28th June, 2022
Back for its eighth year, students from across Australia and New Zealand are invited to compete in the MYOB Digital Challenge and present their innovative tech solutions to the world.
The annual MYOB Digital Challenge is back in 2022, with registrations open until 6 July.
Coordinated in partnership with the University of Auckland’s Case Club (UACC), the competition offers university students the opportunity to develop a new tech solution that addresses a common business problem.
That problem is presented as a case to registered participants, giving them just over a week to develop their solution and produce a video between five and 10 minutes long to showcase it (along with a one-page executive summary).
Finalists are then to be determined by 27 July as judged by a panel of MYOB staff and UACC executives including Chief Financial Officer Caroline Rawlinson, Chief Product & Technology Officer Darren Smith and Chief Sales & Support Officer Daniel West. From there, the finalists go on to receive tailored mentoring and to further refine their ideas ahead of the official MYOB Digital Challenge Trans-Tasman Final, to be held on 4 August.
“As both Australia and New Zealand seek to become leading digital economies and as the role of technology in our lives continues to grow, recognising, developing and celebrating young people with an interest in technology, an entrepreneurial mindset and a knack for problem solving is more important than ever,” said MYOB CTO Darren Smith.
“MYOB is proud to continually invest in nurturing up-and-coming talent and the MYOB Digital Challenge is a fantastic one-of-a-kind opportunity for university students to test their abilities in practical, real-world scenarios and learn from some of the best in the business.”
The winners of this year’s MYOB Digital Challenge will share in a prize pool currently valued at $8,500, with winners remunerated in their local currency.
But competitions like this offer other benefits at many levels for businesses, students and education providers.
For education institutions, these partnerships fit neatly into their aim to provide students with practical, on-the-job experiences.
Meanwhile, students benefit from the opportunity to apply what they’re learning, showcasing their skills and creativity to potential employers and giving businesses a clearer idea of their potential as future workers.
2021 competition winners Nicholas Kondal, Laith Saeed, Sonia Wang and Emily Zou – a team of engineering students from the University of Auckland who built a functional prototype for an app that would help small businesses collect and automatically analyse customer feedback called ‘Rev-you’ – agree that competing in the challenge meant a whole lot more than a potential share in prizes.
“Having a panel of industry leaders judge and recognise our idea, implementation, and presentation, is a great confidence boost and a source of motivation for us,” said Kondal.
“Each team member has taken something away from this experience, and the analytical mindset of always considering the end-user is bound to help us in any problem-solving scenario in the future, no matter where we end up.”
And, as MYOB’s CFO Caroline Rawlinson noted, the calibre of the competition is usually quite high.
“The MYOB Digital Challenge has been supporting and fostering the skills of emerging local tech talent for several years now and is one of the few programs out there that truly offers young people a chance to combine their business and digital know-how in a setting that is genuinely reflective of what they’ll experience in the workplace,” she said.
“The calibre of entries we’ve had in the past has been exceptional, and personally I’m excited to see the 2022 entrants present their ideas and showcase their commercial acumen as they explore taking their solution from concept to business.”
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Since launch in 2015, more than 1,500 students have entered to participate in the Challenge. Last year’s competition alone saw more than 270 students from 140 teams register to compete for a chance to win a share of the prize pool.
Many of these students go on to begin their careers with MYOB or at other firms, while others follow their entrepreneurial mindset towards a career in the startup space. Regardless, the MYOB Digital Challenge offers students a practical opportunity to flex – and that means a better results card for everyone.
“Our teams at MYOB see the positive flow-on impacts that digitally-focused products or solutions can have for local ANZ businesses, every day,” said MYOB Chief Customer & Support Officer, Daniel West.
“The right product design and customer experience can drive new growth, improve productivity, and empower stronger insights-led decision making.”
“It’s this kind of thinking that I’m looking forward to seeing more of in this year’s Digital Challenge, as local students from across Australia and New Zealand demonstrate their technical skills and out-of-the-box thinking to tackle a specific, real-world problem.”
Registrations for the 2022 MYOB Digital Challenge close 11pm NZST / 9pm AEST Wednesday 6th July 2022. For more information and to register, visit the MYOB Digital Challenge website.