The Experience of Local Business | White 7 

Work with University students on the digital challenges of your business

The Covid-19 pandemic has provided a catalyst for digital transformation, with many businesses forced to find alternative ways of delivering goods and services. The imperative for businesses to adopt digital technology in order to compete, innovate and grow, has never been stronger.  In response to this, Lincoln International Business School is recruiting SMEs in Lincolnshire to work with students on the UoL4.0 Challenge to tackle the digital challenges in their businesses.

How does it work?

UoL4.0 Challenge pairs teams of Operations Management students with businesses to explore how the use of technology could lead to the development of new commercial ideas and new ways of interacting with customers and suppliers. The students identify how this could be addressed, with a focus on digital solutions, and will present ideas back to you. There is a limited time commitment from the business, and all engagement with the students will be online. From the business’s point of view, it provides a fresh perspective on the business, new ideas to consider, and the opportunity to work with the University and to support students. Businesses will also have access to an advisor from the Business Lincolnshire Growth Hub to help implement solutions.

The Experience of Local Business, White 7 

Stephen Jones, the owner of White 7, upmarket chauffeur services in Lincoln took part in the UoL 4.0 Challenge in September 2019.

Stephen became a business owner in 2018 when he bought his White 7 franchise package and began offering a luxury chauffeured service for customers in Lincolnshire and across the UK.
Running a one-person business, Stephen was responsible for many of its aspects from admin to marketing. In need of extra support, particularly in the area of social media management, Stephen turned to the UoL 4.0 Challenge Project.

Working with the team at Lincoln International Business School, he identified the following challenge for the students to explore: How can White 7 Lincoln improve their SEO for website visibility, as well as enhance their social media engagement / inbound marketing strategy to develop a brand and grow sales?

One of the key recommendations put forward by the students was the need to raise the profile of his business, by developing a video.  As a result of taking part in the project, Stephen commissioned a video which has proved an effective approach to advertise his brand and reach a wider market. You can watch Stephen’s video below:


In addition, Stephen joined the UoL4.0 Challenge project with a collaborative relationship in mind, which in turn would help the students to gain real-world experience and improve their employability. This is what he has commented about his involvement:

If you are an SME in the region and are interested in taking part in the next cohort, please get in touch with Liz Price ( or Herbert Mapfaira ( The project takes place throughout the year, running in two academic terms:

  • 1st term: October- December
  • 2nd term: February-May

This project is part-funded through European Regional Development Fund and eligibility criteria for participation will apply.

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