Over the past few years we have hosted a number of student teams. They bring fresh perspectives, thorough analysis and deliver ideas that provoke conversations at the bank. Steven Aney, Head of Risk Methodology, ANZ
How do I benefit?
- Engage with the next generation of business leaders
- Obtain implementable solutions to your business’ challenges
- Consulting teams have well-developed problem solving, IT and communication skills, often with multi-lingual skills and are managed by a dedicated and experienced project lead
- Receive a detailed written report and presentation on key recommendations
- Connect with academic activities and form a research collaboration
- No cost to take part and insurance is covered by the University
For over a decade, we have provided high-calibre student teams to deliver actionable business solutions to strategic questions posed by industry.
We have worked with a range of global partners, including the major banks, Big Four, listed multinationals through to community-sector and start-up organisations. Our partners have benefited from the insight our project teams have created.
By taking part in this program, your organisation will benefit from the valuable application of the latest theory and research methods to address your business challenges.
How does it work?
We consult with you to define a project of strategic importance, real business value and impact. Projects can happen anywhere - across Australia and globally. Once confirmed, we build a consultancy team of four to five high-performing business students to deliver the project.
Students are provided with intensive and rigorous consulting training prior to commencement, ensuring they have the necessary skills to develop a well-researched solution. In conjunction with the training, they are assigned an academic lead who has extensive experience in successfully guiding students to deliver results.
The project time frame will depend on the program which runs intensively over two weeks, or spread across eleven weeks. With projects spanning either time frame, the student team then undertake analysis and investigation to address your business idea or challenge. This will involve contact hours within your organisation and consulting with key stakeholders. At the end of the project, the team will present their findings and recommendations to key stakeholders. The team will produce a report and you can choose to implement their recommendations.
This sounds great. What's next?
Contact one of our expert team members to begin the process of scoping your organisation’s project and discuss the next steps to bring your project to life.
You can also learn more and take a look at the next intake timelines on the Business Practicum, Management Consulting, and Applied Syndicate subject pages. Please also feel free to review the project proposal form and begin the process of formulating your project idea.
Frequently Asked Questions
What type of projects are acceptable and how do I choose the right project?
Projects should feasibly be completed within a two- or ten-week period depending on the program you undertake. Examples of project topics are:
- How can we gain greater procurement efficiency?
- Analyse perverse tax incentives for sustainable behaviour
- Feasibility assessment: creation of a new maintenance division
- Strategies for becoming an employer of choice
- How to develop an innovation culture in the workplace
- Creating a financial model for headcount, productivity and long-term competitiveness
- Examine implications of social media for enabling customer social investment
- Insight into customers’ use of search and social media
- Reviewing international financial processing
- Assessing the viability of entering a new market with an existing product
- Conducting a feasibility analysis on business expansion
- In-sourcing versus out-sourcing
- Developing plans for attracting specific customer groups
- Development of a financial database management program
- Identification of a geographic growth plan
Who are the students?
High-achieving early career Bachelor of Commerce and specialist Masters students studying in the business fields of Economics, Entrepreneurship, Finance, Human Resources, International Business, Management and Marketing.
They have well-developed problem solving, teamwork, IT and communication skills, with many speaking more than one language and all have a high degree of nous.
Who will own the intellectual property?
The intellectual property remains with the host company with permission for the student to use the work as part of their studies and assessment.
I run my own small business; can I take part?
There are opportunities for all sizes of companies to engage with our students. Please contact us and we can discuss further.
What if the consulting team is not performing?
Students are supervised remotely by an Academic staff member. If you feel there is a problem, you can be assured of our support to mediate the issue quickly.
Why is this free and what’s the catch?
There is no catch, you are providing a learning opportunity for students to work on real world challenges for your organisation. Students are receiving credit towards their degree for the completion of your consulting project. Students are not completing day to day work for you (work that would normally be handled by an employee). They are conducting analysis, review and research in order to develop detailed recommendations and solutions, which you as an organisation may wish to operationalise at a later date.
My organisation is from Melbourne but based interstate/outside Australia. How will this work?
If in Australia (but outside Melbourne), in July 2023 we will be running the Business Practicum in Sydney (2-week intensive), please contact us to learn more.
For other locations outside of Melbourne please contact us to discuss further as there may be hybrid or online opportunities available
If outside of Australia we do support projects via our Global Business Practicum and our Global Management Consulting subjects. Please contact us to learn when our students will next be in your region. Students, similar to our local/Australia-based program travel and take part in consulting projects for an intensive 2-week period.
Can the project team implement their recommendations?
The project team are there to develop the strategy, conduct relevant analysis, benchmark or make recommendations in relation to your challenge. Many organisations then operationalise the strategy, either using their internal team or by hiring interns.
Can I hire students that completed the consulting project?
Yes. This becomes an employment agreement between you and the student. There is no charge from the University.
My organisation requires all staff, volunteers, consultants and students to complete police checks/working with children checks (WWCC) etc.
This isn't an issue. Please provide us with advanced notice so we can organise for students to complete these. Please let us know should you require these checks as soon as possible. Police checks generally require 2.5 weeks and WWCC generally require 4 weeks' notice.
Business Innovation Lab
It was an incredible opportunity to gain a bunch of insights from a range of students from diverse backgrounds. The whole experience was not only an eye opener, it was a great learning opportunity! Jodie Tuckwell- Knight, Ready Set
Launched in 2020, the Business Innovation Lab is an innovative program that supports our partner organisations create innovative solutions for their real-world problems. This is achieved through the expert facilitation of tailored Design Thinking workshops in partnership with White Light Education, with multi-disciplinary teams of our students developing solutions for you.
To date, we have had over 70 unique organisations partner with us, and more than 850 students take part with highly acclaimed outcomes.
How do I benefit?
- Build meaningful insights and solutions through Design Thinking methodology
- Engage with the next generation of business and sector leaders and build your talent pipeline
- Increase your brand awareness across our student community
- Access networking opportunities through associated events
- No financial cost to participate.
How does it work?
Firstly, we will identify a suitable business problem or conceptual challenge and confirm your participation. From there, our Design Thinking consultant will work with you to scope, define and refine your business problem.
The Design Thinking consultant will be available to answer any questions prior to the program and industry representatives will receive a briefing on the morning prior to the Business Innovation Lab. Through the program, you will have two groups of five students working with you on your business challenge. The program will culminate with the student teams pitching their solutions to you, and you may explore these solutions further.
Upcoming dates in 2023
- April 13: 1-day program, delivered in-person (2-hour online induction - April 6)
- September 27: 1-day program, delivered in-person (2-hour online induction - Sept 20)
This sounds great. What's next?
Have a business or conceptual problem you’d like our students to investigate?
Reach out to express your interest and preferred program period with our Partnerships team.
Please note that places are limited.
The facilitators created an environment that allowed the student teams to thrive and think outside the box in regards to what was delivered from the business problem statements. There was such a wealth of engagement and originality delivered from the students during this Business Innovation Lab that I just know all the businesses involved were running back to their CEO and board with these incredible solutions. Chardee McEwan, Wise Employment
Frequently Asked Questions
Who are the students?
- High-achieving early-career business, arts, science, and engineering students, from a range of courses.
- They have well-developed problem-solving, teamwork, IT, and communication skills, with many speaking more than one language and all have a high degree of nous.
What do I need to provide?
1. Two representatives from your organisation
- A main contact for the project scope discussions.
- Two representatives to be actively present and involved during the program.
2. Sufficient background context of your organisation and project scope for our students to work on throughout the program
Which organisations have participated in the past?
Industry partners have included:
- Red Cross Australia
- Victoria Walks
- The Australian Chamber Orchestra
- The Baker Heart and Diabetes Institue
- Villa Alba
- JT Management Productions
- Yarra Riverkeeper Association
- Melbourne International Film Festival
- City of Melbourne
- Coles & REDcycle
Where is this based and can I do this remotely?
In 2023 we will be conducting the program in person based on our Parkville campus. This will be subject to meeting any government restrictions and guidelines at the point of the program. We look forward to welcoming our industry partners back on campus.
What is the cost?
There is no charge for taking part in these workshops. Your participation will provide valuable experience for our students and we simply need a small portion of your time. We anticipate in turn that value is provided to your organisation through the results. Furthermore, this is a great way to engage with the community and some of Australia’s brightest students, who have both diverse skills and fresh ideas – this could be a pathway to securing graduate talent!
How are students rewarded?
As this is a co-curricular activity, our students can receive non-academic recognition for taking part. In addition, they develop relevant employability skills by taking part, such as professional communication, teamwork, development and so on.
We also welcome corporate sponsorships for the most innovative student teams to encourage friendly competition within the cohort. This skill-based reward approach makes it fair for all students involved. These prizes can be either financial or in-kind.
If you’d like to offer any professional development experiences post-program to student teams, please let us know.
Engage with students, inspire fellow alumni or recognise an outstanding contribution to our community - there are many ways to be involved.