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Student consultancy projects launched to support local businesses

Business and management students at Leeds Beckett University are offering their expertise to Yorkshire businesses of all sizes through a series of free short-term consultancy projects starting this autumn.

The scheme – which has been running for more than 15 years – sees small groups of final year undergraduate and MBA students at Leeds Business School partner with industry clients to deliver between 70 and 100 consultancy projects per year as part of their assessments.

Clare Manning, Senior Lecturer at Leeds Business School, explained: “This is a perfect opportunity for any business – from micro SMEs to large national companies – to develop a project or examine a discrete piece of work that they haven’t the time or resources to look at. A wide range of disciplines are covered – from marketing to international business and human resource management – the list goes on.

“The projects are vital to our students as they help them understand a real business, some of the problems they may face, and how to look to solve these problems by applying the theories they have learnt into practice. Working with local businesses also builds lasting relationships and is an excellent opportunity for all involved to look at the business in an innovative and strategic manner.”

The projects will run between October 2020 and April 2021. With each project, the students will work with the business to agree the scope of the work, conduct independent research, and present practical recommendations to the business.

Clare added: “Over the past 15 years, our students have worked with a wide range of businesses, including Marks & Spencer, ASDA, Morrisons, Disney, IBM, IKEA and Lush, as well as local charities – such as St George’s Crypt – restaurants, bars and personal trainers.

“Each business has a different need and gets access to talent and resources; while our students get real life project experience.”