MBA Job Opportunities in Central and Eastern Europe |

MBA Job Opportunities in Central and Eastern Europe

By QS Contributor

Updated October 1, 2014 Updated October 1, 2014

Having established itself as one of the fastest growing markets in the world, Central and Eastern Europe holds many opportunities for MBA job seekers.

In an overview of some of the MBA job opportunities in the region, asks recruiters what they are looking for when hiring MBA graduates in Central and Eastern Europe (CEE) and what can be gained career-wise for those who manage to get jobs in the region.

Despite the overall slowdown in recruitment around the world, top companies are still looking for the best candidates to supplement their internal pipeline. In CEE, job opportunities look even more appealing, as the multinationals' subsidiaries need highly educated people in order to meet their business plans in the region.

Statistically speaking, the unemployment rate is around 8% in CEE countries, compared to a 9.9% rate in the Eurozone. In countries like Austria – both a Eurozone country and a business hub in CEE - the situation is far better, with an unemployment rate of only 4.8%.

Recruiters not only appreciate what an MBA can deliver to their organizations, but have also put in place special career programs for MBA graduates and even students who have not yet completed their MBA.

Pharmaceutical MBA jobs

AstraZeneca, an integrated global prescription-based biopharmaceutical business, with revenues of almost US$33 billion, developed the Global Commercial MBA Program, which aims to recruit world-class MBAs each year from various industry backgrounds.

The pharmaceutical business is expanding its presence in CEE and is now recruiting for opportunities in both commercial and financial streams of the MBA graduate program.

MBAs with strong commercial and strategic acumen, the ability to lead and inspire, as well as communicate well and influence are invited to apply. However, fluency in two or more languages and a willingness to relocate internationally will ensure successful applicants gain maximum advantage of the international career path within the company.

Recent openings at AstraZeneca have included the position of associate business director at the CEEMEA (Central and Eastern Europe, Middle East, and Africa) region headquartered in Belgium, a marketing manager role within the company’s Ukrainian marketing arm and a finance manager role in Kazakhstan.

If you don’t have pharmaceutical specific experience, don’t feel discouraged.

“MBA graduates from various industries can bring new ways of thinking and skills, which are essential in the current ever changing environment,” say the officials at AstraZeneca.

As part of the company's program, you will rotate into challenging new roles every 18-24 months, and will be given an array of training and career development to be supported along the way.

MBA jobs in banking

Moving to another traditional MBA recruiting industry, UniCredit, a major financial institution with an international network in 50 international markets, is also on the hunt for MBA graduates in the region.

“Currently we have openings in Warsaw for positions in corporate finance advisory, and Vienna, which is our governance hub for the CEE, in the loan syndication department”, says Piotr Langer, head of group employer branding at UniManagement, the learning center of UniCredit Group.

On a regular basis, UniCredit Group recruits MBA graduates through its Corporate and Investment Graduate Program, designed to fast-track the start of professional careers.

Generally, the group looks for mobile candidates in terms of a cross-country or regional basis, open to networking and willing to adapt to a rapidly changing environment. When considering MBA candidates, a good academic track record is required – both in terms of GPA and also social and academic engagements, as well as professional experience in a field related to banking. Aside from fluency in English, for local positions, knowledge of the domestic language is highly beneficial.

“The MBA graduates represent a solid level of formal knowledge and already hold a recognized international internship or project based experience. Most of them are greatly focused on an international career, perfect for UniCredit which has franchises spanning in Eastern and Western Europe,” adds Langer.

Consultancy jobs for MBAs

If you feel like pursuing a career in consultancy, think about Roland Berger Strategy Consultants, one of the leading international players, with 39 offices around the world, out of which nine are located in the CEE.

“A fresh MBA graduate can put to work and further enhance, from day one, all skills gained during the MBA,” explains Alina Florean, senior consultant at the Bucharest office of Roland Berger Strategy Consultants.

“Furthermore, given the complexity of the issues addressed and the high level of interaction with the client's top management, a post-MBA job in management consulting will allow them to rapidly develop new skills and to speed up their career progression.”

The consultancy is not only ‘very interested’ in recruiting MBA graduates for all offices around the world, but also supports its own employees to pursue an MBA at many of the top business schools.

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This article was originally published in November 2012 . It was last updated in October 2014

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