MS in ITM Trio Places Second at FUSION 15 Case Competition

MS in ITM Trio Places Second at FUSION 15 Case Competition

Left to right: Mehul Doshi, Deborah Anthony of the itSMF USA Board of Directors, Aisha Gandhi, Mehul Raisinghani, Blaine Bryant, director of BMC Software and a competition judge; and Dr. Ravishankar Narayan

A trio of Naveen Jindal School of Management graduate students collaborating remotely worked so well together they finished in second place in the case competition of a national conference for information technology service and support professionals.

Team members Mehul Doshi, Aisha Gandhi and Mehul Raisinghani, all MS in Information Technology and Management majors, earned the right to compete at the event, the FUSION 15 conference held last Oct. 31 in New Orleans. The conference served as the annual gathering of the IT Service Management Forum, a professional organization for IT service and support practitioners, academics and others interested in the industry.

Taking home $3,000 and a trophy from the competition, the JSOM team also got a chance to gain insight through the exercise and meet successful members in the field.

The road to the event began in Dr. Ravishankar Narayan’s IT Services Management class, which examined and explained how organizations engage and manage their IT services throughout the services’ lifecycle. After picking six teams to compete internally during his Fall 2014 class, Narayan chose a winner to represent UT Dallas at this event.

Last October, FUSION 15 organizers provided a business case and then gave that team roughly two weeks to prepare for New Orleans.

“We weren’t all in Dallas in October ’15, and so we had the further challenge of not all being in a room together face to face,” Mehul Doshi says. “But even that prepares you for the real world, where this situation becomes more common. We challenged ourselves to think big when it came to solutions but to also keep a company’s limitations in mind.”

Narayan, who is the director of the MS in Business Analytics program at JSOM, found their financial analysis to be a strong key and the students’ preparation to be top-notch. “They were asked to help come up with an effective [project management office] for a company,” Naryan says, “and their solutions were achieved with a key understanding of not impeding when it comes to cost.”

Doshi says among their leading solutions for the case-competition company was a change in its cloud component in terms of private and public concepts and content.

Beyond the pride of finishing ahead of many teams, including Indiana University, the JSOM team holds on to many positives going forward. “You want graduates to have the ability to look back and not just see a technical issue, but that they embraced a point of view and improved the way they would communicate an analysis,” Narayan says. “That helps their own confidence and builds them into leaders.”