Cornell University

February 19 2013

Human Resource Strategists

Team of ILR graduate students wins invitational in Ohio

Refreshing the possibilitiesA team of MILR students copped first place at the Ohio State HR Invitational Case Competition this month.

ILR's competitors were Kate Guydan MILR '14, Royce Lee MILR '13, Lindsay March MILR '14 and Josie Trine '13.

The foursome was assigned a recruitment strategy case the morning of Feb. 8. It had 22 hours to prepare a human resources plan that would help PepsiCo attract more campus talent.

A submission deadline of 7:30 a.m. loomed.

Other than a three-hour sleep break, the team huddled in a room at Ohio State's Fisher School of Business.

Guydan, Lee, March and Trine made the 7:30 a.m. deadline, put on their dark suits, fired up their PowerPoint presentation and presented to six judges.

The Cornell analysis was weighed against those of students from the University of Minnesota, Ohio State, Rutgers University and the University of Illinois at Urbana Champaign.

Big Red suggestions for building PepsiCo's candidate pool included redesigning its career website, developing online games and establishing on-campus "ambassador" positions to increase personal interaction with potential hires.

Classroom learning at ILR helped prepare the team, Lee said.

"We were able to use our knowledge from Professor John Hausknecht's 'Staffing' course to break down the staffing process into its pieces. This helped us organize our ideas in a logical manner, which the judges found quite easy to understand," he said.

Professor Chris Collins' 'HR Strategy' course, Lee said, also gave the team tools to break down HR problems and to identify solutions that solve the root cause.

"We spent time focusing on problems and giving solutions to the problem at hand," Lee said. "The diversity of background and experience also helped the team."