The MSc Management consulting project elective in the summer term gives students the opportunity to apply all of the skills achieved on the programme to a live client project.
Working in teams, students were assigned to work on a project for a company. For three weeks, students analyse the problem, integrating theoretical knowledge with practical skills relevant to industry.
They work closely with the company to ensure they understand the project scenario and ultimately deliver value to the client. Some of this year’s companies were Accenture, Automobile Lamborghini, EY, Capco, Deloitte, Johnson & Johnson and Mercato Metropolitano to name a few.
They worked on projects in areas including AI, blockchain, customer experience, client retention and replicating business models.
At the end of the consulting project, the teams presented their findings to a panel of judges made up of academics and the corporate representatives from their companies. They then write a final report that could be used by practising managers at the companies.
We speak to students and company leads from the Automobili Lamborghini and Capco consulting projects to find out about their experience.
The team working on the Automobili Lamborghini was Marisa Chayavivatkul, Manchal Kumar, Saad Malik, Bowen Pan, Michael Reingruber and Calum Smith. They were guided by Matteo Cangelosi, Project Manager of Simultaneous Engineering Teams and MSc Management 2014-15 alumnus.
Student experience: Marisa Chayavivatkul
What was it like to work with Lamborghini? How was your experience visiting the Lamborghini HQ in Italy?
Working with Lamborghini was surreal. We felt really honoured to get the consulting case with Lamborghini after submitting our pitch for the project. Visiting the Lamborghini offices in Italy may have been the highlight of my time at Imperial. We felt really lucky to have been given this opportunity. We got to visit their manufacturing facilities as well as talk and present to some notable people. We were even able to squeeze in some good food and a quick trip to Milan with the team.
How did it feel to be presenting your project to a panel of industry experts? How did you prepare for the presentation?
Initially, I was very nervous. Before we presented to the project management team in Bologna, Italy, we all stayed in our Airbnb practicing the entire day, even practicing our lines on the cab ride to the HQ. However, once there, our practice and late night sessions paid off and we were able to come together and deliver a good presentation. This helped us not feel nervous the second time when we presented at Imperial. I think the best thing to do to prepare for a presentation like this is to not memorise the presentation. We all knew the information very well so that helped us a lot.
Do you feel like you’ve made a real impact with the project?
Coming into it, I didn’t know how much value we would be able to deliver, but after we presented to the project team at the Lamborghini HQ in Bologna, Italy, we all felt as though we made a real impact on the project. The feedback we received from the project management team, especially the Head of Project Management Department, Massimo Fumarola, was something we did not expect. We were told that they’d like to adopt one of our recommendations and see it come to fruition. Massimo as well as Matteo, the Project Management Coordinator, said we had done an excellent job.
Students at the Lamborghini HQ in Italy
Client experience: Matteo Cangelosi, Project Manager of Simultaneous Engineering Teams
How was the team’s presentation at the Lamborghini HQ?
The students visited the Lamborghini HQ the week before the presentation. They presented to the department Director, who is part of the board of Lamborghini, and the whole project management department. They presented for 40 minutes about their project and then we had a one hour discussion where we exchanged ideas. We were really happy with their ideas and presentation. The team were the strongest we have had in the three years of doing the consulting project with Imperial.
Did you enjoy working with Imperial students on this consulting project?
Throughout the project, we had weekly calls to update and review their project. That was really enjoyable because we could see the project was slowly taking place and getting its structure. They were really listening to what I told them. Every week, they sent me their reports which updated me on the project. We would review and discuss it together. They explained to me how they researched things and came up with results. I was trying to guide them in the direction that the company actually wanted to go in so we can actually work on it.
Also, they are young students coming from London, which is a city that has continuous movement and innovation. We’re from a small town in the middle of the countryside in Italy, so there is not as big a culture of innovation. It’s always good to have an insight for projects on innovation and new technologies with students from Imperial.
Do you see long-term implementation of the work that has been done on the project?
We have a new boss this year and he’s really keen on product changes and innovation. He said some of the project ideas were really good. After we receive their final report, we will share their findings and some of their ideas may be developed and implemented with the new branding department. It was a good base to start with because it was a project on the sharing economy, which is something that we were unaware of and it has given us good background knowledge to use in the future.
The team working on the Capco project was made up of Jacqueline Burks, Aidan Curran, Georgie Davies, Michael Miceli, Alexander Reed and Taylor Yu. Their project lead was Alex Lawson, Associate Consultant at Capco and MSc Management 2014-15 alumnus
Student experience: Alex Reed
How did you benefit from working with Capco on the consulting project?
Working with Capco allowed us to understand more about innovative technologies in the context of London’s financial services industry. We were able to identify, analyse, and solve problems, providing solutions surrounding disruption from industry-transforming revolutions. Being based in London meant that we were able to interact with some of the biggest brand-name companies when carrying out extensive face-to-face research. The project had a very niche focus which really allowed us to drill-down our analysis.
How did you apply learnings from your MSc Management to the project?
Having developed business acumen throughout the Master’s, seeing improvement in our presentation skills and having experience of case studies in the classroom, it was possible to apply learned theory to the real-life situation of our client with complete confidence. Having a holistic understanding of practical knowledge and being able to integrate these abilities to the client situation really allowed us to see our studies pay dividends in the form of successful client interaction and project execution.
What was the most enjoyable part of the project?
The teamwork aspect of the project has proven to make the consulting experience incredibly enjoyable. In fact, being able to see an improvement in each and every member of the team, in comparison to the beginning of the academic year, is really quite something and it makes you realise the huge steps that we’ve made over the past year due to the growth opportunities that we’ve been faced with.
Client experience: Alex Lawson, Associate Consultant, Capco
How did you find working with Imperial students on this consulting project?
It’s excellent to get a fresh perspective from a group of genuinely very intelligent and enthusiastic students who have training from a world-leading institution. It’s a wonderful position to be in to have the sustained attention, enthusiasm and engagement of these individuals and I’ve been very impressed with them. I’ve found it incredibly interesting to watch how their approach has changed as they got stuck into it and watching how they adapted to different challenges the project threw their way.
The consulting project was far and beyond the most incredible part of my MSc Management programme. I remember really relishing the amount of free reign they gave us to really use the skills we had learnt up to that point. It was a real highlight and I was excited about getting stuck in with this project.
How have you benefited from working with Imperial students?
From my perspective, something which I wouldn’t understate is how useful it is to be the client for a change. I work as a consultant and it’s a really helpful lens to have. It certainly gave me the occasion to pause for a bit of introspection of how I deal and engage with my clients. That was something I wasn’t expecting which was very useful and interesting.
Do you see long-term implementation of the work that has been done on the project?
The question that I posed to them has some very specific strategic impact for the direction of Capco. I was very impressed by how considerate and well-structured some of their observations were. I hope I can provide them with a wider platform at Capco at the end of the project so they have the opportunity to disseminate their findings more widely for the benefit of the company. From what I have seen, the project should be taken very seriously.