15 Best Tech MBA programs for high-paying salaries and careers in technology, IT

Best Tech MBA programs

In today’s rapidly evolving business environment, technology and technological innovation has become the key for the successful operation and expansion of businesses.

Unlike other industries, the technology sector has witnessed a continuous growth over the past decade. Digital disruption continues to penetrate across industries.

Companies need to constantly adapt or reinvent their business processes and models to remain competitive.

The need of the hour is to have technology leaders with an in-depth industry knowledge, an understanding of business fundamentals and a complete picture of how an organisation works.

According to Statista, the growth rate forecast for the information technology (IT) industry during a 5-year period from 2018 to 2023 is the highest at 104% in the emerging tech segment which includes fields like IoT software, big data/analytics, AR/VR.

During the same period, in other segments like software, the expected growth rate is 50% and in tech services and hardware, it is 23% each.

An MBA program with a tech focus will hone your managerial, strategic decision-making and team leadership skills in addition to providing insights about the industry and building a lifetime network of well-connected peers and alumni coming from various industries and cultural backgrounds.

The MBA careers team can help students identify the right career opportunity and connect with various top employers.

Here’s the list based on rankings provided by QS TopMBA and U.S.News for the best MBA program in technology/information systems.

Most of these programs have been seeing 25-30% of their graduating class being hired for technology roles.
 

Best Technology MBA programs in the world

 

Business School % of 2020 class taking up technology roles
MIT 27.6
Haas 32.4
Stanford 28
Tepper 31.4
Harvard 19
Ross 24.5
McCombs 31.8
Kellogg 28
UCLA Anderson 31.8
Said 23.8
NYU Stern 16.9
Wharton 16.2

(Fintech- 2.1%)

Scheller 32
W. P. Carey 26

 

MIT Sloan

With its focus on innovation, tackling challenges and make an impact, MIT Sloan serves as a top choice for those looking for a perfect combination of technology and business.

MIT has constantly been ranked number one by QS TopMBA based on various parameters including employer reputation, career placements and research strength.

The MBA class of 2020 saw 27.6% of the class take up roles in technology, Amazon and Google being some of the top hirers. The previous class of 2019 saw 30.7% of the class going into technology while for the class of 2018, it was 29.4%.

After completing the core courses in the first semester, students can choose what to pursue during the next three semesters based on their interest area and career requirements.

The entrepreneurship & innovation track is for those with an interest in knowing more on how to launch an innovative technology company.

The enterprise management track prepares students to become business leaders by developing their skills in cross-functional areas including marketing, operations, and strategy.

Students are able to participate in real company projects; the entire experience prepares them for senior positions in large organisations.
 

Berkeley Haas

The Haas School of Business is strategically located in the heart of the vibrant Silicon Valley.

The Bay area houses 2000+ tech companies, and can provide immense opportunities for tech aspirants or start-ups. Leading tech organisations like Apple, Google, Amazon, Microsoft, Autodesk, Samsung are some of those actively hiring Haas MBA grads.

The Haas MBA prepares students to take up crucial roles in modern day companies that rely heavily on technology.

The course curriculum provides a solid foundation, the wide range of electives, the various clubs and conferences allow you to further explore areas of interest and identify relevant career opportunities.

Students pick up relevant skills and expand their network through experiential learning classes with companies like HP, Autodesk, Panasonic, PayPay, Cisco among others.

Students interested in tech career receive expert mentoring from industry specialists, relationship managers and a team of peer advisors on various post-MBA tech roles like product management, product marketing, and business operations.
 

Stanford GSB

Located in the Silicon Valley, Stanford is one of the top elite M7 schools with emphasis on innovation which is reflected in its motto “Change lives. Change organizations. Change the world.”

Stanford’s long-standing reputation and its perfect location in a tech hub attract students with technology backgrounds.

28% of the class of 2020 took up jobs in the technology industry. 18% of the 2020 class went the entrepreneurial way. 33% of the new ventures were in the technology industry.

The MBA curriculum can be tailor-made during the second year so that in addition to the electives, students have the flexibility to take up a joint or dual degree or courses of interest at other Stanford schools.

The career management center at Stanford provides immense support to students mentoring them at every stage of job search so that the career they choose is aligned with their vision and goals.

Students have ample opportunities to build a strong network through various employer networking events, student-organised club events including the vast Stanford GSB alumni community of 30,000 having 60 alumni chapters around the world.
 

CMU – Tepper

The Tepper MBA has always been a favourite destination for those looking for leadership positions in the tech industry.

The full-time MBA class of 2020 had 51.3% of the class coming in with a technical undergrad major.

The curriculum with its focus on advanced analytical and leadership skills prepares students for strategic decision-making roles.

As a part of the MBA curriculum, this bschool offers MBA Tracks and Capstone courses that help you go deeper in the area or industry of your interest.

For example, the technology strategy and product management MBA Track provides an excellent understanding of how technology and business can be integrated and the how the related issues arising in the process need to be handled.

The knowledge and experience thus obtained prepares you to take up leadership positions involving development and execution of technology strategies or launch your own company.

Another interesting MBA track – the management of innovation and product development takes students through a unique innovative journey involving identifying the needs or issues faced by the target audience and based on the findings coming up with specifications of software, product or a service and finally working towards conceptualization and business plan.

 
Best tech MBA For further insights, MBA Crystal Ball caught up with Stephen Rakas, Executive Director of the Masters Career Center at Carnegie Mellon University’s Tepper School of Business.

MCB: What are the most popular roles that MBA students target in tech companies?

Stephen: Roles for MBAs in tech companies span across business functions, including Product Management, Marketing, Finance, Operations and Strategy roles. There’s also been growth in Sales and Business Development roles for MBAs in tech companies.

MCB: What are the top challenges for MBA students hoping to make a career change into tech?

Stephen: Challenges can include a lack of a technical background, effectively translating past experiences as relevant to a technology company and standing out effectively among the sheer numbers of other MBA candidates seeking a similar career change.

MCB: How can they overcome them?

Stephen: MBA students are always encouraged by their career coaches to network within their target companies and to write a resume that highlights relevant, transferrable skills.

The purpose of networking is to learn firsthand about an industry and specific company cultures. Speaking with others who were previously in your shoes provides you with the perspective and feedback needed to improve your candidacy.

For example, a technical background or experience isn’t required for many roles an MBA can find in tech. A background in computer science or engineering may often be desirable for Product Management roles, but it’s not an absolute requirement.

It varies across companies, which MBA students will learn from networking. In general, larger companies tend to have more resources to build product teams that represent a broader set of perspectives.

It will also be important to demonstrate a passion for technology and how it impacts and improves lives. Think about those aspects of technology inspire you the most – is it software, hardware, ecommerce, healthcare, social media, or something else?

Begin to research how the most successful players in the sector grow their customer base and keep ahead of the competition.

Bringing this passion and knowledge to the table will directly support your value proposition and can set you apart from others who haven’t done their research.

 

Harvard Business School

HBS is a dream school for most of the MBA applicants. The school with its focus on case method and other innovative teaching methods brings out the best in the students and prepares them to be business leaders.

There are a variety of electives catered to those inclined towards a career in the tech field.

The digital initiative at HBS with its focus on digital transformation is a great community to connect with.

You’d get a chance to interact with other brilliant individuals passionate about technology and attend various tech events.
 

Cambridge – Judge

Cambridge Judge Business School is among the top UK-based business schools that can provide a boost to your tech career. The University of Cambridge has a strong brand reputation globally.

The diverse peer network and an experienced cohort can add great value to the one-year MBA program. The MBA projects and concentration in your chosen field can be a huge learning experience.

The Cambridge Business School Club (CBSC), special interest groups and societies in tech, retail e-commerce luxury marketing (RELM), fintech, business design & innovation SIG (BDI), entrepreneurship give you a chance to attend various events and collaborate, network and advance your skills.
 

Michigan – Ross

Ross is another well-known top business school. The school provides immense opportunities to those wishing to take their tech career to the next level.

There are several courses including integrated product development, new product and innovation management, big data management, fintech and many more.

The data and business analytics concentration is a good choice for those interested in tech consulting roles.

The MAP projects in tech give students a chance to solve real-world problems with top organisations like Amazon, Facebook and Alphabet even before taking up an internship.

Read What do MBAs do at Google, Amazon, Microsoft, Facebook and other top tech companies.

The recent class saw 25% of its graduates take up tech roles with mean base salary of $131,980. Top tech recruiters include Google, Microsoft, Dell, Amazon.

You can immerse yourself by being part of various initiatives and clubs including the fintech initiative, tech club, west coast forum, data insights and analytics group, design + business club.

The trek to Bay Area and Seattle is a good chance for all those interested in tech to travel to San Francisco Bay area and Seattle to connect and network with potential employers.
 

Texas at Austin – McCombs

McCombs is another good choice for those looking for a career in tech. Here, students have the flexibility to customise more than 70% of the coursework to meet their career objectives.

The MBA+ program comprises various initiatives designed to provide experiential professional development.

This includes seminars and events with industry leaders, personalised business coaching, micro-consulting projects with companies, 45+ clubs to choose from, global connections study tours and exchange programs, fellows programs.

Austin is a rapidly growing tech-hub and the lower cost of living makes it a favourable MBA destination for tech aspirants. This is evident from the fact that 31.8% of the 2020 graduating class took up tech roles.
 

Northwestern – Kellogg

Kellogg is another top M7 business schools that can open doors of opportunities by providing a solid foundation as well as 1000+ experiential learning opportunities.

Students can choose majors and pathway to dive deeper into a particular area of interest.

The technology management pathway covers areas including product management, product marketing management, and business operations/strategy while the data analytics pathways would cover topics including business analytics, marketing research among several others.

These pathways would cover cross-functional series of courses so that students pick up the relevant skill-sets for the roles they’re targeting and as per industry demands.

The center for research in technology and innovation is where innovation serves as the key to bringing ideas to life while collaborating with top leaders from corporations, non-profit organisations and government.
 

UCLA – Anderson

At UCLA Anderson, the Parker career management center is ranked one of the top career centers by the Economist. It provides students immense support throughout their MBA journey.

Through career management tools and practices, they have a structured process in place to help students identify their career goals and move towards achieving it.

The companies that hire MBA grads in technology for internship as well as full-time positions include Microsoft, Google, AT&T, Facebook, Apple, Cisco, Adobe, Epson, Salesforce among others.

80% of the students received landing signing bonuses and 76% received stock and equity options.

The various technology functions in which MBA grads have been hired for include product management, product marketing, business analytics, consulting, operations, strategic planning, corporate finance, human capital, business development, entrepreneurship. The mean base salary in tech is $125,385.

The days-on-the-job treks to Silicon Valley, Seattle & local tech treks provide a lot of insights about the tech industry.

The Easton technology management center arranges workshops, courses and events thus offering various perspectives about the industry and bringing together industry professional, students and faculty, preparing students for leadership roles.

Clubs like technology business association at Anderson (AnderTech) can also be a useful resource.
 

Oxford – Said

Said Business School within the University of Oxford is another top UK business school with a high student diversity. The recent class had 92% international students representing 67 nationalities.

The intense one-year curriculum has core courses and a variety of electives designed to go in-depth into your particular interest area in technology like digital transformation of marketing, media, and advertising, artificial intelligence & advanced analytics in marketing, advertising & retail, project management, strategy & innovation, fintech: present and future: London, global strategy, global sustainable business.
 

NYU – Stern

The full-time MBA program at NYU Stern allows you to customise your curriculum with some interesting tech areas to specialise in including management of technology and operations, tech product management, business analytics, digital marketing, entrepreneurship and innovation, fintech, entertainment, media & technology. Students can choose up to three areas of interest.

You can be part of community and clubs like the Stern technology association, the Stern entrepreneurship and start-up association, fintech association, all of which would be valuable resources for tech careers and tech start- ups and help you build a robust network.
 

Pennsylvania – Wharton

Wharton is another top Ivy League school and a dream school for many. Wharton professors are experts in their chosen field with half of them having their consulting practices with businesses, not-for-profits, and governments around the world.

At Wharton, students have the freedom to choose the core as well as the electives and majors according to their career goals.

Wharton technology conference gives students a chance to network and attend sessions by top technology firms. Tech treks are organised to the Bay area and New York City.

Students can choose to spend a semester in the second year in San Francisco, thus enriching their MBA experience.
 

Georgia Tech – Scheller

Scheller is another bschool that can help students develop skills at the intersection of business, innovation and technology.

Students can choose concentrations from functional areas like information technology management, strategy & innovation or interdisciplinary areas like business analytics, managing innovation & technology.

The immersive tracks in leading innovation combine academics with real-world experience with various top companies and start-ups.

Another initiative by Scheller – Tech Square is something to look out for. An innovation and entrepreneurial hub in the heart of Atlanta’s Midtown, with several top companies having their innovation centers here, this place can provide exciting opportunities for students.
 

ASU – W. P. Carey

At W. P. Carey, the Forward Focus curriculum is constantly re-examined to meet the changing needs of industry and recruiters.

These are some very unique courses included in the curriculum – decision-making with data analytics, future world of work, interdisciplinary applied learning labs, all of which can enhance your overall MBA experience.

You can choose concentrations like business analytics, information management and electives like high tech to help you meet your tech career objectives.
 

 

STEM designation

In the recent years, most of the b-schools have jumped on the bandwagon and got a STEM designation for their MBA programs or launched STEM-designated track or concentrations.

This key development adds a lot of value to the program from an international applicant’s perspective as they’re assured of being able to work for a period of three years after program completion which includes a one-year post-completion OPT and 24 months STEM OPT extension.
 

List of STEM MBA programs in USA

This includes Stanford, Harvard, Wharton, Haas, MIT, Tepper, Ross, Booth, Columbia, Tuck, Yale, Darden, McCombs, Kellogg, Stern, Fuqua, Johnson, Anderson, McDonough, W. P. Carey, Kelley, Goizueta, Kenan Flagler, Mendoza, Marshall, Owen, Rutgers, Babson, among others.

Note that some of the programs in the above list have received STEM designation for the entire MBA program, while in case of others, students have to complete certain tracks, majors or concentrations in order to earn a STEM designated MBA degree.

Read more on the top STEM MBA programs.

 
If you can’t get into any of the top tech MBA programs we’ve listed above, don’t get disappointed.

Many applicants we’ve helped for programs that aren’t conventionally considered to be tech MBA programs, have also got good jobs at the leading tech companies such as Google and Amazon.

Read some of the stories here:

Experience of a candidate who competed with top-tier MBA students to make it into Google
Amazon job offer after internship for Indian MBA student on a full scholarship

Drop us an email if you’d like professional help to get into any of these programs: info [at] mbacrystalball [dot] com

Learn more about:

Technology vs Management Consulting
Technology industry in India and abroad.
Career options in Information Technology
Job Opportunities and average salaries after MIS degrees
 
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Swati
About Swati
After working for over a decade in technical and managerial roles in the corporate world, Swati now works as a freelancer and writes on a variety of topics including education, career guidance and self-improvement.

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