PC Business Analytics Class Presents to Citizens on Real-World Project

As the fall 2020 semester drew to a close, student teams in Dr. Adam Villa’s Business Analytics Consulting Project course prepared for a major business pitch. Having analyzed a complex and multi-variable data set, students focused on the finishing touches for their strategic recommendations and their client presentations. 

In this iteration of the Providence College School of Business real-world consulting project class, the corporate partner was Citizens – one of the nation’s oldest and largest financial institutions, headquartered in the Ocean State. Citizens wanted to address how to better recruit, promote and retain top talent.

Citizens’ executive vice president of talent acquisition, Kristi Robinson, commented on the importance of courses like these, “Data analytics is critical to the future of our company – and nearly every company on the planet – because it allows us to make better decisions, reduce costs and find more efficient ways to do business. But being able to tell a story using data is a skill that many colleagues will need to be successful in the future…”

The first half of this graduate and upper-level undergraduate course concentrated on learning a variety of data analytical techniques and tools. Students then integrated external research and applied their new analytical skills to develop viable business solutions for a corporate partner’s key strategic priority. An important skill taught throughout the course, and clearly on display during these presentations, was relevant storytelling with data to build data-based buy-in for one’s recommendations.

As with past partners, Citizens executives were impressed with the Providence College students’ data analytical and storytelling acumen.  MaryAnne Pelland, head of Talent Acquisition Strategy and Services noted, “many of the teams’ ’astute’ recommendations mirrored recently launched or planned initiatives…the students did an amazing job of looking at our data and understanding where the gaps are.” “The analysis they did have helped us better understand the profile of top talent, which will result in better hiring and promotion decisions. Data analytics skills this group showed are something all employers will be vying for,” she added.

Past real-world consulting project partners have included a health insurance company and different types of manufacturers. If your organization would be interested in partnering with the Providence College School of Business to work on a real-world project with PC students, please contact the Dean’s Office at pcsb-dean@providence.edu.

Graphic for PCSB real world consulting project with Citizens