By Minahil Aziz, BSc Management
180 Degrees Consulting (180DC) is the world’s largest student-led consultancy for non-profits and social enterprises. The company operates across 150+ branches in 30+ countries, offering high-quality consulting services to social impact organisations to help them develop and extend their services. It exists to improve the effectiveness of worthwhile companies by helping them overcome challenges such as limited resources, staff, and funding.
Inspired by 180DC’s mission, co-presidents Manvi Laddha and Hania Imran launched the SOAS branch in September 2020, hoping to provide members of this incredibly diverse and unique student body the opportunity to get involved with amazing projects that have a lasting impact across the globe.
“Since launching the branch, they have trained over 50 consultants, secured seven partnerships, and provided high-quality strategic and innovative solutions to clients across several different business functions such as finance, marketing, operations, partnerships, and sponsorships.”
Since launching the branch, they have trained over 50 consultants, secured seven partnerships, and provided high-quality strategic and innovative solutions to clients across several different business functions such as finance, marketing, operations, partnerships, and sponsorships. SOAS 180DC completed projects in industries of human rights, education, sustainable development, and youth empowerment services locally and globally, having worked with clients in the UK, South Africa and India.
Some of the phenomenal work done by the consultants includes a project with ‘Together We Thrive’, an organisation that creates initiatives to connect like-minded Muslim women with different people from all backgrounds across the UK. They aim to inspire and support people from religious communities, enabling them to use their knowledge and experiences to help themselves and others. Consultants supported ‘Together We Thrive’ with their ‘Open My Mosque’ initiative, where teams were tasked with collecting data on women in mosques and designing key deliverables and roadmaps to assist with the project’s marketing campaign. The completion of the project resulted in a larger platform for the British Muslim population to speak about their experiences and opinions on mosque discrimination, with the intent to increase female accessibility in mosques. June Derz, a consultant working on this project, described her experience as ‘an amazing process, learning about the struggles of Muslim women accessing mosques has been eye-opening’. Derz regarded the 12-week project to be an ‘invaluable time spent working with SOASians on such an important social cause.’
Another successful pilot project was executed with ‘Opportutoring’, a student-led organisation that connects refugees from all around the world with English speaking tutors, who can provide weekly one-to-one language tutoring. Consultants assisted in expanding their outreach to refugees and displaced individuals in the UK and the Middle East, by establishing an effective monitoring and evaluation system to assess the impact of Opportutuoring on beneficiaries. Furthermore, teams supported the firm in their re-envisioning and provided essential market research to uncover opportunities for expansion, that centred on possible client collaborations.
Working with such organisations allows our consultants to gain insights into the industry, with the strong support of our executive committee and professional mentors from companies like Deloitte and Strategy. Outside of our projects, we have also had various workshops and training sessions in collaboration with SOAS Consulting Society and our partner organisations. The most recent event was co-hosted by Consulting Masters and covered key skills that consulting firms look for in applicants, provided model CVs, and discussed how to stand out amongst a crowd.
In the new year, we will be running a second round of recruitment for our new project cycle. This is the perfect opportunity for anyone interested in getting involved with a hands-on consulting project that aims to deliver a social impact – no prior experience is needed! Finally, to discover more about our branch and stay updated on our projects, events and recruitment cycles, check out our socials and sign up to be a branch member here: https://linktr.ee/SOAS180DC, and email us at [email protected], should you have any questions. We look forward to seeing you at our next event!
Photo Caption: 180 Degrees Consulting SOAS logo (Credit: @180dcsoas via Instagram).