Salary and earning potential for MBA graduates

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Salary and earning potential for MBA graduates

Pursuing an MBA can significantly boost earning potential. However, salaries vary based on the job location, industry, the graduate’s experience level and the hiring company. Aside from the benefit of increased income, an MBA also offers stability, networking opportunities, and transferable skills. Today we talk about the impact of an MBA on your salary and earning potential. 

Job outlook and salary

An MBA is usually listed as a necessary qualification for higher-level positions, and these leadership roles usually come with desirably high salaries that can make the challenging journey to reach them entirely worth it in the end. MBA graduates enjoy a wide range of opportunities in a variety of industries, including management, business development, finance, marketing and consulting.

When it comes to salary, perhaps a better question to ask is “What is a reasonable MBA salary increase to expect?”. While pursuing an MBA degree is a considerable investment in both time and money, MBA graduates in Europe may, on average, increase their salary by up to 85% more than those with a bachelor’s degree alone. 

MBA salaries by European countries

One of the most alluring aspects of an MBA is the substantial salary increase you can expect post-graduation. But which countries provide the highest MBA salaries? Below are the top 5 average salaries across Europe.


Switzerland is the highest-paying country for MBA graduates. It is the seventh richest country in the world and a hub for many industries, most notably the banking sector, pharmaceutical industry, and watches. MBA graduates can expect an average salary of ₣150,000 (or €158,000) per year.

United Kingdom

London is the second most competitive financial centre in the world, housing the headquarters of banking powerhouses like HSBC and Barclays. It is also the fifth best country in Europe for MBA salaries where graduates can expect an average salary of £70,000 (or €81,000) per year.


Given that Germany is the largest economy in Europe, it is not a surprise that it ranks among the top countries in the world for MBA salaries. With global business centres such as Berlin, Frankfurt, and Munich, MBA graduates have a wide variety of industries to choose from and can expect an average salary of €72,500 per year.


With impressive post-graduation salaries, France makes the list as the third-best country in Europe for working with an MBA qualification. As home to some of the biggest global companies, MBA graduates can expect an average salary of €70,000 per year.


For those working in manufacturing industries, Italy can be a great destination for pursuing a job with an MBA qualification. Being the second largest manufacturer in the EU behind Germany, MBA graduates in Italy can expect an average salary of €50,000 per year.

MBA salaries by industry

An MBA salary varies not only by the specialisation and experience but also by the chosen industry. According to a recent survey by US News, the average salary of MBA graduates in the consulting sector is the highest, while those employed in the government sector typically have the lowest salaries. The hierarchy should not be too different for Europe.

Here are the top 5 industries:

  • Consulting - average salary of $152,470 per year
  • Finance - average salary of $129,889 per year
  • Technology - average salary of $124,289 per year
  • Healthcare - average salary of $118,004 per year
  • Media/Entertainment - average salary of $109,846 per year

Other factors impacting MBA salaries

In addition to location and industry, several other factors can also influence the salary you can enjoy as an MBA graduate. For example, the demand for specific roles, particularly ones that require hard-to-find skill sets, may lead hiring managers to offer increased compensation for them in a competitive job market.

Furthermore, a significant portion of your salary and salary increase may come from relevant work experience. This may be the case if you are looking for a new opportunity with a new organisation after you graduate or if you are working while earning your degree and intend to stay with the same company.

Thanks for taking the time to read our blog post on salary and earning potential for MBA graduates. If you are thinking about studying abroad, take a look at our distance learning MBA programme

At PFH we make sure you receive a high-quality education that makes balancing your work and studies easier!