Recent Grads Prefer Jobs at Goldman Sachs to Google

  • Nancy Miller
  • January 12, 2017
  • 1

© Can Stock Photo / GajusGoldman Sachs nudged Google aside and claimed the No. 1 spot for the most favorite workplace among a survey of 600 students globally, a new survey from Emolument.com reveals.

McKinsey claimed the No. 3 spot.

Goldman Sachs and other investment banks have been fretting that top undergrads prefer tech startups to Wall Street and have been re-vamping their culture, encouraging a better life-work balance. JP Morgan launched a new initiative last year called “pencils down” that gave every weekend off to employees — as long as they weren’t working on a “live” deal. Goldman revamped its recruiting process last year to cast a wider net and identify recruits who will stay longer than two years. They have also been advertising on youth-oriented platforms like Snapchat and Spotify and Vox.

Were the students angling for a high-tech job at Goldman — which is also recasting itself as a cutting-edge technology company? Nope. Hugo Ostyn, a web & data analyst for the crowdsourced pay data company, says in an email that 79% of the students who want to work at Goldman say they want investment banking jobs. Are they just looking for high-paying jobs? And what happens between getting the job and their satisfaction with the payday?

To judge from the results of another survey Emolument released, students get disillusioned quickly: The Fairest Company award, which ranks employee satisfaction with their bonuses, went to Royal Dutch Shell. Not a single bank made the top 10 list.

Ostyn says this is what may be going on:

  • To most students, a $50k+ bonus looks incredibly appealing. For bankers, who have worked 100+ hours a week for that bonus and are well aware it only represents a tiny proportion of the profits they’ve brought to their employer, it might look unfair.
  • Bankers tend to take high bonuses for granted. The fact that bonuses are much lower than before the 2008 crisis still causes frustration, despite high absolute amounts compared to other industries.

It’s hard to keep everyone happy, apparently.

In a statement, Alice Leguay, Co-Founder & COO at Emolument.com says: “While Goldman Sachs has overtaken Google in student’s hearts this year, the question remains: for how long [do] fresh graduates expect to stay in banking? With the financial industry bleeding talent away to technology firms, especially once young bankers have coined their initial experience at a blue chip bank, often perceived as perfecting their education and allowing them to pay off their student loans, before using it as a stepping stone towards a more fulfilling, less regulated industry such as venture capital, private equity or the technology sector.”

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