The salary claims of graduates of grandes écoles in (very) sharp increase

Students of the grandes écoles aspire to receive 49,204 euros of minimum gross annual salary. An increase of 21% compared to 2012.

College students dream of high wages from the start of their careers. The latest annual report of the grandes écoles observatory of the Gallileo market research firm was published on Monday, February 10. In total, 1,200 young people in 2nd or 3rd year from 12 prestigious campuses (Polytechnique, CentraleSupélec, HEC, EM Lyon, Essec, Dauphine, etc.) were asked about their (major) salary expectations.

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Upon leaving school, students hope to receive a minimum gross annual salary of € 49,204 upon leaving school. An increase of 4.4% compared to 2019, and 21% compared to 2012. This increase is justified, according to Maher Kassab, CEO of Gallileo: "Companies offer many offers to these students with excellence courses", he explains to Figaro. Companies today need to recruit and the diplomas of the students of the grandes écoles are all the more valuable.

For business students and engineers, the areas of activity that appeal most to them are strategy consulting and management. Sectors which have been recruiting enormously for a few years. “There are many sectors that pay their employees well. These are the companies that recruit the most, so they are the envy of graduates ”, says Maher Kassab.

Different aspirations between men and women

Salary aspirations are not the same between men and women. On average, the students hope to reach an annual salary 10.3% lower than that of boys, that is to say 45,913 euros against 51,205 euros. "It doesn't mean that women want to be paid less, explains the CEO of Gallileo. It’s just that they don’t apply in the same fields as men. They prefer the media, communication or mass consumption. But for the same sector, the salary aspirations are the same. ” Men prefer to apply in the more profitable business banking sector.

"HEC students hope to receive 50,000 euros while EM Lyon students expect around 40,000 euros"Maher Kassab, CEO of Gallileo

The same goes for the schools. Some students have very different salary ideas from one course to another. "For example, we have students from the HEC business school who hope to receive 50,000 euros, and students from EM Lyon who expect around 40,000 euros", notes Maher Kassab.

A good salary, but also a good living environment

But salary is not the most vital criterion for students. Only 33% of them consider it the most important parameter in their professional life. Another third places great interest in the living environment. "Employers must choose their recruitment strategy based on these different values", comments the CEO of the expert firm. At 19%, the prestige of the company is also important for young people.

The international is also a major pillar of the professional life of young people. According to Gallileo’s study, there is a great desire to go abroad to work after graduation. "The academic paths of students are always more international", underlines Maher Kassab. For 15% of the students questioned, it is only a question of applying internationally.