Post-MBA Recruiting At Top Asset Managers / LOs
I found recruiting to be a little bit of a block box, so I figured I'd share my experience on here. Please feel free to chime in since some of this will be unique to my experience:
Background: at a top MBA program. Recruited at both the big LOs (will focus on on those here) and a handful of hedge funds (tiger cubs and the like). My background is IB/PE
- Timing: you have a month or two to settle in before the coffee chats start. Then it's a slog between networking and prepping until interviews start in January. Interview scheduling can get insane (and you may even need to make some tough decisions about which ones to not show up to since conflicts abound). Silver lining is it's fast and furious once it starts, with offers generally in by end of January
- Networking: is important, albeit not as important as it is in consulting/banking. If you have an untraditional background or are coming from non-HSW, it becomes a lot more important. You need to find champions at the firms you want to work at and you need to practice like crazy because the competition is intense and the seats are few. Grab coffee with all the second years at your school and try and find some mentors who can guide you through the interview process and firm idiosyncrasies. The nice thing about networking is that you should leave this period with a much clearer picture of whether LO or L/S is a better fit
- Interviews: most common cadence is one or two first round interviews followed by a with a bunch of back to back 30min interviews. You will also see take home case studies. Have 2 longs and one short (assuming you interview for L/S too, which I highly recommend given there are so few quality LO funds). Have a couple more stocks you can talk very high level about (for the classic what's in your PA question - don't get tripped up). 50% of your interviews will be how good are you pitches, so practice is the name of the game. Start early and get feedback from everyone who will hear you out. Don't forget to do primary/creative work. The most common pitfall is not keeping it short and focused. The other 50% is passion and fit. The best investors are absolutely obsessed with stocks. You probably won't be yet at this stage in the game, so it will come down to how badly do you want it.
- Capital Group: generally take 3 interns, usually from HBS and GSB, but certainly not impossible from elsewhere if you grind. Likewise prefer PE or public equities backgrounds but again doable if not. Networking in general is very important with Capital because it's such an independent/autonomous life as an Analyst there, so they really want to get to know you beforehand and make sure you'll be a good fit. My sense is they're comfortable giving everyone an offer if all their interns are superstars, 0 if they're not convinced. Being an Analyst at Capital is like being a quasi-PM out the gate, so the bar is high
- Wellington: only occasionally has a structured recruiting program, so will generally need to network heavily to get a foot in the door. Was more active last year, took 3 interns (I think one offer). Generally more open to diverse backgrounds than Capital (Booth and MIT do better, non publics / PE backgrounds have a shot)
- : little need to network and generally prefers the blue-chip backgrounds. Notorious for a bad conversion rate (interns/offer ratio), but trying to change that reputation. Have a 24hr take home case study called the "p-test" as part of their process
- T Rowe: networking the most important here. Make a huge effort to get to know candidates before interviews (honestly think it's because they're trying to really gauge if you're actually willing to move to Baltimore). Has easily the most opportunities out of all the big LOs given the recent split. Very focused on diversity right now. Had 6 interns and gave out at least 5 offers.
- Dodge & Cox: usually takes one intern, gives out a FT offer ~half the time. Can afford to be picky
- MFS: historically will give out 2-5 offers and conversion high. Has struggled recently to attract the top candidates- have noticed they lose a lot to T Rowe
- Other: don't know as much about this cohort. Franklin Templeton, Orbis, Alger, American Century, (rarely fundamental team), NB- you generally see most on campus. Depending on your school you might see the high quality boutiques as well (e.g., PrimeCap, RCG, Baron, GAMCO, Harris, Royce) - but generally will need to network like crazy to get a foot in the door at these. Focused on equities so left out the guys ( )