What is a good (safe) GMAT score to secure an ISB interview invite?

The average GMAT score of ISB’s 2023 Class is 720 with the mid 80% range being 690-760. Therefore, conservatively, any score which is to the north of 730 should get you an interview invite, assuming other components of your application are reasonably competitive. Please note that the chances of receiving the interview invite are a function of 5 components- GMAT/ GRE score, essays (application), recommendations, work experience and educational background. Therefore, it is important to find the right balance between these components.

At the risk of oversimplifying the evaluation process, let’s broadly segment the candidate profiles into 5 clusters based on their educational backgrounds and take a look at their respective scores. This is just one of several ways to dissect a candidate’s profile. For example, segmenting the profiles based on work experiences will tell us that the IT work experience pool is the most competitive cluster due to a large number of candidates applying for admissions. Please refer to the disclaimers towards the end before consuming the contents of this article.

  1. Engineers from tier-1 colleges (eg: IITs, BITS, etc.): This cluster tends to have the highest GMAT score. If you are someone from this cluster, we believe your target GMAT score should be at least 730 - just to be on the safer side - as you would be pegged against other candidates in this cluster (this rationale applies for all the below clusters as well).
  2. Other engineers: This cluster tends to have a lesser GMAT score compared to the previous cluster. If you are from this cluster, you should target at least a score of 710.
  3. CAs: Our understanding is this cluster would have the largest GMAT score range and a safe GMAT score for candidates in this cluster would be over 710.
  4. Other profiles candidates from non-engineering, non-CA backgrounds: Candidates in this cluster should target a GMAT score of at least 700. Please note that the diversity factor would be an added advantage to candidates in this cluster.
  5. Outlier profiles candidates: This cluster would comprise of candidates from backgrounds like army, and other disciplines like MBBS & PhDs (not comprehensive). This cluster would have the lowest GMAT score of all the above clusters. A safe GMAT score for candidates would be somewhere in the lower half of the mid-80% range of ISB’s GMAT score.


  1. This article is purely based on our observation (no quantitative backup) from multiple interactions with potential ISB candidates, current students and alumni over the last 3 years.
  2. There will obviously be exceptions to these clusters because a lot of other factors are taken into consideration while evaluating a candidate (not just educational background as mentioned in the beginning of the article). Therefore, one should not be discouraged from applying to ISB if your score does not fall in a particular range.

We are a bunch of ISB alums who help potential ISB candidates with profile positioning, essays review and interview mocks. Feel free to ping us in case of any questions.

With warm regards,

I’m from pharma background and looking to take the GMAT exam early next year. Could you please share few tips something related to solving math questions,?