Widener Wins Regional ERPsim Business Competition
Widener School of Business Administration students placed first and seventh in a regional competition aimed at simulating a real-time business environment.
For the fourth year in a row, the students joined the ERPsim academic competition led by Professor Yvonne Antonucci.
“This is the same system they would use in business,” Antonucci said. “The lessons they learn inside the classroom are being used here in real time to run a company very quickly.”
Senior Matt Blankenstein, a sports management and operations management dual major, said the competition emphasizes for him the value of a Widener degree in the business world.
“Widener really opens up the door for you to get great work opportunities,” he said.
What is the ERPsim?
This simulation is an academic competition with students from five different universities running a real-time business using professional SAP software.
Each team is trying to grow its dairy company, while adjusting to market shifts in the German economy and competing against other teams’ companies.
The SAP company provides institutions like Widener with real business software through a university alliance program, allowing students to have access to the best resources. The opportunity to use these tools and compete in academic environment is another example of the program-specific leadership development opportunities available to Widener students.
Experiences like this give them an edge as they enter the job market.
How does it work?
Students have to make fast decisions during three rounds, each consisting of 10, two-minute-and-30-second days. Students had to handle and solve pressing issues, such as how many supplies they needed to order, restock, market and price. The goal of the simulation is to be more profitable than the other teams who are also running companies. Other schools that participated were University of Delaware, Penn State, Rider, and Salisbury University.
Students prepared for the event in class by creating analytic dashboards and connecting them to the SAP system, helping them sift through all of their data to make smart business decisions.
What do students say?
Widener had two student-led teams out of 25 in the simulation, both of which placed in the top ten. On one team was Herb Hampton and Blankenstein who won first place in the simulation; on the other team was Asiyah Kennedy, Brooke Spruill, and George Funk, who placed seventh.
Each of these students will be graduating with an SAP recognition award for successfully completing three SAP content courses. Widener offers these courses in a variety of business areas including marketing, business analytics and management information systems, accounting, operations management, and finance.
SAP is big deal in our major. It's used with a lot of companies, so getting as much experience as we can before we graduate really helps. — Spruill, junior business analytics major
The celebratory atmosphere was radiant in the business lab as both teams rejoiced in their achievements. In the wake of victory, Hampton and Blankenstein reflected on how Widener had helped them get to this moment and how it will help far beyond.
“You have to make quick decisions and be quick on your feet,” said Hampton, a senior accounting major with a minor in taxation. “I think that is a very good skill to have. Being able to quickly analyze what’s going on and understand how to react was really important in the game. That will definitely translate after college.”