Cranfield university take on the largest eAuction game in Market Dojo History!

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Just when we thought that things could not get any bigger, Cranfield had topped their previous years’ record and participated in the biggest Market Dojo eAuction game to date, with over 200 students participating on the 4th December 2020.

Okay so the plan for this piece of writing is to not to mention the C(orona) word once. If I do feel free to send complaints to VerySorry@MarketDojo.com

A strange year it has been, the utilisation and adaption to work with technology to keep the ball rolling is more important than ever. Fortunately however, at Market Dojo HQ, with clients all around the world we are all too used to virtual meetings at all times of the day or night. Whether it be a demo to Brisbane at 4am or a social catchup to Silicon Valley at 11PM on a Friday evening.

I will say this felt like unfamiliar territory: 200 students, 36 breakout rooms, 36 specified accounts and passwords and 4 of the team on the ground to manage it. In it for a penny, in it for a pound. 

Let’s meet the crew: 

Nick Drewe

At 6’3 Nick Drewe is a flagpole of a man, in between catching his head on a door frame and telling you he went to school with Prince William, Nick can be found acting as Director and Cofounder of Market Dojo and is a seasoned professional in the world of auctions. All around a great asset to the crew. 

Craig Knowles

Craig as head of Marketing and is one of the original members of the MD(Market Dojo) team. He is sure to be found looking after his Ponies or with a trusty Jack Russel at his side. Craig has always liked the idea of being a teacher so I tend to find he thrives in this hectic environment. 

Jon Pole

Careful with this one, can be very useful and knowledgeable at the right time, but if you allow him too much airtime can really put his foot in it with the nonsense that comes out of his mouth. Like a dog of a leash. I’m sure he’s found time to tell you in his British accent how South African he is. Always gets the job done, albeit in his own way.  

Tyrone Simpson

The new guy, sometimes the most sensible of the lot. In one line of speech you will hear how the West Country resonating in Mr Simpson’s speech. Enjoys a gert lush Scrumpy and if you really win his favour he may even call you his babber. Wins the cool guy award. 

Hosted virtually via Zoom, which had been unchartered territory for Market Dojo and myself (Tyrone Simpson), the most recent member of the business development team. This was my first presentation with Cranfield university, so needless to say I was a bit apprehensive, however, there was a wealth of experience from Nick Drewe and some familiar faces from last year’s success in Craig Knowles and Jon Pole. 

To ensure things ran as smoothly as possible, preparations were duly made with two auctions set for the day – A Japanese style auction on two separate lots, followed by a ranked auction. Students were split into 36 different teams, in comparison to last years’ 29 – Great to see there was increased interest in online procurement. Let the games begin!

The Cranfield University students were very enthusiastic and showed a keenness in their questioning. There were four different scenarios, which meant that students had to be very meticulous in their approach to bidding. There were 36 teams split over 4 different scenarios, each wanting to try their hand at being the ‘supplier’ to walk away with the winning contract!

Now the way in which this auction works is that each supplier is given a supplier profile. This profile will details things such as: 

  • Previous business history 
  • Experience within the market
  • Preferred suppliers
  • Profit margins
  • Scope for the effects of winning the business at certain cost levels

The idea is the students are role playing as that supplier and trying to put themselves in the supplier’s shoes in order to make a decision that they feel that business would make. Are they desperate for that business or would it just be a nice to have? Do they need order volume as a new business or would this help them to achieve their annual targets? etc. 

In our Japanese Auction, for example, where there are no rankings available we can actually see how the final supplier actually ends up bidding against themselves to the end of the auction:

A lot of suppliers evidently hit their margin but some chose to continue or bow out. 

In the ranked auction we can actually see some reducing well beyond where they were meant to as they got caught up in the fun and excitement: 

As you can see there are a lot of different bidding tactics happening simultaneously. 

We gave the students no tips on bidding and decided to let them just do what they felt was most natural, and strangely enough, we can see that some have naturally utilised skills such as bidding in small increments and bid shadowing to find their competitors placement just based on their own rank changing. 

Overall we really loved the opportunity to do this and it was great to work with the Cranfield team again, who are wonderfully organised and prepared in these scenarios.

If you know an organisation or institution that would benefit from our industry knowledge, please get in touch with us today at events@marketdojo.com

January 25, 2021

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