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Overview

Introduction

Morgan Stanley is one of the most highly respected financial institutions in the world. Its name on your resume will open doors throughout your career. Morgan Stanley is a global leader in M&A, IPO underwriting, investment management, and wealth management. It's also passionate about philanthropic efforts, especially when it comes to assisting children and those in dire financial need. Recently, the firm made great strides when it comes to creating a more diverse workforce.

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Featured Rankings

Vault Banking 25...


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Major Office Locations

Beijing, China...


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CEO

Firsthand Findings

One of the most prestigious financial institutions in the world, Morgan Stanley is looking for well-rounded, hardworking, motivated, driven, personable candidates with strong communication and teamwork skills. For students, the firm runs an excellent internship program, during which interns are exposed to many growth, development, networking, and mentorship opportunities.

For its full-time junior professionals, Morgan Stanley offers extensive formal and informal training opportunities, as well as ample internal mobility opportunities. In addition, the firm’s very collegial culture—in which everyone is willing to help other people and answer questions—fosters a great environment for learning.

While hours can be long and the work demanding, Morgan...

About the Company

New York-headquartered investment banking giant Morgan Stanley is divided into three main businesses: institutional securities, investment management, and wealth management. Institutional securities includes M&A advisory, restructuring, real estate, project finance, capital raising, equity and fixed income sales and trading, and corporate lending. Investment management includes institutional investment products and mutual funds across a range of fixed income, equity, and alternative investments. Wealth management provides financial planning and wealth management services, annuities and insurance, and brokerage and investment advisory services that cover a wide range of investment alternatives.

The firm’s history can be traced to 1935, when J.P. Morgan & Co. partners Henry S. Morgan (grandson of J.P. Morgan) and Haro...

Employee Reviews


  • “Morgan Stanley has been incredibly flexible during the pandemic, understanding that many employees have children being homeschooled or new caregiver responsibilities. I’ve always been given the freedom to arrange my schedule in a way that allows for me to help my children and take them to necessary doctor/school appointments without fear of reprisal. It’s one of the best aspects of the firm.”
  • “Especially since Covid, but even before, the firm has offered a decent amount of flexibility with respect to work hours, vacation/time away, and supporting employees in general. They’re very understanding of personal commitments. It’s a tremendous place to work. But people will contact me at all hours of the day, including weekends, nights, and early mornings if they need something.”
  • “With the WFH virtual transition, I think it will be more acceptable for employees to WFH and have a more flexible schedule. Previously, ‘office time’ was highly valued, but I think this virtual environment has shown that we can all be productive when not in the office, too. But there’s a limited structure on coverage when you’re out of the office (unless it’s maternity leave or a mandatory two-weeker, which not all employees have).”
  • “Morgan Stanley is extremely conscious of work/life balance. They have many ways to help achieve this and are always willing to address concerns. I believe this is one of the firm’s greatest strengths as an employer of choice.”
  • “Compensation is like a hockey stick at the firm. Within your first few years, the increase in salary is minimal, but once you reach a certain level, compensation improves dramatically.”
  • “I really appreciate the firm’s 401(k) match policy and the various company discounts from museum fares to fitness memberships. In terms of room for improvement, I would like a more casual dress policy and flexible hours/WFH policy. MS should also bring maternity leave policy inline with other banks on the Street and extend to five months paid.”
  • “Salary and bonus lags the market. Tenured employees have tended to be hired in at low rates, and then it’s difficult to catch up over time, resulting in significant pay disparities. The firm can also improve the technology offerings for employees to better support flexibility—laptops, mobile phones, etc.”
  • “The best aspects of our firm’s compensation package are the insurance coverage and the vacation we get. The worst aspect is the salary and bonus. Other major firms appear to pay more.”
  • “There’s a vast number of development opportunities and a genuine focus on employee growth and development. Very collegial culture means that everyone is willing to help other people and answer questions, which fosters a great environment for learning. It does very much fall on the individual to pursue these opportunities, so you have to be self-motivated.”
  • “Plentiful opportunities to move across departments. Extensive inter-departmental networking groups and events. Rising stars are encouraged to seek promotional opportunities. As you grow within the firm, the senior positions are more difficult to achieve, and only a certain number of each position can be assumed each year, so your ability to get promoted can depend on current competition. In addition to outstanding performance in your role, networking and strong presentation skills are critical to advancement.”
  • “The analyst new hire training programs are great. They vary greatly division to division, but overall they are great programs to kick off careers. Mentorship programs are both formal and informal and highly encouraged. The online portals are pretty full of practical and usable training.”
  • “The firm has great internal mobility opportunities for those looking and interested, allowing for career development at any level. However, it’s not always known that these opportunities exist internally, especially for more junior level individuals who may be looking for additional guidance on a transition to work toward their overall career goals.”
  • “Great diversity efforts in the recruiting process for junior positions, but limited on the senior management level. On gender diversity, there’s still more women in the HR and marketing and less in front-office roles. It also goes both ways: I think it is helpful to recruit more men in some of the traditionally women-dominated roles. Really positive momentum when it comes to philanthropic efforts and volunteer month.”
  • “Many different initiatives prove that MS management values diversity and inclusion, green, and philanthropic practices. This includes the Employee Network Groups and all of the events they host and sponsor for employees to attend, and the multi-million dollar donation pledge to the NAACP earlier this year.”
  • “The firm has taken a number of strides in the last year in relation to diversity and inclusion. While we may not be there yet, especially when it comes to diversity in all natures in senior management positions, it does appear to be a priority, with active engagement throughout the firm.”
  • “Morgan Stanley is passionate about philanthropic efforts, especially in assisting children and those in great financial need. June is our volunteer month where employees are truly encouraged to participate in any number of activities depending on what they’re passionate about. It’s the first company I’ve worked at where I felt they were genuinely okay with me having to miss work to help. Every month there’s a featured charity or cause, whether on the MS today homepage, in emails, or on our news ticker in Times Square. There’s always an opportunity to contribute!”
  • “The firm’s business outlook is extremely positive for the next 12 months, especially with recently announced strategic initiatives and acquisitions. The overall employee morale is high, especially given the current situation with majority of the firm working from home, and the uncertainty of an end to the pandemic, and what that looks like for the overall job outlook for the world.”
  • “The firm is very open about its strengths, weaknesses, and opportunities. They've made some acquisitions recently that will serve to solidify the firm as a formidable financial services powerhouse. In light of these recent events, I think employee morale is generally very positive, and that is demonstrated by the increase in productivity in this very challenging time.”
  • “Our firm’s business outlooks remains good. Our firm needs to continue diversifying our sources of incomes and businesses, so we’re not heavily relying on the retails or institutional investments alone. The worst aspect of our firm's business outlook is the potential layoffs due to the impact of Covid-19. If the firm can hold off the layoffs as long as it can, then this would be a boost of employee morale. If the firm shows it cares for its employees, employee morale will reflect well on the business performance.”
  • “The pandemic would be a weakness, but the leadership of James Gorman is a major strength, and he has positioned Morgan Stanley to be very successful in the future. The company’s employees are motivated to perform well.”
  • “I acquired key skill sets, had an impactful and engaging experience, and established a great network amongst the interns and full-time professionals.”
  • “The best aspects of my internship were the team I was placed on and the amount of knowledge I gained. Going into the internship I had no business background, and the learning curve was extremely steep, but my team was extremely helpful when explaining things and made me comfortable asking questions. The hardest part was the pressure I put on myself to do well, but it paid off, and was very happy with my internship experience.
  • “Frequent exposure to senior leaders. Programming and events hosted for summer analysts were phenomenal. Work was impactful and often presented to higher-level leaders in the business. All around a great internship experience. Team members and program sponsors made it clear that they care about junior growth and development. Not enough time to meet everyone and attend all of the events offered to us.”
  • “The best part of the internship experience was connecting with the other interns and the great networking opportunities. The people are all very nice at Morgan Stanley. The most challenging aspect of the internship was the stress of trying to get a job offer.”

Wellness Efforts

  • “The firm has been extremely supportive of wellness efforts, even prior to the Covid-19 pandemic, offering counseling, exercise programs, health classes, etc. Since the outbreak of the pandemic, the firm has provided many additional offerings around working from home, stress management, and relaxation techniques, which aide with employees work. They have also offered a number of initiatives for the wellness of employees’ families and children, showing that they care about their employees as people. One of the better wellness perks is the help and resources for new mothers. Never once did I feel that I wouldn’t be able to get through a full day in the office because I was unable to pump or store my breast milk.”
  • “Employee mindfulness program is a great employee benefit and offers meditation sessions weekly. An on-site counselor in the headquarters and frequent health/wellness workshops offered all contribute to the firm’s wellness initiatives.”
  • “The firm has a partnership with Lyra and gives you 16 free sessions per year regarding therapy. The firm also has on-site gym. The firm cares about its employees’ health and well-being, both physical and mental.”
  • “Free therapy sessions for employees is a great resource that I’m taking advantage of now. The gym is affordable and offers easy on-site exercise options. I believe they do generally care about mental and physical health of employees.”

 

Response to Anti-Racist Protests and BLM Movement

  • “The firm’s response was extraordinary, taking action immediately rather than just putting out a statement that the firm stood in support of the movement. Webinars and, more importantly, conversations were held to discuss these important topics, how they affect our colleagues each day, and how everyone can try to make a difference and examine their own behavior.”
  • “Since the spring of 2020, the degree of focus, commitment, and interest in diversity has increased exponentially. The firm has done an outstanding job creating opportunities for learning, facilitated discussion, and has also made tremendous investments for HBCUs, recent diverse graduate programs, and the like.”
  • “I’m very proud of the firm’s response to the violent racial incidences and the Black Lives Matter movement. They have demonstrated their commitment to diversity by promoting two Black women to senior leadership positions in the firm, in addition to making financial contributions to organizations that promote diversity and are fighting for social and economic justice.”
  • “There’s significant senior management support for the BLM movement and recent protests in the form of public statements, financial commitments, and involvement in our diversity network. However, more could be done in terms of actual tangible steps like helping with financial literacy, providing services to underserved segments, etc.”

Response to Covid-19

  • “The best aspect about the firm’s response is that we were given the choice between working from home and from the office when safe. The firm also reimbursed us for any money we spent on getting supplies and electronic devices we needed to work from home.’
  • “MS took a firm stance on protecting employees. We began to work from home early in March and worked with those who were not equipped to work from home to help them get set up. The chairman committed not to lay off any employees throughout 2020. The return-to-work process has been slow and thoughtful, not pushing anyone who’s not ready to return just yet. I do expect we will all return at some point in 2021, but there has been a ton of flexibility through 2020.”
  • “Outstanding response, proactive, transparent, understanding. Technology has been rock solid and supported the move to WFH in a first-class way.”
  • “The firm was able to mobilize the entire workforce, including the branches, in a span of two weeks. They allow flexibility to people, especially those who are taking care of their kids and family members.”

Why Work Here


Getting Hired Here


  • “The ideal candidate is intuitive, smart, engaged, and willing to work hard and be committed to the team. The firm’s interview process varies by position.”
  • “Morgan Stanley is looking for self-motivated individuals who are hardworking and have a good attitude. All employees need to fit into the cooperative culture of Morgan Stanley and work well on teams.”
  • “For a summer analyst position, there are multiple rounds that lead to a Superday. Superday includes mutliple interviews, each one getting more technical. This is followed by a group project with other candidates surrounded by interviewers and HR. An ideal candidate is hardworking, a good team player, eager to learn, friendly, enjoyable to work with, and willing to take initiative.
  • “We’re seeking someone who fits in well with the culture here, and has a strong breadth of interest and experience in the role. Looking for well-rounded, motivated candidates who are excellent communicators and aware of current events, and have diverse experience.”
  • “Doing the right thing is essential at Morgan Stanley and one of our core values. Can you provide an example from your undergraduate education when you found yourself in a conflict that was against your own beliefs? How did you handle and approach the situation? How comfortable have you been speaking up if something did not appear right?”
  • “Tell me about a time when you worked with a group of people who were very different from each other. What was that like? What were the benefits of working in a diverse group? Did any situations arise? How were these issues handled?”
  • “What draws you to Morgan Stanley? To the specific role? How would you describe a successful manager? How do you deal with conflict? Tell me about a time you failed as a leader. Pitch me a stock. What are your greatest strengths/weaknesses? Walk me through the three financial statements.”
  • “Please give me an example of a time when you had to give an honest opinion or assessment of a person or situation, even though you thought it might cause future difficulties for you or others. Please give an example of a time when you were able to successfully identify and defuse potential threats to integrity within your organization. Describe a situation where you had to use different approaches to get the best from different people who were working on an assignment with you. Please provide details of a time when you were part of a cross-functional team and had to deliver against demanding objectives.”

Perks & Benefits