Education Policy | Post Primary | Preschool | Primary | Tertiary | Search

 

Auckland students win trans-Tasman IT Challenge

Helping SMEs gain deeper customer insights while preserving limited time and resources is the focus of an app developed by four University of Auckland (UoA) students, which took the top spot in the trans-Tasman MYOB IT Challenge for 2021.

Team members Nicholas Kondal, Laith Saeed, Sonia Wang and Emily Zou – all studying conjoint engineering degrees, and from Auckland – developed Rev-you, a functional prototype app for the MYOB marketplace designed to help SMEs automatically collect and analyse customer feedback using data analytics and artificial intelligence. The technology then converts the responses received into highly detailed information about the different customer groups.

Member of the winning team, Nicholas Kondal, explains they developed Rev-you as a way for SMEs to gain better insight into their customers, looking beyond what’s visible in the basic sales data from their invoices.

“We felt that the past eighteen months have made it more difficult for small business owners to form meaningful connections with their customers, and we saw tremendous value in streamlining the process of exchanging feedback and correlating that with each customer’s orders,” says Nicholas.

“One of the great things about our solution is its integration with the MYOB Essentials API. By tapping into the information available from each customer’s invoice, feedback forms can be automatically emailed out a certain number of days after a transaction, with the questions tailored to the customer’s orders.”

The MYOB IT Challenge, which has now been running for seven years, is designed to develop, support and foster the skills of up-and-coming tech talent. The Challenge sees students combine business and digital technology skills, as they tackle real-world business issues using tech-led solutions.

Teams of two-to-four students develop functional technology prototypes and present their ideas to a panel of judges. Forming part of their presentations, students are also tasked with considering everything from financial and marketing planning, to market launch strategies.

MYOB Chief Technology Officer – and a judge of this year’s competition – Darren Smith, says he was blown away by the quality of the submissions and presentations by the 2021 finalists.

“Every single team presented pitches with confidence and clarity, and this was all backed by high-quality presentation material, often going beyond what I’ve seen from people with significantly more commercial experience,” explains Darren.

“In our judging sessions, it was clear that all teams had put their analytical and communication skills from their tertiary courses to good use. We were particularly impressed that the students across all teams focused on the customer and the end goal – and that was a big part of what stood out for us in the winning pitch.”

As winners of the MYOB IT Challenge, the Rev-you team came away with a top prize of $4,000 from the overall $8,500 prize pool, as well as valuable development experience and some learnings for the future.

“Winning the competition serves as proof of our business acumen, technical skills and presentation ability,” says Nicholas. “Having a panel of industry leaders judge and recognise our idea, implementation, and presentation, is a great confidence boost and a source of motivation for us.

“Each team member has taken something away from this experience, and the analytical mindset of always considering the end-user is bound to help us in any problem-solving scenario in the future, no matter where we end up.”

With the winning students approaching university graduation – Laith, Sonia and Emily in 2021, and Nicholas in 2022 – the Challenge has increased their confidence in the skills they developed, and for some of the team, may boost opportunities to land a tech-related role after graduation.

“We are keen to continue developing the skills we gained from the competition and some of us might even throw ourselves into the deep end and apply for some internships or graduate roles in the related areas. The MYOB IT Challenge will definitely play a big role in helping to shape our future career aspirations.”

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
Culture Headlines | Health Headlines | Education Headlines

 


Howard Davis: Emerald Fennell's Promising Young Woman'


The Guardian needed not one, but three reviews to do justice to Fennell's unsettling approach, which indicates exactly how ambiguous and controversial its message really is. More>>


Howard Davis: Jill Trevelyan's Rita Angus

Although Angus has become one of Aotearoa’s best-loved painters, the story of her life remained little known and poorly understood before Jill Trevelyan's acclaimed and revelatory biography, which won the Non Fiction Award at the Montana New Zealand Book Awards in 2009, and has now been republished by Te Papa press. More>>

Howard Davis: The Back of the Painting

Painting conservators are the forensic pathologists of the art world. While they cannot bring their subjects back to life, they do provide fascinating insights into the precise circumstances of a painting's creation, its material authenticity, and constructive methodology. More>>


Howard Davis: Black Panthers on the Prowl

A passionate and gripping political drama from Shaka King, this is an informative and instructive tale of human frailty that centers around the charismatic Chicago Black Panther leader Fred Hampton, who was murdered at the age of twenty-one during a police raid. More>>

Howard Davis: Controlling the High Ground

Stephen Johnson's raw and angry film not only poses important questions with scrupulous authenticity, but also provides a timely reminder of the genocidal consequences of casual bigotry and xenophobia. More>>

Howard Davis: Dryzabone - Robert Conolly's The Dry

After the terrible devastation caused by last year’s bushfires, which prompted hundreds of Australians to shelter in the ocean to escape incineration and destroyed uncountable amounts of wildlife, The Dry has been released during a totally different kind of dry spell. More>>


Howard Davis: Hit the Road, Jack - Chloé Zhao's Nomadland

Nomadland is perhaps the ultimately 'road' movie as it follows a group of dispossessed and disenfranchised vagabonds who find a form of communal refuge in camp sites and trailer parks after the economic contraction of 2008. More>>

 
 
 
 
 
 

LATEST HEADLINES

  • CULTURE
  • HEALTH
  • EDUCATION
 
 
  • Wellington
  • Christchurch
  • Auckland