How to Pick the Right MBA Specialization?

How to Pick the Right MBA Specialization?

How to Pick the Right MBA Specialization?

An MBA program’s initial phase (usually the first year of a two-year program) is devoted to core courses. The aim is to lay a solid foundation of basic concepts across a wide range of management subjects. In the latter part of the program, you can specialize in a particular field.

The area in which you wish to specialize may be influenced by a number of factors. As per your preference, you can choose a field based on the market demand (job availability), your interest area, preferred job profiles, and compensation package.

 List of MBA Specializations:

Listed below are the most popular MBA specializations in no particular order:


  Human Resources


  Information Systems



  Operations Management

Let’s look at each one of them.

  1. Marketing

In order to sustain long-term profitability for your products or services, you must have competitive positioning and excellent marketing skills, including the ability to differentiate your product and create a niche.

Any organisation’s marketing department plays a crucial role in bringing in new clients, increasing revenue, increasing market share, and contributing to the growth and profitability of the company.

In this specialisation, students will gain insight into several key areas required by every corporation or organization, including market research, competitive analysis, consumer behavior, customer analysis, business ethics, product management, brand management, advertising, digital marketing, and e-commerce, among others.

You can explore careers in a wide range of fields if you have an MBA in marketing, whether you are interested in market research, advertising, sales/distribution of FMCG (fast moving consumer goods), consumer durables, or IT sales, media, marketing of services, or internet marketing.

  1. Human Resources

HR specializations prepare you to acquire, manage, and retain talent within an organization.

You will gain knowledge and skills in managing employees and executing the related work processes within a company, covering a variety of aspects including recruitment, selection, training and development, job design, assessments, motivation (promotions and rewarding employee performance), health and safety, compensation, and managing exits from a company.

It also involves managing management-employee relationships. A cordial relationship between them is necessary for the smooth functioning and success of the organization. In addition, they may be required to participate in office activities such as get-togethers and off-site visits.

  1. Finance

According to Top MBA, this area accounts for around 22% of post-MBA career choices. Some finance-related jobs offer irresistible pay packages, which may explain the high influx of MBAs into the field.

Through this specialization, you’ll gain an understanding of how the financial world works, the various financial theories, and how these can be used to solve various business problems.

Investment banking, asset management firms, hedge funds or private equity, portfolio management, credit risk management, hedge fund management or derivatives could be your career choice. Various finance jobs are available even in non-financial companies or firms.

  1. Information Systems

There’s a growing demand for professionals with advanced technical expertise combined with business knowledge since technology has extended into almost every industry and sector.

By specializing in e-commerce, you will have a deeper understanding of the changes in the competitive business environment; you will have gained technical knowledge of emerging IT technologies.

In this specialization, you may study systems analysis, network security, data analytics, supply chain management, e-business, managerial decision-making, and project management.

  1. Consulting

Another popular choice is consulting, perhaps a dream destination for some. A high profile job offering good salaries with perks and the opportunity to travel is primarily responsible for the allure of this career path.

A consultant is hired when an outsider’s expertise is needed to provide solutions to specific problems or challenges in an organization or take charge of projects beyond the capacity of the internal staff.

As part of the consulting profession, there are a variety of sectors ranging from the more popular ones like strategy consulting, IT/technology consulting, operations consulting, boutique consulting to the lesser known ones like HR, investments, public relations/media, education or advertising.

It is possible for those who opt for this profession to boast about the wide range of projects they handle for various clients in a variety of industries or geographic locations. However, you should examine the working hours since some of these factors may affect your work-life balance.

  1. Entrepreneurship

In this concentration, you will develop the knowledge, skills, and concepts needed to launch your own start-up and network with others with similar visions. When limited resources are available, it is challenging for entrepreneurs to build a business model.

As a result, the curriculum combines theory with real-world projects so that you are aware of potential roadblocks and know how to handle different situations successfully.

In order to create a business plan, you would need to use your creativity and analyze the market scenario. As a result, you’ll be able to interact with successful entrepreneurs and learn from their successes and failures.

  1. Operations management

With the knowledge of operations management, you would be able to efficiently manage the entire system related to manufacturing or services in a way that would provide the organization with a competitive edge.

The newer perspectives and analytical skills brought in by the MBA grads can help address the varying challenges associated with managing the entire process which includes product design, manufacture, supply chain management, quality control, coordination between various teams, as well as outsourcing decisions.

Although the above specialisations are usually the most popular, your bschool may offer other specializations as well.

List of other MBA specialisation based on Industry

The earlier list focused on functional specialisation, but you could also focus on an industry. Here’s a representative list of industry specialisation.

  • Health / Pharmaceuticals / Biotech
  • Media/entertainment/sports
  • Non-Profit

A) Health / Pharmaceuticals / Biotech

This program is designed for professionals looking to pursue careers in pharmaceuticals, healthcare, diagnostics, or biotechnology. The course covers legal, ethical, and regulatory aspects of the pharmaceutical sector as well as product management and marketing research for new products.

B) Media/entertainment/sports

The specialisation prepares students for management careers in media and other creative fields. The course provides you with knowledge of various key factors in media management. There are a variety of topics taught, such as music, publishing, theatre, sports, and radio.

C) Non-profit

Students are prepared to contribute to the social sector through this program. 

A variety of community change solutions, fundraising, marketing, and the allocation of funds are taught to help them achieve the success of their non-profit organization.

There are also specializations in international business, strategy, supply chain management, or construction management.

A career choice that aligns with your interests always works in your favor when selecting an MBA specialization area. Choosing a field for its glamour or salary may not sustain your long-term interest, and you may experience burnout after a few years.

Before you take the plunge, take your time to think; use your internship opportunities as a testing ground.

All the Best. 

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