HBS to Los Angeles BB

SendIt's picture
Rank: Senior Chimp | 25

I'm a first-year at Harvard Business School with no experience in banking. I recently learned that most BBs do not recruit on-campus for their LA offices. I've contacted several banks and have been instructed to apply through their websites. I understand (i.e. I've read elsewhere on this site) that website applications are only viewed to fill spaces not filled through on-campus recruiting.

A few questions, for anybody who can spare a moment. I'd be most appreciative of any assistance.

  1. Will I be at a disadvantage relative to first-year MBA students whose schools are visited by BBs?
  2. Any suggestions for helping to get my resume more attention than the others that come in through the website?

Thanks very much in advance.

Comments (14)

Dec 5, 2007

you are in HBS...you have absolutely no problem in securing a job with a BB anywhere..just wait for your career fair....

Dec 5, 2007

you can approach HBS careers service who knows a lot of west coast banking.

for some banks, LA recruitment is handled by NY while for other banks, it's done separately. what you should do is go for the NY receptions and ask for referrals to LA contacts. set up telephone informationals etc. and you are on your way.

Dec 5, 2007

Thanks very much for the replies.

I've been a little surprised by how little career services seems to know about IB in LA. Every time I've asked (twice), I've been directed to contact someone at the bank and ask for the West Coast recruiter. I kinda gave up on using career services as a resource for information.

I have one last question, and would be most appreciative of any insight:

Does anybody know how I can find out which banks in LA are doing which type of work? (i.e. I've been told that the GS LA office is weak, but don't know why or what they do.)

WSO is an amazing resource, but I'm wondering if there's anything which consolidates all the info (and can be relied on for accuracy).

Thanks again, VERY much.

Dec 5, 2007

there are definitely people in the top business schools who did not make it to BB banking (~50% success rate from my experience). Being from HBS or any other top school don't even guarantee you a spot on the closed list. It guarantees you an opportunity to network and impress the folks, that's all. That much said, as long as you are not an asshole, not the socially awkward type, not fresh off the boat, and have decent pre-MBA work experience, your chances of making it into the closed list are high.

Dec 6, 2007

only 50%? really? Are you factoring in this year's credit crunch or in general?

So half the people at places like HBS, Wharton, and Chicago can't get a BB IB job even tho they really want one? What do they end up doing?

What about interviews? How many % get interviews?

Dec 5, 2007

I think a 50% success rate sounds about right, which is why I've been stressing over the fact that most LA offices don't visit HBS. Thanks again for your reply.

Dec 5, 2007

banana milkshake is right..your perfomance during the interview is pretty important...i believe there is a post somewhere here on WSO that states that CS is fairly strong in LA...so i suggest you look into CS...and CS likes harvard grads..quite a few of the MDs are from harvard...

Dec 5, 2007

sorry for hijacking, but your post brings up an interesting concern. I guess if students want to eventually work on the west coast (SF, LA), it doesn't make sense to go to an east coast B school.

Aside from Stanford, what are the major Bschools that are heavily recruited by west coast BBs?

Dec 5, 2007

univ. of california berkeley - haas, is pretty good..other than that nothing comes to my mind..they might consider UCLA or USC...but thats about it

Dec 5, 2007

I was in a similar situation. I went to a different top-3 business school and wanted to do IB in a particular regional office.

What worked for me was to reach out to alumni at each bank and set up informational interviews. Everyone was extremely receptive--perhaps because it wasn't common to have someone targeting their office--and made sure that my application made it directly to the right people. I wouldn't bother with online systems or recruiters. One of the biggest advantages of HBS is the network, so you should use it for all it's worth.

If things don't work out in LA for the summer, then working at another of your target-bank's offices would likely be the best alternative. We had a few people who were able to leverage full-time offers in New York for offers in other cities

Dec 6, 2007

Didn't the head of UBS LA go to HBS?

Dec 6, 2007

The head of UBS LA is no longer with UBS, as is true for most of the office. They all left and started Moelis & Co out in LA.

Dec 6, 2007

The new head guy, or the guy that calls the shots, in LA is Weber. He went to HBS.

Dec 7, 2007