We are a non-profit student-led consultancy business with a vested interest in the welfare of the community. Operating out of St Andrews we work with local organisations and enterprises, which ensures that every client project makes a difference within the town or region. 
Our Background
Our Mission
Our Progress
Originally established as the Playfair Project, our company has achieved impressive growth since the completion of its first project cycle in May 2014. While still a relatively new concept, student consultancy is becoming increasingly prominent in the UK as organisations realise the value of inviting students to assess their work. We believe in the fresh, unique perspective students can bring to client issues and aim to facilitate this interaction. Members receive exemplary training, support and facilities so that they can successfully satisfy the briefs set by our clients.
Our mission is very much bilateral in nature. The business was founded on the proviso that members will have the opportunity to develop their ability to work in a real company with real outcomes. Playfair intends to construct a strong foundation upon which individuals can build their future career paths. Though this is partially achieved through training and advice, it is predominantly accomplished via interaction with clients and external stakeholders. In return, organisations receive valuable advice and solutions from highly motivated, gifted and ardent students. 
Playfair Consultancy Group has now worked with over 100 students and more than 15 clients. We have established a strong reputation among students, which has led to increasingly competitive recruitment cycles. This has been the byproduct of shrewd internal processes and the outstanding work of our members. Equally, we have continued to produce great outputs for clients and have undertaken projects with the wide scope and complexity that our consultants enjoy. In the near term, we are looking to solidify our position within the community and devise a plan for the future. 

Our Business

Our Provision
Our business exists to deliver value to client organisations, university students and supporting partners. We have now worked with over one hundred students on more than twenty different projects and constructed a fruitful business network within our local community. 
Clients
Receive: 

  • A purpose-built team of consultants. 

  • Flexible acess to univeristy resources.

  • Insightful reports, presentations & data.

  • Workshops to foster strategic thinking.

  • Valuable business propositions & plans.
Students
Receive: 

  • Real exposure to client-facing scenarios.
  • Opportunity to experience a fully functioning business.
  • Enhanced capabilities and promising job prospects.
  • Intro to professional systems and tools.
Receive: 

  • Accredited training scheme.
  • Exclusive, funded events.
  • Resources and materials.
Partners
Receive: 

  • Access to aspirational & intellectual students.

  • Greater brand awareness.

  • Product placement.

  • Invitations to our presentation evenings.

  • Access to the local student & business communities.

Our Business

Our Vision
We aim to empower students and businesses alike by creating situations that align their goals and values. Our consultancy services enable students to gain access to challenging work experience and development opportunities while benefitting the community by solving client issues. 
Our Value Proposition
We are committed to the long-term success of our members and clients. 
Transitivity: We act as a collective and place an emphasis on equal opportunities. Our members can move freely across the organisation.

Lean

Transparency: While we appreciate the confidentiality of our services and partnerships, we maintain an open communication style, both internally and externally. We communicate our goals openly and honestly.
Efficiency: Given our non-profit nature, we are cost-sensitive and avoid waste. Continuous improvement is deeply engrained within our organisational DNA. 

Opportunity

Community

Team: While we value, respect and promote the talents and motivations of the individual, we understand that we can best unfold our potential as a collective. We encourage unity, cohesion and collaboration in our working practices.
Ownership: We urge our members to help change the company and take ownership of their responsibilities. Equally, we lock our partners into a co-creation process, where they take ownership when collaborating with us.
Quality: We are concerned with the quality of our offering to both students and stakeholders. We choose our services conscientiously. 
Embedded: We appreciate the character of our town. The business does not exist and operate in isolation, but within our local community. 
Learning: We are devoted to creating learning experiences for students. Our services supplement the academic curriculum and allow students to apply their skills and knowledge in a practical setting.
Responsibility: We take our role within the community seriously and put a lot of effort into meeting the expectations of our stakeholders. Simultaneously, we hold our stakeholders responsible to our agreements. 

Our Business

Our History
Founded in October 2013 by three students at the University of St Andrews, Playfair Consultancy Group has grown from a novel concept into a community interest company and leading supporter of collegiate students and local organisations.
Our business is named in recognition of Hugh Lyon Playfair, the provost of St Andrews in the late nineteenth century and his unparalleled contributions to the local business community. Despite experiencing much obloquy during his tenureship, it was his ardour and energy that secured the future of the town's leading establishments. His schemes saw the revival of the Royal and Ancient Golf Club, much reform in municipal affairs and the strengthening of the University's financial position. Our founders shared Playfair's enthusiasm for improving the town and established the Playfair Project to have a role in its future. 
May 2013
The late Hugh Lyon Playfair
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Town Provost 1842 - 1861
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May 2013 
SIE Idea Explosion
Dougal Adamson creates a proposal for a new student consultancy business and presents it to the Scottish Institute for Enterprise at Idea Explosion earning first place and a grant. Mirko Semler and Katy Sayk join the initiative in September.
November 2013
Establishment
Equipped with start-up capital and a summer of planning, the inaugural recruitment for Playfair Project is launched. 24 students join the team with 8 working in operations and the rest in consultancy for the business's first 3 client projects.
April 2014
Incorporation 
The first client projects are successful and lead to the acquisition of more for the next term. Meanwhile, the number of applicants to Playfair almost triples, multiple training partnerships form and the business becomes a legally registered CIC.
May 2014
Board Transition 
Two of the founders leave after graduating with the other taking non-executive legal directorship. Four members are chosen by the founders to become managing directors: Joshua Pooley, Kirsty Gillespie, Alex Carr, and Angus Townsend.
September 2014
BID Project 
In its second iteration cycle, Playfair secures its most influential client to date. Two project teams work with Business Improvements District, a partnership of many of local business owners, on waste management and marketing projects. 
May 2015
Inaugural Elections 
The business celebrates one year since its incorporation and changes how board members are chosen. All four positions are to be filled internally, but via an election process. Josh and Kirsty retain their positions while Alex and Angus graduate.  
September 2015
Client Milestone 
Playfair arranges three projects with two large clients in Morton Pitmilly and the University of St Andrews, deeming one of them our tenth external client. The business will have completed fourteen projects by the end of 2015. 
September 2016
Rebranding
The business changes its registered name to Playfair Consultancy Group C.I.C. to establish its permanence and improve the clarity of its role in the local community. Many new organisational effectiveness systems are rolled out for the first time.