Students provide local insights to Singapore Airlines' KrisShop

11 September 2023
Global partnership program gives students real-world experience
University of Sydney students shared ideas with Singapore Airlines' flagship retailer, KrisShop, on ways to innovate in the Australian market, through a project unit that aims to help solve the challenges of industry partners.
Group of students outside a building

Industry and Community Project Unit students visit Singapore

A group of 18 University of Sydney students across different disciplines visited Singapore in June for a global Industry and Community Project Unit (ICPU) in partnership with Singapore Airlines’ multi-channel retailer, KrisShop. KrisShop tasked students with exploring opportunities for growing its market share in Australia by understanding the needs of local audiences and creating value for customers. 

Providing students with opportunities to work together on real-world problems in partnership with a wide range of employers is one of the ways we’re preparing graduates for the workforce.
Professor Richard Miles, Pro-Vice-Chancellor - Education, Enterprise & Engagement

During their time in Singapore students analysed current trends in the Australian consumer market, travel physiology, digital accessibility, communication technologies and local competition. They then proposed new ideas on how KrisShop could innovate and best serve Australian customers.   

“Global partnerships and programs such as these have a lasting impact on students,” said Professor Richard Miles, Pro-Vice-Chancellor (Education – Enterprise and Engagement). “They not only equip students with key job-ready skills, they also open up new possibilities and increase student confidence as they make important considerations about their future careers.” 

Through the project students gained industry insights and experience by working closely with Singapore Airlines staff and learnt about sector-leading innovation at the airline’s Digital Innovation Lab, KrisLab.  

Student groups came up with ideas around sustainable and locally-sourced products, website optimisation, buy now pay later methods, the use of frequent flyer points to pay for popular subscriptions services, social media campaigns and pop-up stores.  

Bachelor of Commerce student Rubaiyat Mahmud took part in the project unit. “Our group’s research delved into the core values and consumer identity prevalent in the Australian market. We put forward an idea to revamp the KrisShop eCommerce app and update their product offerings, customising them to cater to the preferences of the Australian consumer.

“Engaging with experienced industry professionals from KrisShop, working in a multidisciplinary team and applying my academic knowledge to solve a real-world business challenge has given me the confidence to take on complex challenges in my future career,” said Rubaiyat. 

KrisShop CEO Jason Lee said the students provided useful perspectives on the Australian market.

“Program participants provided the KrisShop team with more insight into the Australian market’s shopping habits, preferences and more. As KrisShop continues to expand our reach in Australia, the solutions that came about during the session’s discourse have given us a valuable perspective of the intended target audience.”

Partnerships key to education offerings 

The ICPU program supports the University’s aspiration to deliver transformational education, with partnerships key to its education offerings. Taking place either within Australia or internationally, the program brings together students from all disciplines across the University to work together on authentic industry challenges.  

“Providing students with opportunities to work together on real-world problems in partnership with a wide range of employers is one of the ways we’re preparing graduates for the workforce. Listening to and working together with students and employers ensures our programs meet industry needs in a fast-changing employment landscape,” added Professor Miles. 

Each year the program attracts more students and partners, with 2023 shaping up to be the biggest year yet.  By the end of 2023, more than 10,000 students will have completed over 300 industry projects with more than 130 partners in seven countries. 

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