2022 On-Cycle

Hi all,
Wanted to put a refresher on this since. Now that most BB/EBs are nearing end of training/starting to get staffed, it's starting to look imminent.

On-cycle for 2020 kicked off mid-October 2018 while last year on-cycle 2021 kicked off September 12, 2019. Even given the pandemic it's possible on-cycle 2022 might start in a month or earlier.

Just wanted to keep this communication fresh.
SG has reached out to most BB IBD for information but no meetings yet.
If you hear updates please update with HH, which PE firms, which group you're in (BB/MM/EB), etc.

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Comments (56)

  • Associate 1 in IB - Cov
Aug 11, 2020 - 3:48pm

Starting to look imminent based on the timing pattern of the last 2 years... hmm I wonder if there's something this year that could potentially affect that pattern

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  • Analyst 1 in IB-M&A
Aug 11, 2020 - 3:58pm

I would assume on-cycle is definitely delayed. By this time last year, people were already meeting / signing up to meet with almost all reputable headhunters. Right now, none of the headhunters are requesting meetings and most haven't even reached out for information.

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  • Analyst 1 in IB - Gen
Aug 13, 2020 - 1:08am

Interesting thing is MS analysts have been on the desk for a month. Some are close to announcing deals already (not many but a few). Seems like they'll have the upper hand the earlier on cycle is

  • Analyst 2 in IB-M&A
Aug 13, 2020 - 1:40pm

Have a close friend who is an associate at a NYC MF PE office. Says they will only plan to hire 1, maybe 2 if they believe the candidates are exceptional, during the first wave of OCR. For reference, the average class size in this office has been 5-6 associates per year.

  • Analyst 1 in IB - Cov
Aug 13, 2020 - 2:05pm

I have heard this is true if on-cycle is virtual / early this year. If it is in-person in say, November or December, I bet the hiring will be fairly similar to years past (hire most of your class on-cycle, leave a few spots open for off-cycle).

Aug 15, 2020 - 8:23pm

Is there even a point to on-cycle recruiting if firms are planning on taking way less people? It seems the risk of losing your gateway with a HH if you don't recruit successfully is now much greater than the reward of getting something through on cycle vs just waiting for off cycle.

Aug 13, 2020 - 2:09pm

It's been said multiples already but deal experience is not very relevant for on-cycle PE interviews. If you've been on the job for 1 month and you are about to announce deal, what do you think you realistically did do drive that process forward? Maybe a few stock price charts and setting up call invites? Interviews are much more about answering technicals correctly, showing that you're a cultural fit, and you have a genuine interest in investing. I repeat deal experience does not matter.

I know many first years in my banking group that got MF offers without ever even going into a VDR. It's a much different story for off-cycle, but any PE firm interviewing fresh grads after a few months of banking won't care about the calendar invites you sent out to "announce" the deal.

  • Analyst 1 in IB - Cov
Aug 13, 2020 - 2:17pm

agreed. even a pitch is fine if you can talk intelligently about the deal (as in you didn't just blindly do whatever but you were thinking thoughtfully about the merits of the deal)

Aug 13, 2020 - 6:43pm

If you're in a group like MS M&A there are definitely deals that begin and sign within 4-6/8 weeks. So those analysts definitely have a huge leg up

“If you ain’t first, you’re last!” - GOAT
Aug 13, 2020 - 10:52pm

I don't think this is true! From speaking with past successful IB -> MF on-cycle: they all said the main focus on interviews was deal experience and more importantly what they thought about the deal from an investing perspective. Obviously they all nailed the LBO and technicals. Again, maybe they don't particularly ask for deal experience in interviews, but this is what the successful candidates all seemed to confirm. I think you really need a step-up especially given how many target school + group first-years are now seeking to get into PE on-cycle and how prevalent all these technical guides/case studies are nowadays. It's easy to study technicals and practice modeling tests but the deal experience is something not replicated so easily/quickly through self-study. Really gotta be in a good group / good deal staffing to have that unique transaction work to talk about, especially with NYC MF associate classes numbering 50 or fewer...


  • 3
  • Prospect in IB-M&A
Aug 15, 2020 - 4:34pm

Said just within his group. (not rest of MS IBD apparently?)

Feb 28, 2021 - 9:21pm

also interested - anyone know / can guess when the on-cycle will start?

  • 1
Apr 8, 2021 - 8:35am

would guess firms are aiming to kick off on-cycle in the Fall; if someone tries to kick it off before then I'm sure the firms would all move quickly

the big reason firms are waiting and not recruiting during COVID is because they value seeing people in-person so not sure people are looking forward to starting recruiting in the next few months before employees are back to the office (correlates with vaccination roll-out and general comfort)

everything is pointing to returning after Labor Day but then again if someone starts it then none of that matters


  • 3
  • Analyst 1 in IB - Cov
Jun 21, 2021 - 5:50pm

Have headhunters already started reaching out and having in-person/virtual meetings? Also, any updates on the on-cycle timeline would be appreciated.

  • Analyst 2 in IB - Cov
Sep 10, 2021 - 12:19pm

Same here - at a BB, haven't had much responsiveness after the initial registrations aside from the tier 2 HHs. Are the tier 1 HHs just swamped or something? No way the cycle kicks off before they have the chance to talk to enough people right?

  • Analyst 1 in IB-M&A
Sep 10, 2021 - 11:53am

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  • Analyst 2 in IB - Cov
Sep 10, 2021 - 11:59am

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Sep 13, 2021 - 1:34am

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