2015-2016 Projects

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Nutmeg Big Brother Big Sisters


Background: Nutmeg Big Brother Big Sister is a non-profit organization serving as Connecticut’s largest mentorship network.  They facilitate matches between adult volunteers (Bigs)  and children (Littles) in order to provide the kids with a positive role model in their lives.  Their main issue is that only 1/3 of the Littles receive a match, as many more children apply for the program compared to adults.  Also, their application process is very manual and outdated, causing the matching process to drag along for an excessive amount of time.

Results and Benefits

We did a statistical analysis of the current matching process, discovering the total average time for an adult volunteer to progress from initial inquiry to the final match to be over eight months.  With the process standard deviation exceeding a year, it was evident that outliers were present.  We ran the analysis again with outliers removed and found the average total time and standard deviation cut in half.  Moving to an online application will reduce incorrect data entry, the likely culprit of much of this variation.

We then did an exploration to determine the feasibility of actually moving this application online.  We created a set of digital screens that depicted how the online solution would appear.  We then conducted a cost analysis by sending these screens to several vendors to determine the development, implementation, and maintenance costs. Due to the simplicity of the system, the development cost would be waived  The total cost for the first year would be between $5000-$6500, reducing to $4000 per year following that.  The time savings for the adult applicants have the potential to reduce from 8 months to 2 months with this implementation.



Keep Sight


Background: KeepSight is a start-up non-profit company focused on helping prevent vision loss and the two leading causes of adult blindness in the US. Although these diseases are treatable, people lose vision because they do not seek help immediately enough. KeepSight innovates self-test vision grid tools that enable people to monitor their vision between annual vision check-ups and empower them to advocate for their own health by seeking help rapidly if they notice a change in vision. Moreover, KeepSight planned to build a partnership with Regeneron which is the marketing lead of vision care in the pharmaceutical sector. Our objectives are to set up efficient business models and to develop the pricing strategy for keep sight patent extension products.

Results and Benefits

Three mainly actions were conducted to further understand the pharmaceutical market: SWOT analysis, Patient flow analysis, and potential pricing strategy applied through decision modeling. A suggestion was proposed to the client that adds the company brand value to partner with Regeneron strategically. In the future, our plan is to help KeepSight launch new products into the target customers with a reasonable price and maintain the Apps and official website in order to collect big data from user communities.



Hartford Food Systems



Non-profit founded in 1978.  Their mission is to support food security and a healthy and sustainable food environment.  This project works with a specific branch of business – the Hartford Mobile Market – an on wheels distribution market.  From December through August the Mobile Market had $20,000 in sales, accounting for a small portion of the $500,000 total budget for Hartford Food Systems.

Currently, the Mobile Market operates at less than breakeven; their goal is to move towards operational efficiency.  Their primary costs are bus operation, staffing, and produce (cogs).  Right now, they have a register that only tracks revenue at each stop; they do not track inventory or items sold.  This is a perfect project for students interested in cost accounting or those looking to gain experience with startups.

All startups go through this process of discovering learning, growing, and changing how they operate.  Anyone that has started a business can relate to the challenges the Mobile Market is facing right now.  Students that work on this project will have full access to all financial data and tours of the mobile market will be available.

Consulting Objectives:

They have 2 upcoming events on their timeline they could use help with.  The first is compiling an operations manual by the end of March; this is needed to apply for a USDA grant.  The second is to show a need for updated technology for a $25,000 tech grant by late winter / early spring.  The Mobile Market is clearly in need of updated inventory tracking and a point of sale system, making the tech grant a no-brainer.  With new technology comes a new operations manual and best practices on how to use it.