scores
The GMAT is the most widely recognized test for admission into graduate management programs worldwide. Let us look at some statistics:
- 250,000 tests taken in 2017 around the world
- Available in over 114 countries
- 600 test centers worldwide
- Accepted by 7000+ programs at 2300+ B-schools worldwide which includes 140+ Indian Business Schools
Growing popularity and acceptance among Business School aspirants in India
In India itself, the number of B-schools accepting GMAT scores has increased from 37 just a few years ago to 140. A few reasons for this are:
- Scheduling flexibility
- Opportunity for score improvement
- Score validity
Indian B-Schools accepting GMAT scores | Scope of GMAT in India
The IIMs and other top Indian Business Schools accept GMAT scores as well. However, there are 2 things to note here.
- Admission policies of Indian Business Schools are different for domestic and Foreign/NRI applicants for the full-time 2-year MBA programs.
- For executive MBA programs, business schools do not differentiate between domestic and foreign/NRI applicants.
- Point number 1 means that many top Indian Business Schools allow foreign/NRI applicants to submit their GMAT scores while they allow domestic students to only submit their CAT or XAT or NMAT or GATE scores.
- Point Number 2 conveys the idea that these top Indian Business Schools accept GMAT scores for their executive MBA programs
Let’s take a look at the top 20 business schools (according to Business Today) and explore which MBA programs consider the GMAT score for admission purposes for domestic applicants.
Top 20 Indian Business Schools accepting GMAT scores for domestic applicants
MBA programs which accept GMAT
|Min. Work Experience|
|1||Indian Institute of Management, Ahmedabad||PGPX (Post Graduate Programme in Management for Executives)||4 years|
|2||Indian Institute of Management, Calcutta||PGPEX (Post Graduate Programme for Executives)||5 years|
|3||Indian Institute of Management Bangalore||EPGP (Executive Post Graduate Programme in Management||5 years|
|4||XLRI, Jamshedpur||PGDM (General Management Programme)||5 years|
|5||SP Jain Institute of Management & Research (SPJIMR), Mumbai||Full-time PGDM (2 years)||No min. work experience|
|Executive PGDM||5 years|
|6||Management Development Institute, Gurgaon||Not Applicable||2 years|
|7||Faculty of Management Studies (FMS), University of Delhi, Delhi||Not Applicable||5 years|
|8||Indian Institute of Management, Indore||EPGP (ExecutivePost Graduate Programme in Management)||5 years|
|9||Indian Institute of Management, Kozhikode||EPGP(Executive Post Graduate Programme)||5 years|
|10||Indian Institute of Foreign Trade (IIFT), New Delhi||Not Applicable||5 years|
|11||Institute of Management Technology (IMT), Ghaziabad||Full-time PGDM (2 years)||No min. work experience|
|PGDM Executive||5 years|
|12||SVKM’s Narsee Monjee Institute of Management Studies (NMIMS), Mumbai||Not Applicable||No min. work experience|
|13||International Management Institute (IMI), New Delhi||Full-time PGDM (2 years)||No min. work experience|
|Executive PGDM||5 years|
|14||National Institute of Industrial Engineering (NITIE), Mumbai||Not Applicable||No min. work experience|
|15||Great Lakes Institute of Management, Chennai||PGDM||0-2 years|
|16||Indian Institute of Management, Shillong||Not Applicable||No min. work experience|
|17||Vinod Gupta School of Management, IIT Kharagpur||Not Applicable||3 years|
|18||T. A. Pai Management Institute (TAPMI), Manipal||Full-time PGDM (2 years)||No min. work experience|
|19||Symbiosis Institute of Business Management (SIBM), Pune||Not Applicable||No min. work experience|
|20||Department of Management Studies (IIT Delhi), New Delhi||Not Applicable||No min. work experience|
If you are targeting any of the executive programs at IIMs in India, then the GMAT is accepted for admission besides the GRE.
Because of the many advantages that GMAT offers, it is the best alternative to other tests for admission into GMAT score accepting programs.
Cost vs. ROI of MBA in India | Indian Business Schools accepting GMAT
Cost of program and post MBA salaries of B Schools in India
The below table shows the cost of pursuing a graduate-level management program from some of the top business schools in India that accept GMAT scores. The average salary offered after graduation is included in the table as well.
|Rank||Business School||MBA Program||Cost of MBA Program||Average salary post-MBA|
|1||Indian School of Business||PGP||INR 33 Lakhs||INR 22.14 Lakhs|
|2||IIM – Ahmedabad||PGPX||INR 27 Lakhs||INR 24.12 Lakhs|
|3||IIM – Bangalore||EPGP||INR 27 Lakhs||INR 23.46 Lakhs|
|4||IIM – Kolkata||PGPEX||INR 22 Lakhs||INR 24.52 Lakhs|
|5||XLRI, Jamshedpur||PGDM (GPM)||INR 20 Lakhs||INR 18.2 Lakhs|
|6||IIFT||MBA in IB||INR 8 Lakhs||INR 19.23 Lakhs|
Profiles and Placements – GMAT in India
Top recruiters at these schools include Deloitte, Amazon, PwC, Accenture consulting, HSBC, Microsoft and more. Profiles offered to candidates include but are not limited to AVP, consultant, principal consultants, senior manager (M&A), product manager, etc.
Thus, the programs which accept GMAT scores for admission deliver generous Return on Investment. The salaries offered to graduates are at par if not greater than programs that accept other test scores for admission.
For a working professional, the opportunity cost of foregone salary is another factor that needs to be considered while evaluating the cost. The executive programs offered by IIMs or the 1-year program at ISB stands out as the better choice. Both these programs accept GMAT scores for admission.
Thus, if you are a working professional with greater than 3-4 years of work experience and are looking to get hired into leadership roles or looking to switch careers, you should strongly consider executive programs.
Advantages of taking the GMAT for Indian Business Schools
The GMAT has several advantages over other tests which are used to evaluate students for admission into graduate management programs. We will discuss them one by one:
- Retaking and score improvement: Due to the flexible scheduling provided by the GMAT, it has an advantage over other tests such as CAT which are conducted only once a year. This allows you to prepare at your own pace and helps you put your best foot forward.
- Measures and tests writing skills: Leadership roles in organizations require someone who can articulate ideas and proposals. These are the same skills that are measured in the GMAT AWA section.
- Score Validity: Your GMAT score is valid for five years from the date of the test. This presents interesting possibilities such as taking the test and instead of enrolling in a program in the same year you can choose to gain more work experience and exposure. All the while your GMAT score stays valid, and you can apply to enroll in a program anytime within five years of giving the GMAT.
You can read more about the advantages of the GMAT over other tests such as the CAT here.
How to choose the right MBA program according to your profile?
If you are confused about which program is right for you, we will discuss different cases to help you evaluate the right option according to your profile.
Case 1: Fresh graduate
If you are a graduate fresh out of college with little or no full-time work experience, then a 2-year MBA program would be the best choice for the following reasons:
- More time to build a solid foundation: A 2-year program allows more flexibility and time to learn and acquire in-depth knowledge. With more time to build competency and identify potential fields of specialization during the program.
- More opportunities for internships and career changes: The longer program duration and format offer multiple opportunities for internships which help in acquiring real-world business experience. This added time gives the opportunity to experience various aspects of business and better awareness of your strengths and weaknesses.
- More networking opportunities: The comparatively relaxed pace of the program offers the chance to build a lasting network of like-minded peers. Through internships and other group-based activities (group projects and case studies), you can develop your leadership skills which is another added benefit.
Case 2: 2-4 years of work experience:
At this stage in your career, the choice of the program depends on quite a lot on your career goals.
- Career progression or aiming for a leadership role: A full-time executive program would be the best choice because of the following reasons:
- Shorter duration: This reduces the time you spend away from the market. Ensures that you re-enter the workforce sooner and reduces the opportunity cost due to foregone salary.
- Condensed format: Helps you learn the skills needed to supercharge your career and propel you into leadership roles.
- Change of profile or industry: If you aim to switch roles or move to a different industry then a 2-year program makes better sense. Through internships and other networking opportunities, you would get to explore the industry and make a better decision.
Case 3: Greater than five years of work experience
At this stage in your career, there are quite a few options to choose from depending on your goals and expectations after doing an MBA.
- 1 Year full-time MBA Programs
- Full-time Executive programs
- Part-time Executive programs
Scope of GMAT for admission to Indian B Schools is increasing
GMAT as a standardized test is becoming more popular with time in India. We can expect more and more Indian business schools to start accepting GMAT for admission to their MBA programs. At this moment, most Indian Business Schools accept GMAT scores of domestic students for their executive MBA programs. Barring 4-5 Indian Business Schools, all accept CAT/XAT/NMAT or other tests for admission to their full-time MBA programs for Indian Students.
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