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Trust your own skills

8 May 2017

15 percent of MSc in Business graduates work in an international business outside Norway. Laura Kuitunen shares her story on how she got a job at the European Central Bank (ECB) in Frankfurt, Germany.

– I feel that my work is a good match with what I have studied, although it is more about applied economics and finance and less about the theory. I am lucky to be surrounded by so many talented colleagues from everywhere in Europe, which makes the work environment especially inspiring.

Laura Kuitunen graduated with a Master of Science in Business, specialized in economics, this autumn. Before graduating, she secured a trainee position at the European Central Bank (ECB) in Frankfurt, Germany.

"My job is a mix of quantitative and qualitative assignments, which I really enjoy. I write briefings and reports and prepare presentations, but I also work with data, risk indicators and economic models."

Laura Kuitunen

– My job is a mix of quantitative and qualitative assignments, which I really enjoy. I write briefings and reports and prepare presentations, but I also work with data, risk indicators and economic models.

The division Kuitunen works for analyses the risks of the euro area banking sector and develops methodologies for assessing whether the banks’ liquidity and capitalization is sufficient against the risks that they face. She explains that the nature of her assignments depends a lot on the nature of the project.

– The variety of assignments suits me well. Beforehand, I expected more kind of “sitting alone with my dataset”, but fortunately it did not turn out to be so.In some projects, we for example liaise a lot with the Eurosystem national central banks and other stakeholders, whereas other projects are more internal.

More students choose international careers

New figures from BI’s Graduate Job Market Survey for 2017 shows that more students work overseas in international businesses. And the students of MSc in Business stand out.15 percent of MSc in Business graduates work in an international business outside Norway. Pleasing figures says President at BI, Inge Jan Henjesand.

– This shows BI’s academic relevance in the international job market, and that our students are sought after. In an increasingly complex and knowledge intensive employment market, international experience is a major force.

We asked Laura if it was her intention to get an international position as a starting point for her career. Her answer was quite clear.

– Yes, it was my goal to get an international position, although for me this would have included Norway as well. ECB is a unique working environment in the sense that I am at the heart of important economic events and policy setting. Therefore, given my background in economics and finance, it was a natural choice for me to accept the offer of a traineeship.

"In an increasingly complex and knowledge intensive employment market, international experience is a major force."

Inge Jan Henjesand

President of BI Norwegian Business School

 From student to employee

– I feel that I grew professionally and personally a lot during the years of my Master’s. I had a wonderful group of fellow students with whom I got to fully dive into the group assignments and we had a great time doing them together. Writing my master thesis I got to test my capabilities independently and more holistically than in any other assignments.

Kuitunen says that the transition from student life to full-time employment have been easier than she had thought.However, some minor challenges are bound to appear.

– Some purely technical challenges aside, sometimes it is difficult to control my time and deadlines because there can be many changes along the way that we have to adapt to. The work life is definitely more dynamic than my studies.

Last, but not least we had to ask Laura to share some career advice to the employees to come.

– At this early point of the career, I would say that the most difficult thing is to just trust your own skills and capabilities but, in the end, that is what gets the job done – then you will see that the result may not be perfect but at least you can take it from there on. I think it is also very important to seize the opportunities that come by, even though they might be something completely different from what you had planned for yourself.

BI’s Graduate Job Market Survey 2017

  • 40 percent of graduate students used social media in the job search process, a slight increase from 38.8 percent in 2016. 45 percent use acquaintances and personal networks, while 58 percent had contact via the company's website. 6 percent of graduate students say they use newspapers and magazines to get in touch with the company, down from 14 percent the year before.
  • When it comes to work after graduation, a good working environment, personal development and interesting work are the most important factors when BI students choose a job. Salary is only in 9th place, and performance-based pay down to 14th place. Other factors that are important when choosing a job is the opportunity for professional development and that the job is relevant to the education.
  • 82.4 percent of all students found work within six months of graduating. This is a small increase compared with the previous year. 7 of 10 master students are offered employment before graduation.
  • 93.1 percent work in the private sector, which is a decrease of 2.6 percentage points from the previous year.

Percentage increase in wages from 2015 - 2016:

  • Salary without bonus: Bachelor: 2.2, Salary incl. bonus: BSc: 1.5
  • Salary without bonus: Master: 0.7 Salary incl. bonus: MSc: -0.2
  • Salary without bonus: MSc in Business: -0.9 Salary incl. bonus: MSc in Business: -4.8

Average salary:

  • Salary without bonus Bachelor: kr. 378000 (kr. 414000 including bonus)
  • Salary without bonus Master: kr. 447000 (kr. 489000 including bonus)
  • Salary without bonus MSc in Business: kr. 444000 (kr. 478000 including bonus)

The survey:

  • 1257 of 3027 students participated in the survey. The response rate is 41,5
  • The survey was conducted in the period from January 6 to January 22, 2017
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