A Babson Joint Management Consulting Field Experience (JMCFE) Team has earned a Third Place Prize in the field of marketing at the 2014 WTT Young Leader Competition ceremonies September 23rd in Saint Gallen, Switzerland.
Professor Dwight Gertz, Babson program faculty advisor, accepted the award on behalf of Babson team members Santiago Quinones, Mustafa Ozkanli, and Anibha Singh. Other team members were Ardian Aliu, Kosovare Miftari and Emanuel Ledergerber of the University of Applied Sciences, St. Gallen.
“This project provided our students with an opportunity to learn about a complex international marketplace and to develop practical tools to be used by their client. We are pleased with the work the students have done in interviewing international experts on the market and in developing a Market Intelligence System,” said Babson Coach/Prof. Dwight Gertz and FHS Coach/Dr. Benjamin von Walter.
“I want to commend the students for the project Turning Data into Insights completed with Vectronix. I appreciate the competent and timely manner in which the students have completed this project. We believe that our company received an excellent both theoretical and practical framework to navigate through the challenging market environment,” said Richard Flax, Marketing & Communications Manager of client Vectronix AG, Heerbrugg.
Finalists were selected from a field of 60 teams.
Project: Turning Data Into Insights
Over the last few years, Vectronix AG has been experiencing increasing uncertainty in their markets. The aim of this project is to design a market intelligence system which will help the firm leverage key data and information to make strategic decisions that will allow Vectronix to enhance its position in current markets and enter new markets.
About Vectronix AG
Vectronix began in 1921 as a manufacturer of specialized optical precision instruments. Located in Heerbrugg, Switzerland, Vectronix has become a leader in the development of instruments for observation, detection, geopositioning and targeting. With a focus on the military and security markets, Vectronix currently sells handheld and mounted equipment, modules, and observation systems. Vectronix’ operations in Switzerland and the United States give the company a strong global presence.
Primary and secondary research enabled the team to generate a valuable market intelligence system design. Through conducting 19 expert interviews, the team was able to gather information from industry professionals, internal company employees, and academicians.
Secondary research was also conducted by referring to information from newsletters, official websites, books and magazines. The team systematically structured these sources. The team also attended a conference about web application platforms for content management to learn how to create an effective user-interface model.
Following the research phase of the project, the team defined key performance Indicators (KPIs) in order to effectively structure raw data. With the KPIs as a general framework, the team went on to identify specific sources for each KPI. By identifying sources and their roles in the various KPIs, the goal was to allow Vectronix employees to systematically obtain, categorize, process and update needed information.
Once the relevant data was organized, the team created a design for the market intelligence system using Microsoft SharePoint, a web application platform already used by the company. Information flows were then generated to display processes to manage content. Finally, with a flexible market intelligence system design, Vectronix can develop insightful market-entry strategies as well as increase competitive advantage in existing markets.
JMCFE Program Overview
The Joint Management Consulting Field Experience (JMCFE) program is one of Babson’s innovative approaches to creating well-rounded managers with the benefit of a practical international business experience. JMCFE takes the consulting experience global with international corporate sponsors and project assignments that address current business concerns in one or more functional areas. These include industry, marketing and competitive analyses, business development and strategy. Student teams gain practical experience as consultants, solving current business problems while developing their international business and teamwork skills.
JMCFE teams are comprised of students from Babson and our partner institution, FHS-WTT St. Gallen (Switzerland), and their respective faculty advisors. Advisors guide the team through the consulting process; however, all project work is completed entirely by the student team members. Two Babson teams of three travel abroad in early January to begin the project. The week-long visit includes a home stay with their student counterparts, an introduction to, and tour of, the sponsoring company and the project kick-off. After their return to campus, Babson students and their counterparts work virtually to complete the project work. The program concludes in approximately 15 weeks with a final presentation to the sponsor in mid-April at Babson. Students plan for 10-12 hours/week during the semester, in addition to a heavy workload during the presentation week in mid-April. Students interested in working internationally, consulting in the international field or gaining international experience are recommended to apply for this program.