March 10, 2021Print | PDF
A team of fourth-year Business Technology Management students represented the Lazaridis School of Business and Economics and Wilfrid Laurier University exceptionally well at the 2021 CaseIT competition.
Hosted virtually by the Beedie School of Business at British Columbia’s Simon Fraser University, Kaitlyn Hall, Logan Naudi, Romane Ng, and Cassandra Pike went up against 64 other competitors on 16 teams from universities around the world to earn second place in the eight-hour case deliberation held on Feb. 15. The team also won second place in the 24-hour event, earning them a ‘wild card’ spot in the five-minute pitch round competing against the University of Calgary and Laurier’s perennial case competition rival, the National University of Singapore.
The team did not advance to the finals, but came in first in the introductory video contest in which team members highlighted interesting facts about their respective hometowns.
“This is a terrific outcome for the team and I’m so proud of them,” says coach Josephine McMurray, faculty advisor for case@BTM and professor of business technology management and health studies. “Their dedication and commitment have been exemplary and the fact that they competed so well against some long-established international schools is truly an accomplishment.”
“For our first eight-hour case, we were presented with a problem faced by Arc’teryx, an outdoor clothing company,” says Ng. “They wanted our input on how they could adopt internal systems that incorporated more automated workflows where stakeholders can submit their supply chain data with minimal participation from staff, as opposed to their current manual process.”
“Our 24-hour case involved Electronic Arts and revolved around decreasing toxicity within the video gaming community,” adds Pike. “The industry is facing a lack of accountability from users who use abusive language, which discourages participation from diverse players. There is also an issue with cheating and an unhealthy amount of time spent gaming.”
The Lazaridis team’s approach to addressing these issues involved recommending an accountability scoring system for users, implementing daily scheduled incentives to reduce ongoing hourly play, and leveraging machine learning to detect cheaters.
Preparing to take on the multiple formats and variety of problems presented in this case competition series has been a long and involved process for all the team members – including coach McMurray.
“Dr. McMurray has done a great deal to help us prepare for the case competitions,” explains Naudi. “She has put on eight- and 24-hour case competitions for us every Sunday morning for the past 15 weeks. On top of this, she brought in different judges to provide us with great feedback as we worked to improve our team’s performance.”
For all the team members, case competitions like this one help to build their confidence and skills to meet the real-world business challenges they will soon be facing after graduation. Investing in experiences that reinforce the BTM curriculum and the Laurier spirit of collaborative teamwork has been a key outcome for everyone involved, including Hall who describes her favourite part about case competitions.
“My favourite part is right after you figure out the main components of your solution and you can see the process really start to fit together. When it all makes sense and you can see the solution come together like a story to solve the problem that was posed; it’s very satisfying. It’s also great to receive positive feedback from coaches and judges because it shows you that you’ve delivered a job well done.”
The Lazaridis School congratulates the BTM case team on their outstanding performance and wishes them the best of luck in their post-Laurier endeavours. For more information about the Lazaridis BTM program, visit our website.
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