Project Profiles 2012-13

2012-13 Projects


Project Description:

Opened in 1994, Rocky Top provides Charlottesville’s only public indoor climbing walls, as well as a public racquetball/wallyball court, free weights, and workout equipment.  The gym transferred ownership in late 2011 and is a family-run business.  Since the purchase the focus has been on providing much needed maintenance to improve the facility, and the facility now boasts state of the art climbing equipment.  The CCoD engaged with Rocky Top to identify ways to capitalize on its strong brand and community to grow revenue through memberships, day passes, rentals and additional equipment sales.. The team also worked to ensure that any new customers wouldn’t over-crowd the existing facility.

CCoD Deliverables:

  •  Customer survey and analysis: The CCoD leveraged Rocky Top’s highly engaged customer base to understand key customer requirements and make recommendations for maintaining and growing the base
  •  Capacity analysis: The CCoD helped Rocky Top understand peaks and lulls in demand and made recommendations on how to smooth demand
  • Billing analysis: The CCoD make recommendations to optimize the customer payment process and eliminate customer pain points

Darden Second-Year Partner:  Jennifer McGee

First-Year Team Members:  Jeff Bates, Jennifer Hammond, Joey Miller, Megan O’Keefe, Alison Stewart, Stav Yoffe



Project Description:

OLLI offers courses, lectures and field trips to active adults over 50 in the Charlottesville area. Their instructors are active and retired university faculty and community professionals who volunteer their time. This fall they are offering 79 courses, 3 Special Presentations and 2 day-long Field Trips. OLLI wants to transition from a semiannual membership fee to a yearly fee and structure the membership and tuition pricing to continue to attract active adults. The project with CCoD will involve analyzing various pricing options, marketing strategies and member benefits to enable OLLI to develop a new fee structure and membership package that invites new membership and retains current members.

CCoD Deliverables:

  • Competitive Analysis: CCoD helped articulate OLLI’s positioning in the community through competitive mapping and customer surveys
  • Customer Surveys:  CCoD developed and administered a customer survey to help determine key value drivers for current OLLI members. This process helped determine the importance of pricing, professors, course selection, and location
  • Workshop:  CCoD hosted a workshop with key OLLI staff to discuss findings and best practices to help OLLI achieve its funding goals.

Darden Second-Year Partner: Brett Annunziato

First-Year Team Members: Praj Damle, Arshbir Ghuman, Jake Lyssy, Lisa Mckenna, Brandon Prather, Andrew Olesen



Project Description:

The Administrative Services Unit (ASU) within the Dean of Students Office includes three departments: Business Services & Operations, Marketing & Communications, and Technology Services. Among their many duties, the ASU staff manages operations for 7 buildings across UVA Grounds and supports well over a thousand student events each year with 16 FTEs and 50 student staff.

The Operations group within ASU enlisted CCoD’s help to improve event space management by looking into current job descriptions, existing processes and event management technology.  CCoD helped to identify process inefficiencies and bottlenecks in current operations and consequently identified and outlined a future operating state that was designed to better meet the organization’s goals. CCoD also conducted a capabilities comparison with key event management competitors to understand new potential revenue streams during event space down times as well as industry best practices.

CCoD Deliverables: 

  • Current State Assessment:  A thorough analysis of the processes, organization and technology of the Operations business unit within Business Services and Operations.
  • Future State Design:  Based on the insights from the current state analysis, recommendations for a future state were developed to address gaps and inefficiencies in operational processes, technology and organizational design.
  • Competitive Analysis:  Comparison of ASU’s current event management capabilities to other key players. Recommendations included suggestions regarding how to be competitive with industry leaders within the budget and resource constraints of ASU.

Darden Second-Year Partner: Tarun Keswani

First-Year Team Members: Brandon Nelson, Michael Humenansky, Kat Baronowski, Chris Lawrence, Clare Seekins, Caroline Kalinoski

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