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What’s Facebook Looking for in MBA Hires?

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These days, it seems like everyone and their mother is on Facebook—no, really, your mom sent me a friend request last week. Your family vacation looked like a blast! As more and more people subscribe to the undisputed king of social media, Facebook seems to hire more and more MBAs to continue to move the company forward into the future.

Facebook was famously started by a college dropout, but that doesn’t mean the tech company doesn’t value accomplished business students with impressive résumés. Let’s take a deeper dive into how Facebook recruits new MBA talent to the company.

Who Is Facebook Looking for in New Hires?

How much does Facebook value MBA degrees? Some answers may surprise you:

In a Quora thread a few years ago, Facebook COO Sheryl Sandberg famously said “MBAs are not necessary at Facebook and I don’t believe they are important for working in the tech industry.” Now, Sandberg (who earned an MBA at Harvard in ’95) may have a point—you don’t officially need an advanced business degree to make it in the world of tech. However, as Business Insider points out, most hiring managers in Silicon Valley don’t necessary agree with Sandberg, even those currently working for Facebook.

In fact, research suggests that Silicon Valley overwhelmingly wants MBAs. Tapwage, a job discovery startup, analyzed more than 100,000 job postings to see how many hiring managers listed the advanced degree as criteria for selection. Looking specifically at Facebook, the analysis found that the company had 75 jobs postings that either had a preference for an MBA, or required one—9 percent of total openings. Other tech companies like Google, Amazon, and Apple featured similar averages. Interestingly enough, Tapwage concluded that MBAs were actually in higher demand at tech companies than on Wall Street. Numbers show Facebook looks for three times as many MBAs as Goldman Sachs.

While hiring managers in Silicon Valley—and more specifically Facebook—are clearly looking for fresh MBA talent, recent grads are also excited to enter the tech sector. According to CNN, almost 10 percent of MBAs want to work for Facebook.

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“As we grow, we have a set of unique problems and challenges that are somewhat unprecedented for other companies in our industry,” Adam Ward, Facebook’s head of university recruiting, told CNN. “MBA students love challenges, they love tough problems. It’s become a great marriage.”

How to Get Your Foot in the Door?

According to Ward, Facebook looks for MBAs “who want to roll their sleeves up and build things, solve problems, take risks, and be creative with the problems we face.” While the company doesn’t disclose its plans for hiring, Facebook’s three-month internship program is considered the best route to a full-time job offer.

According to Vault, Facebook consistently has one of the top-ranked internship programs in the country. Interns have said the program boosts self-confidence and helps create a foundation that carries over into successful careers at Facebook and elsewhere. More than 1,000 interns pass through Facebook each year.

“Our intern program is one of the best ways to identify the next generation of Facebook talent,” Hyla Wallis, university programs and operations manager at Facebook, told TODAY. Each intern is given a final review before he or she leaves, with some being offered a full-time position. “We want to make sure that every intern that joins has the opportunity for the full-time offer,” Wallis added.

Last summer, Fast Company published a guide outlining “What It Really Takes to Get an Internship at Google, Facebook, Apple, and More.” According to that article, prospective interns should follow these steps if they want to get into one of these tech giants:

  1. Start the process early
  2. Get some practical experience
  3. Know how to build something
  4. Understand the products inside and out
  5. Have a unique value proposition

What Do Current and Former Interns Think?

TODAY spoke with current and former Facebook interns and asked them to share how they landed their internships and some of the experiences they’ve gained through the program:

Marion Xu, junior, current software engineer intern:

“I have a background in computer science. I got involved and got pretty passionate. I prepared a lot for the interviews, looked at a bunch of different resources,” she said. “They had a technical challenge so I went online and did practice problems.”

Javier Fraire, current software engineer intern:

“It was definitely one of the best experiences of my life. The benefits of a hackathon is getting great product ideas. A lot of our products come from hackathons. In fact, this year I worked on a feature during a hackathon that will be shipping in the next few weeks.”

Devon Porter, business operations, former intern:

“Facebook expects their interns to do the same work as a full-time employee. There’s a lot of responsibility and autonomy given to you on day one, so in a very short period of time you gain a huge amount of hands-on experience.”

How Much Are New Facebook Hires Compensated?

One of the benefits of working at Facebook, or in the tech sector in general, is the salary. An article published by CNBC shows that major companies don’t skimp when it comes to starting salaries and other benefits. A recent poll shows that companies like Facebook, Google, Snapchat, and Twitter can offer six-figure annual salaries to new graduates, not to mention additional stipends, stock options, and signing bonuses. Facebook specifically offers the following compensation to new hires on average:

    • Annual base salary: $107,000
    • Stock/stipend per year: $37,500
    • Signing bonus: $75,000 to $100,000

For more information on open Facebook positions for business school students, head to the company’s official grad school recruitment page.

Want to know what other companies are actively looking for MBAs? Check out some of our favorites here.

This post has been republished in its entirety from its original source,