Did not get a good score in CAT? 1. Keep it rational. People get emotional here. Either IIMs or nothing. Focus on the facts and your decision will be better.
2. The end objective is a career in Management. IIMs is not the only path for that. There are at least another 30-40 Bschools which have a very good placement. And every year counts.
3. For freshers do you have a job in hand. Don't create a gap after graduation that will be difficult to explain (1 year can be explained). So if you want to go for CAT 15, get a job so that you gain work ex and avoid a career gap.
4. For working Professionals, how many months of work ex do you have. For people with 36 or more months, join now or plan for GMAT. Work ex beyond 36 months is being seen negatively for most 2 year programs. But please note even a lower MBA is better than a career without it unless you are already in great tech company like Amazon, Google etc.
5. If you spend one more year in CAT preparation, you are losing a year. So to compensate CAT %ile has to improve significantly so that you get better Bschools. Say if you have 80-85 now, you have to get 90-95. If you have 90, then you need 95-99 next year. Small improvements are not worth it.
6. Are they clear areas of improvement in CAT? Were you underprepared this year? If you have done a good preparation, then chances of improvement next year may not be very high. Also if you have already given CAT 2-3 times, perhaps your motivation level and improvement potential may not be high.
7. When you look at ROI, please look at it in a long term or at least a medium term. Yes, i know that Bschools fees are high and i don't like it, but good Bschools are still worth it if you take a 5 year horizon. Compared to Stocks, Real estate etc, education is still the best investment that you can make.
8. Some students are looking at Bank PO etc. Please note that any Bschool in the top 40 will be SIGNIFICANTLY better long term career than government jobs. The stability that government jobs offer comes at a big cost. Your growth will be far slower, increments low (10 year pay commissions), postings, nature of work will be less challenging etc.