The ROI of an Online MBA Program

The online MBA programs at SMU Cox are designed to transform students into business leaders by expanding your network and boosting your career.

A woman sits at a table in front of a laptop and textbook

This blog post was originally published in December 2021, and was revised in June 2023.

Sometimes, life gives you the opportunity to reflect upon your career and develop new professional goals. These times require you to take a personal inventory of what’s important – family, friends, jobs, and career trajectories overall.

One of the questions people often ask themselves after a job transition or major life event is–“Should I go back for a second degree?” One of the most valuable degrees for professionals is the MBA, which more and more universities are now offering online. Not only will an online MBA program expand your career and increase your earning potential, but it also provides you with the opportunity to do all of this with flexibility.

If you're at this pivot point in your life, maybe considering a second degree, this blog is for you. Below, we answer some common questions about how beneficial the SMU Cox Online MBA program can be.

Benefits of an Online MBA

There are a wealth of benefits to earning an MBA. First and least surprising, being an online MBA graduate opens richer career opportunities and increases your earning potential. MBA grads gain confidence, drive outcomes, and earn credibility in the workplace. The right institution also improves self-discipline and develops a student’s ability to solve executive level problems with proven frameworks. Students from top MBA universities – both online and offline – undergo a transformation of leadership and soft skills, which are essential for advancing a career into a management-level position.

Built with a similar curriculum in mind, online MBA programs offer equally personal and professional flexibility when compared to traditional programs. Whether you want to continue accelerating your career, or you don’t want to uproot your family and move to a university town, an online MBA degree (the same degree conferred on traditionally in-person experience) can be at your fingertips from any location. Flexible course schedules are manageable with distance learning because class times cater to working professionals, and students can complete any additional work asynchronously.

Career Path Options for an Online MBA

An online MBA continues to be one of the most in-demand graduate programs offered at universities. This is due, in part, to the versatility and value of an MBA education. An MBA candidate can have a work background in various industries, including marketing, sales, finance, HR, technology, operations, or entrepreneurship. Regardless of industry, online MBA students have the potential to learn and grow valuable skills, which increases their chances of promotions and subsequent pay increases. The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported that many top executives carry a master’s degree and that large corporations’ executives typically hold an MBA.

An online MBA program – like it’s on-ground counterpart – places a heavy emphasis on advanced business and leadership skills, which is why an MBA student is better equipped to take on leadership roles. Students who network with professors, fellow MBA candidates, and university business partners during their MBA program have a better chance of meeting their career goals post-grad. Candidates in an online degree program can maximize their efforts to meet potential employers by attending business networking events and connecting with a university career center.

Salary Expectations for an Online MBA

Pursuing a master’s degree is an investment in your time and resources. When making an important life decision, prospective students should weigh all the costs and determine the potential return on investment (ROI). One of the best ways to calculate an ROI is by researching the impact becoming an MBA graduate can have on your career trajectory and salary.

SMU Cox is proud of the outcomes our students report following the successful completion of our MBA programs. In fact, our students’ salaries are in line with the Graduate Management Admission Council’s (GMAC) 2020 Corporate Recruiters’ survey.

SMU Cox’s Online MBA at a Glance

As part of a well-structured online MBA program, students still benefit from a university’s resources from their remote workspace. Thus, when considering an online program, where you choose to obtain your MBA matters. SMU Cox specifically tailored the Online MBA program to afford students the same graduate degree and resources as students learning the same on-ground MBA curriculum in a formal classroom. Below is an outline of the Online MBA program “at a glance:”

SMU Cox Online MBA Program at a Glance

Duration: 27 months, 52 credit hours Schedule: Part-time, weekday evenings, some optional Saturday mornings Class structure: Live-Online sessions with on-campus access & elective options
Average work experience: 8.1 years Average age: 33 years Immersion: Two 4-day global & domestic immersion experiences

Students in the SMU Cox Online MBA programs accelerate their careers alongside accomplished, motivated peers, and small class sizes averaging 15-20 students create an intimate learning experience. Each 14-week semester carries a 90-minute live meeting for each course. Here are just some of the benefits SMU Cox stands to offer:

Expert Faculty and Leadership: At SMU Cox, your online learning experience will include world-renowned faculty and experienced industry leaders. When not teaching an MBA course, professors are immersed in various business ventures, including consulting for Fortune 500 companies, publishing books, conducting relevant business research, and serving in government.

Support Services and Professional Development: The SMU Cox Career Management Center (CMC) is available to all MBA students, including Online MBA cohorts. It offers various services, including career mapping, salary negotiation guidance, resume review and writing, interview preparation, LinkedIn page design, and networking strategy. The CMC also offers career coaching in 1:1 sessions, small group sessions, and other programming depending on each student’s needs.

A Global Curriculum: With core courses like Data Analysis, Fundamentals of Marketing, and Fundamentals of Finance, Online MBA candidates reinforce a strong business competency. Students also explore advanced courses like Master Negotiation, Executive Leadership, and Mergers & Acquisitions, which paves the way for Online MBA student success at the executive level.

The SMU Cox Advantage: The Online MBA program is designed for driven professionals seeking to leverage their technical skills, leadership best practices, and network of business professionals to gain a competitive edge in the workforce. The SMU Cox Advantage enables students to solve complex business problems through hands-on learning. Students embrace hands-on learning with an experiential learning structure, in addition to global immersion experiences. Online courses carry advanced technology that allows an MBA cohort to collaborate with peers and professors through live classes and intimate breakout groups.

Additional benefits of the SMU Cox Advantage include:

  • A network of global leaders and 40,000+ alumni
  • Access to the stunning SMU Cox campus, extensive resources, and a robust variety of student groups
  • Consideration of a merit-based scholarship, with 60% of students receiving awards

An Online MBA at SMU Cox is worth it

The online MBA programs at SMU Cox are designed to transform students into business leaders. As an SMU Cox MBA graduate, you’ll recognize the value of your online MBA degree by expanding your network and boosting your career. At SMU Cox, connection is at the forefront of our MBA programs. Whether it’s connecting ideas and applying them to the real world, forging bonds with your dynamic classmates, or forming professional relationships amongst the Cox network.

With our Online MBA, you do not have to leave your current job or relocate to access SMU Cox graduate programs, faculty, and extensive corporate partnerships with some of the world’s leading companies. Meet with an enrollment advisor or apply now for the Online MBA or MBA Direct program and become a leader equipped for the future.