MIS 3400 Business Intelligence is giving students what all undergraduates look for, practical experience in the classroom that can be translated into the real world. For the first time, students taking this course will have the opportunity to partner with Revenue Management Solutions (RMS) to work on a project proposal and a mock client contract that resembles work being done currently by international consulting firms. This opportunity has been made available by utilizing Associate Professor of Management Information Systems (MIS), Mari Buche’s, excellent networking skills. She reached out to Ashley Johnson, a 2008 MIS and Marketing alumna and RMS employee, and the idea for the partnership was born.
Johnson noted that even in the three years since she graduated from Tech, there have been updates to the curriculum to meet industry needs. This course is particularly advanced because it gets practical experience into the classroom to students from a variety of disciplines. The students were given a project proposal that is supportive of the Business Intelligence curriculum, and they will compete in five or six teams of three to four students. All of the groups will be working on the same client contract. They will each need to present a deliverable, in the form of either a Microsoft Excel decision support tool or web portal, while functioning under a team structure with positions including: consultant, analyst, and developer. A combination of technical and business skills will be required to produce the desired outcome.
Through this partnership, RMS will provide SBE students with a dedicated server, demonstrations of BI applications, and access to project specific sales data for student manipulation. In return, RMS is looking for an innovative data warehouse design that can meet the Tampa-based company’s increased demand for decision support services based on transaction level data. For this project MIS 3400 students will be required to develop and document implementation of a new data system that fuels business decisions for any retail or restaurant company. By the end of the semester, each group will have achieved the following objectives:
- Data Assessment Document
- Data Dictionary
- Entity-Relationship Model
- Dimensional Model
- Extract-Transform- Load Process Document
- System Prototype
- System Proposal Document
This project is still in the early stages, with the students only just being introduced to the project and made aware of the client expectations at the RMS Project Kick-Off event this week; however, Johnson and RMS are excited about the opportunity to work with Buche and Michigan Tech students who are creative and innovative. I’m sure the feeling is mutual.