Once again this year, students in the course "Economics of Motivation" had the opportunity to work as consultants in the workplace to test theories in practice. The assignments are based on how companies motivate their employees, and the students are tasked with analyzing and recommending measures that can increase motivation. The best reports were presented in the finals of the Sandnes Sparebank Case Competition at the UiS Business School on November 14th.
The course "Economics of Motivation" at the UiS Business School specifically focuses on how workplace motivation occurs through both theory and practice. Students learn to apply what they have learned in lectures by creating a report based on a real company. The main task is to evaluate how the employer motivates its employees. Students work in teams and choose the company they want to investigate themselves.
The three student teams that submitted the best case reports competed for a first prize of a whopping 40,000 kroner provided by Sandnes Sparebank.
The winners of this year's Sandnes Sparebank Case Competition were Team IVAR, consisting of master's students Ingrid Flood, Kaleb Kristensen, Ragnhild Leidland, and Ingvild Mørk Salvesen. The team conducted their case study at IVAR, Inter-municipal Water, Sewerage, and Waste Management.
The winning team was unanimous – IVAR was generous in sharing necessary information to make a good assignment. It was a practical way to apply the knowledge we have learned in class. Being consultants gave us a taste for more and felt meaningful. The results we found can be utilized by the company. It was an incredibly enjoyable experience, challenging, but definitely worth the effort.
Good benefit for both students and the company.
CFO and Deputy CEO of Sandnes Sparebank, Tomas Nordbø, sat on the expert committee that evaluated the groups' case studies together with Head of department, Venke Furre Haaland. The students were well prepared this year, and it was clear that they had spent a lot of time with the companies to get a picture of how they focus on motivation and reward.
– The experiences help prepare the students for a strong performance and career in the business world. Participating and contributing in this practical competition for master's students in business administration provides both Sandnes Sparebank and our corporate clients, as well as other businesses in the region, with the best-trained candidates from the UiS School of Business, says Nordbø.
Knowledgeable students collaborate with the workforce.
When students enter the workforce, it is important for us at Sandnes Sparebank and our corporate clients that they are as well-prepared as possible. As an important regional bank, it is part of our social mission, explains Nordbø. The collaboration between Sandnes Sparebank and the UiS Business School has been beneficial for both parties, but especially for all the students lucky enough to have chosen this course.
The teaching staff at UiS
Professor Mari Rege at the UiS Business School, together with PhD candidate Espen Sagen, has been teaching the course. The latter has also been responsible for organizing the case competition. Department head at the UiS Business School and jury member Venke Furre Haaland praises the students and the academic staff for their thorough work. The students have put in many hours of work that have yielded good results both academically and, not least, practically.
Text: Egil C. Svela