Business Standard

BS Best B-School Project Award: Innovation key to top honours

IIFT, Delhi student wins first prize for mobile app for merchandising team at Colgate Palmolive

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Rediff.com Founder & CMD Ajit Balakrishnan, Deloitte Support Services Director Sandeep Chandola, Crompton Greaves EVP & Global HR Head Sanjay Singh, Reserve Bank of India Deputy Governor Urjit R Patel, RGF Executive Search MD R Suresh, IIT-Kharagpur'
Rediff.com Founder & CMD Ajit Balakrishnan, Deloitte Support Services Director Sandeep Chandola, Crompton Greaves EVP & Global HR Head Sanjay Singh, Reserve Bank of India Deputy Governor Urjit R Patel, RGF Executive Search MD R Suresh, IIT-Kharagpur’
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Technology and innovation-led projects were the winners at the Business Standard Best B-School Project Award, 2014.

Anit Pandey, a second-year student at Indian Institute of Foreign Trade (IIFT), Delhi, who designed a mobile application for the entire merchandising team of Colgate-Palmolive (in its east and west zones) bagged the top honour. "While many large fast moving consumer goods companies have systems in place, there is a lack of data-tracking mechanism and proper execution. Through my project I wished to state this will be possible with a technological framework," he said.

Reserve Bank of India Deputy Governor Urjit Patel presented the awards as the chief guest of the event. The winners were decided by a six-member jury, led by Ajit Balakrishnan, founder and CMD of Rediff.com. The other members of the jury were Sandeep Chandola, director, strategy, brand & innovation, Deloitte Support Services India; Sanjay Singh, EVP & global HR head, Crompton Greaves Ltd; M G Parameswaran, ED, FCB Ulka Advertising; and R Suresh, MD, RGF Executive Search.

"The quality of these projects shows that these students have not only been able to absorb the business problems, but also been able to give solutions and recommendations to address them," said Balakrishnan.

Pandey said since most individuals in the merchandising team were in the age group of 21-45 years, it was easier to give them an application to track their activities. Having worked on the iOS platform on an earlier assignment, Pandey was able to learn the coding for the Android platform for this project as most merchandising team members were already using low-end Android smartphones.

The mobile application helped the company track when the merchandising team members visited a store, how long they spent in the store and helped them look into the stock gap and visibility gap in the store through pictures clicked by them in the store via the app. Later, GPS tracking devices were added and a tagged Picasa album was created for uploading these pictures for audit compliance.

Vinay Goyal, a second-year management student at XLRI-Jamshedpur, received the second prize with his idea on mapping the patient flow diagram for coronary artery diseases and identifying the key factors leading to leakages in patient flow. Goyal did this project for Boston Scientific in Jodhpur, Rajasthan.

Goyal recommended a reliable, comprehensive screening, smart card implementation and on-line tracking of patients for this project. He concluded that of the 17,000 patient leakages, through these efforts and by improving the continuum of care, about 3,000 patients could be brought to the continuum of care.

TOP THREE PROJECTS
Winner
ANIT PANDEY, IIFT-Delhi
Project: In-store execution effectiveness on the ground, Colgate-Palmolive
Pandey designed a mobile application for the entire merchandising team of Colgate-Palmolive for data tracking mechanisms and proper execution. With most individuals in the merchandising team in the age group of 21-45 years, it was easier to give them an application to track their activities. The mobile application helped the company track when the merchandising team members visited a store, how long they spent in the store and helped them look into the stock gap and visibility gap in the store through pictures clicked by them in the store via the app. Later, GPS tracking devices were added and a tagged Picasa album created for uploading these pictures for audit compliance.
1st runner-up
VINAY GOYAL, XLRI-Jamshedpur
Project: Market development of programme for coronary artery diseases patients, Boston Scientific Summer Internship Project, Jodhpur, Rajasthan
Goyal mapped the patient flow for coronary artery diseases at Boston Scientific, Jodhpur, Rajasthan, and identified the key factors leading to leakages in patient flow. Goyal discovered there was a lack of motivation by influencers which reflected in the weak referral system. Also, lack of patient tracking resulted in loss in patient flow. He recommended a reliable and comprehensive screening, implementation of smart card and on-line tracking of patients for the project, concluding that of the 17,000 patient leakages, 3000 patients can be brought to the continuum of care.
2nd runner-up
HARSHAVARDHAN N, Vinod Gupta School of Management, IIT-Kharagpur
Project: Optimisation of throughput time in assembly of trucks, the Tata way
Harshavardhan worked on optimisation of throughput time for assembly of trucks for Tata Motors in Pimpri, Pune. The project resulted in the average float of the vehicle, and the number of vehicles in the system drastically decreasing by around 10 per cent. The number of workers was reduced by 10, saving Rs 4,00,000 on wages and improved the Direct Run Rate by 20 per cent, therefore, increasing it to 80per cent. The project relied on human interactions and data analysis to reach conclusions.

The third position was bagged by Harshavardhan N, a management student at Vinod Gupta School of Management, IIT Kharagpur. He worked on optimisation of throughput time for assembly of trucks for Tata Motors in Pimpri, Pune. His aim was to reduce the throughput time by at least five per cent, and he was able to reduce it by 38.5 minutes.

The presentations were judged on the basis of the problem statement, quality of data, analysis, solution and communication.

This is the seventh edition of the awards. About 158 applications were received, from which five were selected for the final round. Consolation prizes was awarded to Kavita Maru, a student of N L Dalmia Institute of Management Studies and Research, Mumbai, whose project involved development of a scorecard for retail advances in a public sector bank so that their education loans and vehicle loans do not turn into non-performing assets.

Gadha Raj N and Sumodh Namboothiri of Institute of Rural Management, Anand, won consolation prize for developing a business plan and marketing plan for Nagai Milk Producers Company, Nagapattinam.

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