Students Help Bring Innovative Research to the Forefront of the B2B Manufacturing Industry

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Siteworx, a leading digital experience agency based in Washington, D.C., teamed up with Whitman students Margot Dileno ’15, Peggy Kanterman ’16, Alexandria Lee ’15 and Joseph Simek ’15 to study customer engagement among businessto-business (B2B) manufacturers as part of a Consurtio pilot project. Siteworx president and CEO Ken Quaglio is a 1991 Whitman MBA gradate. Together, the Siteworx and student team created a unique approach to understanding how B2B manufacturers will engage and serve customers in the future, as research predicts a significant volume of offline business moving online in the next few years.

“Leveraging the talent of students from my alma mater to develop a new body of knowledge for B2B manufacturers has been incredibly rewarding,” said Quaglio. “We set out to find companies that do customer experience well, those that don’t and why. We want people to say, ‘Where are we on the index?’” Four students majoring in marketing were hand-selected to work on the research project, the benefits of which were many and mutual. Siteworx Chief Marketing Officer Patricia Mejia credits the students with making significant, actionable contributions. “They uncovered gaps we hadn’t considered, brought original ideas to the table and delivered a work product that is of real substance and value to our firm and our clients.”

Whitman senior Peggy Kanterman developed industry knowledge, practical skills and a sense of ownership through her work on the project. “We were motivated to perform at our utmost potential because we were doing work for a real company—not just for a grade,” she said.

Kanterman was surprised to find a potential new career path through the Siteworx project.

“Our final client presentation was the most rewarding experience of the project. It was amazing to share our work with the professionals who would be putting it into practice. I felt like a true consultant. Before, I had no idea what consulting entailed and now I’m applying for consulting jobs. The Consurtio project opened my eyes to a career path I hadn’t before considered.”

Alison Kessler

Alison Kessler is the alumni publications and outreach manager at the Martin J. Whitman School of Management at Syracuse University. She has amassed more than 20 years of experience in integrated marketing communications in the corporate, agency, not-for-profit, higher education and government sectors. She holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in journalism and mass communication and psychology from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.
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