Businesswise June 2009


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Businesswise June 2009

  1. 1. The Dollhouse Annual Fashion Auction proved to be a huge success for Northampton Business School’s second year Fashion Marketing students. Held in March at Ghost Nightclub, the spectacle showcased a catwalk style show of one-off garments, along with the opportunity for the audience to bid on the handmade designs. Over the past few months, the second year Fashion Marketing students have been working hard on putting together their Annual Fashion Auction, and the hard work certainly paid off. Around 300 people attended the event, watching in awe at the gothic-themed models on the alternative styled catwalk.After the show the bidding began, with hundreds of garments walking out the door at bargain prices.To conclude the night, local music artist, Elena Josepha performed her hit single ‘Girl on Girl’, whilst the crowd danced the night away. In regards to the massive effort put in by the Fashion Marketing cohort, fashion lecturer,Vicki Dean, from the University of Northampton was quoted telling the students,‘You managed to successfully implement a fantastic show which demonstrated clear attention to detail, both aesthetically, conceptually and theoretically. As a course you sit at the interface between two schools The Business School and The School of The Arts, last night you showed just how successful good team work and partnership can be.We’re very proud of you all’. Independent fashion designer, Emmeline Child, also commented on the success of the night, saying that ‘The event as a whole ran very well, and the fashion team were well and truly blown away! You really have raised the bar for next years students!’ The success of the event was also made possible with the help from Ghost Nightclub,The Body Shop, Impressions Hair and Namal Lanka Photography. Not only was the University of Northampton’s Annual Fashion Auction a platform for both fashion design and marketing students alike to exhibit their multitude of talents, all the proceeds raised from the University of Northampton’s Annual Fashion Auction will go towards assisting this year’s graduate design students display at London’s prestigious Graduate Fashion Week. Huge Success for the Dollhouse, the University of Northampton’s Annual Fashion Auction N O R T H A M P TO N B U S I N E S S S C H O O L BUSINESS WISEJ U N E 2 0 0 9 E D I T I O N
  2. 2. NBS is an established Accredited Study Centre for CIM qualifications, having prepared its students for success for over 20 years. The latest revision to CIM’s qualifications syllabus sees NBS well-placed to deliver the new versions – and to extend its suite of CIM awards to include the Professional Certificate in Marketing, to add to its existing offers of the Professional Diploma and the Chartered Postgraduate Diploma. This is an exiting time for the Institute, which seeks to place marketing at the heart of business. NBS is exited to support the profession and its leading body, the CIM, in this aspiration. Main advantages of the new qualifications at a glance: • Relevant marketing knowledge for business today – each qualification contains content developed from feedback from employers who have stated what skills and competencies they expect marketers to have. The qualifications are also mapped to the Government’s National Occupational Standards for Marketing. • Qualifications facilitate career progression for aspiring marketers – clear route to Chartered Marketer status with recognition for achievement along the way. • Improved learning experience – the practical nature of the qualifications with direct relevance to business means that learning can be applied immediately.The new assessment methods encourage this. • Greater contribution to the business process – the content of each qualification now clarifies the role of marketing in business and covers the different stakeholder groups in detail. Demonstrating this knowledge will give marketers greater credibility in the organisation. • Improves knowledge of marketing regardless of industry – the syllabus is relevant for people working in a not-for-profit organisation or the public sector as well as those working in business to business or consumer marketing. • Staying up to date with the latest marketing techniques and issues – the qualifications include content around changes in use of technology, social marketing, legal aspects of marketing and stakeholder marketing. Northampton Business School launches new Chartered Institute of Marketing qualifications Students on the tourism consultancy module were this year set the task of working with external clients to produce a report on accessibility within particular sectors of the tourism sector in Northamptonshire. Students formed their own consultancy groups and worked with partners from Silverstone Circuit, Sundial Venues Events Group, Northampton Heritage Trust, and Northamptonshire Enterprise Ltd. The nature of the consultancy project allowed students to investigate the national, regional, and local context of improving accessibility for disabled visitors across the Business, Sports, and Heritage tourism sectors. Following their successful research and consultancy reports, all of which were of a high standard, they were then tasked with presenting the findings of their reports back to our industry partners. Our partners in industry commented on the professionalism of our students and complimented them all on their hard work; it was a great credit to them that many of the recommendations given by our students will be carried forward; “The recommendations made by your students can be addressed directly at our next board meeting and finances permitting many of them can be carried forward with immediate effect to further ensure we are meeting all of our clients needs, now and in the future” Tim Chudley, Managing Director; Sundial Venues Events Group Final Year Tourism students Tourism Consultancy Project For more information, please contact RogerWilletts (Course Leader) on 01604 892036 or email: N O R T H A M P TO N B U S I N E S S S C H O O L BUSINESS WISEJ U N E 2 0 0 9 E D I T I O N
  3. 3. Regal Links Althorp House collaboration N BS was delighted to receive Anna Semler from the Althorp House retail and website shop, along with Samantha Squire (a placement student at Althorp) earlier this year when they delivered a project brief to our E-Retailing group. The project brief required students to evaluate the feasibility of developing an expanded internet shopping capability for Althorp House, a stately home that is engaged in a range of activities from events to hospitality.Their current website “shop” offers a limited range of specialised/exclusive merchandise. Assignments achieving the highest grade markings will be considered by Althorp House in conjunction with existing business plans for the expansion of their website. Dave Larkan (Course Leader) commented that ‘This is a very exciting opportunity for students to engage in ‘live’ projects which could positively impact the work of a prestigious local estate. Quality of work is expected to be extremely high.’ MBA Dinner 2009 NBS was delighted to welcome Milan Shah as guest speaker to its second MBA dinner on the 9th May 2009. A member of The University of Northampton’s Governing body and spice trader by profession, Milan Shah engages in international policy and representation work via the EU lobby for agri-produce traders, CELCAA, and recently retired as President of the global trade body for general produce traders, the IGPA.Within Northamptonshire, Milan is a Board member of both Northamptonshire Chamber and Northamptonshire Enterprises, where he chairs its Enterprise Committee. He is a Fellow of the Institute of Directors and holds a Chartered Director qualification, with a focus on corporate governance. He is also a Member of the Chartered Institute of Arbitrators, specialising in international commodity trading disputes. Attending MBA student Phuong Nguyen (shown above with Dr. Ian Brooks, Dean) commented:“The event was a great opportunity for staff and students to network and discuss the MBA programme over the past year. Milan Shah delivered an interesting talk, full of practical business knowledge and experience and it was an invaluable opportunity to exchange ideas and progress new developments for the future.” HRM Student Achievements Every year the CIPD Northamptonshire Branch recognises the achievements of CIPD students through a series of awards at their AGM. This year, two students will receive awards in recognition of their performance on the DPD programme in NBS. Sharon Henry, who works as an HR manager at Milton Keynes Council will receive an award for the best management report. Nicola Robertson, from GB Mahle will receive an award for consistent and outstanding achievement on the DPD programme. Congratulations to both students.
  4. 4. In Northampton Business School (NBS) Information Sciences (ISc) are delivering a first class provision and producing students highly skilled to make a distinct impact in business IT. NBS is actively involved with the Government’s e-skills programme BigAmbition:“an initiative designed to address the falling numbers of students taking IT-related degrees.” FIRST CLASS ISc PROVISION • FIRST to deliver Service Management Masters Degree in the world • FIRST to offer full Distance Learning Option for MSc ITSM • FIRST to embed Service Management into undergraduate programme • FIRST to actively recruit and give accreditation for professional qualifications in ITIL • First to embed SFIA into all provisions • First academic partner of SFIA “The IT professional workforce in the UK has almost doubled in the last 12 years: from 550,000 to around one million today, and will continue to grow strongly over the coming decade.At the same time, every year fewer young people choose to undertake an IT-related Degree, with a drop of around half (46 percent) since 2001.There is a mismatch here that urgently needs to be addressed.” (Karen Price, Chief Executive officer for E-Skills UK, 2006) FIRST IT SERVICE MANAGEMENT MSc IN THE WORLD The launch of our pioneering MSc IT Service Management impressed the IT Service Management Forum (itSMF) so much that they awarded the University their Innovation Award in 2008 for the FIRST MSc IT Service Management Degree in the world. Currently PG students come from a wide range of organisations and industries including BT, BBC, European Central Bank, National Audit Office, Ministry of Defence , Prudential, Universities , Roche, Serco, Ministry of Justice, NHS ,National Police Forces and Councils,. Whilst some of our graduates have secured IS jobs at Hewlett Packard, IBM, Nationwide, Marval and Microsoft. Ullas Jagadish was our First International Student to be offered a job at IBM in India and is now Service Delivery Manager for IBM Global Infrastructure.These students are reaping the appropriate professional rewards. FIRST ACADEMIC ACCREDITOR OF ITIL QUALIFICATIONS The ISc team have an articulation agreement with ISM and were the first to actively recruit and give accreditation for professional qualifications in ITIL enabling students with no first degree to step onto the Postgraduate programme.The Institute of IT Service Management now offers our students free membership.Acknowledgment of Prince2 and other ISEB and related professional qualifications can form part of our APEL programme. Our aim is to offer flexibility and continual personal development.We offer the first completely Distance Learning MSc ITSM and, using the awarding winning innovations from our MSc we are the first to embed service management into our undergraduate programme. Our Field Chair, is the first and (currently) only academic member of the itSMF Qualification and Certification Executive Committee and the Special Interest Group in Education. ULLAS JAGADISH comments “The MSc in IT Service Management course has been the perfect gateway for me to enter a challenging and respectable position in a world class organisation like IBM. This was possible in spite of the current global climate.The sheer knowledge in Service Management gave me the edge over other candidates who were more experienced than me.All the modules covered in the course added value to me.The BCS events organised by Susan Bailey were very informative and any postgraduate student would welcome such initiatives.The IS department has played a supporting role ensuring the availability of appropriate literature as well as 24x7 facilities.The University as a whole has been great experience. I was also a part of Community Volunteering team engaging in various activities that helped me to understand the community better and an opportunity to serve them. My memorable experience was the Tea invitation by the Hon. Mayor of Northampton at The Guild Hall.” FIRST CLASS COMPUTING AT NBS N O R T H A M P TO N B U S I N E S S S C H O O L BUSINESS WISEJ U N E 2 0 0 9 E D I T I O N
  5. 5. FIRST UNIVERSITY PARTNER FOR SFIA The ISc team in NBS launched the 3 year undergraduate BSc in Business Computing Systems “To create industry ready, well– equipped business computing graduates for the 21st century” and to address the “significant year-on-year decline in young people choosing IT-related degrees”. In an innovative move ISc were the first to embed SFIA skills into all undergraduate and postgraduate provisions. “The Skills Framework for the Information Age (SFIA) provides a common reference model for the identification of the skills needed by industry to develop effective Information Systems (IS) making use of Information Communications Technology (ICT)” (SFIA).As a direct result of the ISc teams comprehensive mapping of skills against UG and PG degrees, The University of Northampton Business School is the first university to be accepted as SFIA accredited partner and to be invited to sit on the council with prestigious members from organisations such as IBM and The Cabinet Office. THE BRITISH COMPUTER SOCIETY (BCS) The Northampton branch of the BCS has played a significant role in awarding prizes, as well as kudos, to our “best” and “most promising” students.The membership of the branch has grown steadily since 2004 and now has over 820 members, from Northampton, Milton Keynes and the surrounding areas.The branch holds several events each year, many of which are hosted by The University.These serve the twin purposes of being informative and interesting as well as forming good networking opportunities for the profession. Events have included: computer forensics; security vulnerabilities; project management; virtual enterprises; the skills gap and techno- addiction. Our students are encouraged to join the BCS at an early stage in order to develop a professional ethos and provide aspirations for their future careers. Field Chair, Susan Bailey has recently become the first female Fellow of the British Computing Society at the University. A TASTE OF THE HIGHER LIFE ISc offers exciting opportunities to take advantage of this first class provision.To develop your computing skills without committing yourself to a whole programme why not become an Associate Student. Innovative delivery using pod casts, web logs, wikis, online assessments and guest lectures from industry practitioners and a dedicated team provides hands on experience with a broad base of IT tools, such as; Open source and commercial industry standard software and methodologies such as Oracle, PHP, PRINCE 2.All modules are mapped to Skills For Information Age [SFIA] and aligned to professional qualifications where appropriate. The ISc team are highly qualified, skilled, research active staff, with commercial and academic experience and members of professional bodies; HEA, BCS and ITIL. A range of modules and business skills including;‘Web Development’,‘Systems Analysis’ and ‘Quality Systems’,‘Database Architecture’ and ‘Database Application’, or ‘Project Management’ and ‘Service Management’ are offered. If you are interested in business computing systems and want to widen your computing knowledge, update or recognise your existing skills you could be one of the professionals with the computing expertise needed to address the serious shortfall and support the UK’s knowledge economy. Associate Students can study up to two undergraduate modules without committing to a whole programme. Enjoy all the benefits of being a member of the University, studying alongside other full and part-time students, attending lectures, seminars and practical labs and gain credit for study by undertaking assessments. Formal qualifications are not necessary for many undergraduate modules, just enthusiasm and realistic outlook on what study involves. Our Accreditation of Prior Learning (APL) scheme recognises that many students, particularly mature students, enter university with an extensive range of expertise, skills and knowledge derived from a variety of professional, vocational, community, leisure and personal contexts. By 2017 technology jobs will outstrip all other parts of the economy – Be ready. For further information relating to Information Sciences at Northampton Business School contact Susan Bailey on 01604 892036 or MANISHA CHAMPANERI “I feel the knowledge I have gained is invaluable. I am in no doubt that this groundbreaking MSc in ITSM, with its strong focus on international standards and best practices such as ISO/IEC 20000, PRINCE2® and IT governance, is becoming a mainstay offering.” CIARAN LONSDALE “Literally everything I’ve learnt seems to be relevant! I am thankful to have received an education so well aligned to cutting edge practices in the professional workplace, such as ITIL and PRINCE2. Coming to Northampton Business School for the Business Information Systems Top-up year was invaluable to my understanding of Business and IT, which I only fully realised once in the professional workplace. My time at Northampton put me in an advantageous position.” LARISSA MANN Larissa who works at Nationwide says “Within my second year of study I was able to secure a new role within IT as a direct result of the knowledge and skills that I had gained through the course on databases and SQL, the development lifecycle, analysis and design techniques and web development, to name but a few.”
  6. 6. Saturday 7th May saw our Events Management students taking a trip to the ‘2009 FIA GT Championship’ at Silverstone.The day consisted of a tour around the circuit with commentary from Silverstone’s events management and safety teams. Students were able to appreciate the practical as well as theoretical need for quality, strict budgeting and safety in event planning and design.The FIA event was broken down into each component (using large scale planning documents) which the students were able to keep for future reference. Students were given V.I.P treatment for the day and were able to watch the races, wander into the paddocks and talk with the race teams. By far the most positive aspect was that our students were able to get individual attention from the event organisers and ask as many questions as they liked to further their practical knowledge of the various, and diverse components that make up our events industry and ensure it is one of the very best in the world. The University of Northampton is now a member of Eventia, an Industry association which is the voice of the events industry and will provide our students with further industry reports, guest speakers, and allow the events management course team to keep up to date with all developments in the industry. With a view to developing closer ties with the regional food drink industry,Adrian Pryce, a senior lecturer in Northampton Business School’s Business International Management division, is interested in hearing from anyone working in or involved with food drink or associated companies in the packaging logistics areas, and also professional service firms with a strong industry focus. Our objective is to deepen our knowledge of this key sector, one of the East Midlands four strategic priorities, as the East Midlands in general and Northamptonshire in particular display signs of an evolving industry ‘cluster’, being especially strong in ready meals and prepared foods eg salads, as well as having high profile producers such as Weetabix close by. A database is being built up gathering the following information: * Alumni working in the sector * All sector contacts * Academic contacts in other universities with an interest in the sector, including overseas * Food drink industry case studies (from anywhere in the world) * Academic articles, books and other pedagogical material drawn from the food, drink related industries If you would like to contribute, please contact Adrian Pryce on 01604 892036 or email: Calling all foodies! Events Management Students drive out to Silverstone Circuit Northampton Business School is delighted to announce the opening of Chesham House, in Kettering. Chesham House is an historical listed building which has been refurbished creating high quality office units, hotdesking and virtual office solutions. Chesham House is the perfect venue for new and growing businesses offering the following facilities; • 11 small/medium office units (some with kitchens) with easy in easy out terms • Free parking for office tenants • Hot desking and virtual office solutions • Meeting/training room for hire • Communal kitchens • Security 24/7 access • Supervised reception • Business Link support services on site The Centre is aimed at businesses within the design and technology sector though other sectors will be considered. For further information please contact 01604 892036. Exciting Openings at Chesham House N O R T H A M P TO N B U S I N E S S S C H O O L BUSINESS WISEJ U N E 2 0 0 9 E D I T I O N
  7. 7. NBS launches new Foundation Degree in Retailing N orthampton Business School is delighted to launch its Foundation Degree in Retailing, which will accept its first cohort of students in September 2009. The introduction of this course comes at an important time for the retail sector.We are all aware of the current economic climate and the challenges that this is presenting for employers and employees alike. Nevertheless, retail remains the UK’s largest private sector employer, employing around 3m people in nearly 300,000 organisations. Indeed, February 2009 saw positive growth in sales in food, parts of non-food and non-store retailing, demonstrating the resilient nature of parts of the sector. Although trading conditions are undoubtedly tough, the importance of investing in training and education has never been greater. Skillsmart Retail, the Sector Skills Council for retail, urges retailers “ to continue to invest in skills over the coming months … [to] ensure that retailers have the skilled staff they need to take full advantage of the upturn when it comes”.This should come as no surprise to retail employers. Data from Skillsmart Retail indicates that the retail sector suffers from a high level of staff turnover, with retailers in the East Midlands reporting particular difficulties in recruiting staff possessing customer handling, teamworking and management skills. Investing in retail employees, whether they are sales staff or managers, can improve levels of customer satisfaction as well as helping to attract and retain high quality staff by providing opportunities for career development.To set this in context, Skillsmart Retail reports that each member of sales staff that leaves costs the employer £2550, rising to £4300 for each manager that is lost. The Foundation Degree in Retailing at Northampton Business School addresses skills shortages identified by regional retailers, and is consistent with Skillsmart Retail’s vision for the future of retail qualifications whilst being delivered in a flexible format to accommodate the needs of learners in work. The course is designed for all retail employees, and is completed over a period of two academic years (September to June). In line with Skillsmart Retail’s vision, the course develops retail-specific expertise (e.g. merchandising), professional expertise (e.g. finance and human resources) and generic expertise (e.g. team working and customer service).The flexibility of the course is achieved by using a combination of daytime, evening and work based learning.Work based learning is a form of experiential learning that utilises the workplace as a means of enhancing students’ skills and knowledge. According to Anne-Marie McGillion, Head of the Centre for Work Based Learning at Northampton Business School,“… this style of learning is recognised within higher education as a valuable tool for offering students the opportunity to develop their professional and personal skills, to apply and expand their knowledge, to increase their confidence and to improve their employability status”. Students therefore attend classes for just one morning and one evening per week during the 26-week academic year in addition to the work based learning. A key feature of the course is the use of client projects, where assessed work is based on real retail problems. Recent projects have been completed for Sainsbury’s, Daisy Roots, Barclaycard Business, Northampton Town Centre Management team and Althorp House, giving students the opportunity to exercise their learning in different parts of the retail sector. For more information about the course, please contact Dave Larkan (Course Leader) on 01604 892036 or email: Enterprise Club The University of Northampton’s Enterprise Club has filled 25 places on the new regional start up programme for graduates and undergraduates, Enterprise Inc. 25 would be entrepreneurs will spend the rest of this year planning and training for the launch of their business idea before receiving a bursary to help with their start up costs. Around half of those accepted onto Enterprise Inc. are current undergraduates at The University of Northampton and we wish them luck with their future business. Local schools were invited along to Northampton Business School in June for a business enterprise day.Year 12 students had a taste of what skills are needed to run their own business as well as exploring their own strengths in a creative way.They were also able to get a first hand look at what the Business School has to offer. For further details please contact Sharon Irwin on 01604 892036 or visit the Enterprise Club website at
  8. 8. NBS manages the Business Link Start-up Service contract in Northamptonshire; a one stop shop for anyone wanting to start a business.This free service offers; business skills workshops, support from a business advisor and a qualified mentor, helping entrepreneurs start up their own business and survive through its first year.We are delighted to report that, at end of year (2008-09; 5April 09) we have surpassed all our key targets, the ‘headline’ outcomes being: 673 jobs created 435 businesses started 228 businesses receiving mentoring 751 people assisted with skills development The NBS BLSS service has been audited by both KPMG and EMB and passed both audits with flying colours. Customer satisfaction statistics report that over 90% of clients were very or fairly satisfied with the service we provided.This matches, exactly, the 90% of our students who reported overall satisfaction with our teaching/ learning in the National Student Survey (NSS) – placing NBS 13th out of 110 business schools in the UK. BLSS is supported by banks, accountancy practices, local government and the third sector, a number of these ventures include: • Barclays in Northampton,Wellingborough, Kettering, Brackley and Corby, who promote the service to clients. •Around 12 small to medium accountancy companies involve themselves in our activities, such as awarding grants and delivering mentoring support to new businesses. Representatives from these companies regularly attend Enterprise Club meetings, which brings entrepreneurs from the local area together to network and share knowledge and expertise. The BLSS team also have frequent contact and joint working with all Northants Local Authorities, a few of these joint working ventures include: • Corby – through contacts with the LSP board and the ERDF steering group, we deliver enterprise coaching to hard to reach groups. • Kettering – by providing joint training events, are involved with the LSP board, and have worked with them to open Chesham House as a new business centre. • Northampton – we are working with economic development to develop a programme for market traders to improve performance and sustainability. The BLSS team are also working with the following organisations on joint events, to join up provision, and to refer clients to each other: • Job Centre Plus - across county • Endeavour training – Corby • Corby Community Partnership •Wellingborough Innovation Centre • NNDC • Evolve your future – Rushden •TNG – Countywide • HM Prison Wellingborough – business start up training and accredited level 4 module delivery to prisoners ContactWray Irwin on 01604 892036 or email: for further information. RESEARCH NEWS Over One-third Admit Technology Addiction Over one-third of respondents in a groundbreaking global study admit to technology addiction.This research, conducted by Northampton Business School , Cranfield School of Management, and AJM Associates, examines the effects of information communication technology (ICT) on individuals. Quantitative data from over 1,200 respondents across a broad spectrum of society ranging from lower income groups to top managers and directors enabled the researchers to divide responses into four separate profiles regarding technology adoption, work-related usage, personal related usage, pleasure orientation and addiction to ICT. The research team labelled the four profiles as: 1) TYCS (Technical Younger Company focused with high Stamina), 2) MACS (Middle Aged, Corporately minded and Senior (in terms of role), 3) YACS (Young Autonomous, personally well Connected and Sensitive (in their conduct of personal relationships), and 4) HOCS (Hands on Older, Corporately minded but Static (in terms of job related mobility). “Shockingly,” states Dr. Nada Kakabadse, Professor in Management and Business Research at Northampton Business School,“over 70% of the YACS indicated that they spend up to 50% of their working day accessing social network sites such as Facebook and MySpace to satisfy their social/personal needs.”The report shows that more than 50% of all four clusters admit to using the internet for flirting, affairs and sexual advances. Over 55% of the YACS stated they have made sexual advances online and have had direct or indirect sexual advances made towards them in return. Similarly, between 26% and 47% of the other three groups admit to being the target of sexual advances and between 18.5% and 35.9% to making sexual advances. The full report is published by Cambridge-based Sigel Press as an electronic whitepaper download and is available at Business Link Start-up Service (BLSS) N O R T H A M P TO N B U S I N E S S S C H O O L BUSINESS WISEJ U N E 2 0 0 9 E D I T I O N