Businesses accessing the skills and talents of RGU students

Today we hear from Emily Bishop from Talent Exchange about how businesses can access the skills and knowledge of RGU Students. 

Emily Bishop Talent Exchange Over the past year, I have been working as a placement student on the Talent Exchange project at Robert Gordon University. The project is designed to make it easier for businesses to access the skills and knowledge of RGU students. We work with businesses of all sizes and industries, but in particular; the initiative is aimed at small and medium-sized enterprises and organisations in the third sector. Talent Exchange offers flexible solutions to working together, including one-off challenges, short term projects, and placements within the business. 

As a placement student myself, I know only too well the benefits that these work opportunities can offer students. However, on the other side of this exchange is the businesses and how they benefit from working with fresh talent.

We spoke to Malcolm Davidson, Business Development Manager at International House Aberdeen about his experience working with a group of MSc Digital Marketing students. 

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Can you describe the project that was undertaken?

International House is a private language school in Aberdeen teaching English as a foreign language to adults from all over the world. It was chosen as a case study for RGU’s MSc Digital Marketing students as part of their coursework. The group of students had to assess our website, SEO, Google Analytics and social media channels and make recommendations in the form of a digital audit. 

What was the outcome of the project? 

RGU provided us with the two highest-scoring digital audits for us to use in our business. As a result, we came away from the project with a huge amount of great recommendations which we could implement in our own digital strategy. It also helped us define exactly what we need to know about digital as a business and become more informed and self-sufficient in this area. The project was managed by the students’ lecturer and was carried out as part of their coursework. Hence, the only time commitment we had to make was the wait for the finished audits.

How do you feel your business benefitted overall?

It’s been massively beneficial to us. Not only do we have lots of great recommendations to implement, it has also helped us become far more informed on digital. Many of the actions we’ve taken from the digital audits have already seen improved site performance and engagement on our social media. It’s also nice to know that our business helped RGU’s students put their learning into practice. 

How do you think the student benefited?

The fact that students get real world, practical experience as part of their degree highlights the strengths of RGU’s courses. So I’m sure that using a real business as a case study for their coursework gave them an insight into the kind of challenges they might face in the working world. I’m really honoured that RGU chose to collaborate with International House Aberdeen for this project. 

What would your advice be to others considering working on a project with RGU students?

I’d advise any business to keep an open mind and get in touch with Talent Exchange to find out more. There are so many projects which businesses can get involved in. When I first spoke to Talent Exchange a digital audit was not something I had in mind but I’m so grateful that we were offered the project, it’s made a massive difference.  

For more information on Talent Exchange, visit www.rgu.ac.uk/talentexchange or to talk to a member of the project team about a work experience opportunity email talentexchange@rgu.ac.uk or call 01224 262046.

International House Aberdeen: www.ihaberdeen.com

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