School of Computing

Kent IT Consultancy (KITC)

The KITC is part of the School of Computing, and is a student staffed IT consultancy, delivering services to local small and medium enterprises (SMEs). Our mission is to solve business problems with technology and to make our student consultants more employable.

"I discussed the KITC during all of my interviews and I think it really helped to set me apart from other candidates. Many employers are looking for well-rounded candidates and I think the KITC helps fill this gap for technology students. Having examples of working with real customers is very valuable to an employer and can make the difference between you and another candidate.”

Grant Dreyer, Graduated 2014, Career Path - Telecoms

KITC logo

Frequently asked questions

How does the KITC work?

  • The KITC is a business unit which is part of the School of Computing, and contracts with local businesses to supply its services to them;

  • The KITC has offices at both the Canterbury and Medway campuses;

  • Any School of Computing student can apply for a role in the KITC which they will carry out during stage 3 of their degree;

  • Each year the KITC has a set number of Student Consultant roles which are awarded based on a candidates suitability for the role, assessed during our recruitment process;

  • If you are offered a role in the KITC, you are expected to register for CO650 which is the accompanying academic module, which in Canterbury you can do instead of a CO600 group project (in Medway this will depend on your programme);

  • During your time in the KITC you will work 10 hours a week in the KITC for both the Autumn and Spring terms, reporting to the KITC Director or their nominee;

  • Academically, you are assessed through reflective reports that you write based on your experiences in the KITC

What’s in it for me?

As a KITC Student Consultant you will not only be able to do work that makes a significant contribution towards your degree, but you will gain skills and experiences that will give you an employability boost compared to students who don’t have this experience.

  • You will get the opportunity to work with real businesses, and help to create an impact in these businesses by using your technical know-how to help them overcome problems.

  • Through working with clients, you will deepen your professionalism, develop advanced communication skills, and gain insight into a wide range of real business problems.

  • You will have the opportunity to develop your leadership skills, by taking on one of a number of management roles within the KITC.

  • Instead of working in just one function (e.g. business analyst), you will be expected to gain experience in the full breadth of the KITC’s operations. This ranges from helping the KITC to market itself in order to generate a pipeline of customer leads; manage its internal resources; suggest and run innovation projects to improve our internal processes; and to take part in recruiting the next round of consultants.

How do I apply?

  • If you are a School of Computing student and in stage 2 or on placement then you are eligible to apply for a role in the KITC.

  • You apply for a role in the KITC by sending your CV and a Covering letter explaining why you think you’d make a good consultant to

  • We have a LinkedIn group KITC Applicants which you can request to join - this group contains resources that will help your application to the KITC, and gives you the ability to ask questions to current student consultants.

  • Our recruitment process is carried out in rounds, the number of rounds is dependent on the number and quality of the applications that we receive each year. Typically we run two rounds, one in the Autumn term and one in the Spring term, but if we identify enough high quality consultants in the first round we will not run a second - therefore our advice is to apply early.

  • You can apply at any point during the academic year - we are currently recruiting for consultants to start in September 2019, and the deadline for the first round of recruitment is currently 30th November 2018.

  • Once you apply your application will go through a shortlisting process, if you make it through this process you will be invited to a 1 hour competency based interview.

I am in Stage 1, how do I get involved?

You may be at Kent in part because you want a role in the KITC during your final year, but that may seem like a long way away right now. Whilst we don’t accept applications for the KITC until you reach stage 2, you are still invited to join our “KITC Applicants” LinkedIn group, doing so provides the following advantages:

  • Opportunity to ask questions of current consultants,

  • Access to the resources that we provide to help you prepare your application

  • Updates on the recruitment process, including any announcements that we make about closing dates etc.

In addition to the LinkedIn group, the KITC will be running several skills training sessions aimed at Stage 1 students. These will be announced through the LinkedIn group, via Social Media and through the School. They are an excellent way to find out more about the KITC, as well as to gain skills and experience that will help in your application.

What kind of work would I do?

Have a look at our client portal to see which services we offer to our clients.

Essentially the KITC delivers two services to local SMEs; technical mentoring and digital quickstarts.

Technical Mentoring

The philosophy behind technology mentoring is that business owners, especially those in rapidly growing businesses, will frequently need to make decisions relating to information and communication technology, and that confidential and impartial guidance from a knowledgeable third party facilitates greater clarity and confidence in the decision making process.

Technology mentoring is applicable in many situations including :

  • Solving business problems with technology.

  • Defining and improving business processes and workflows.

  • Accelerating business growth through technology.

  • Evaluating software.

  • Developing new ideas that require technology.

As a KITC consultant you will be given training that will allow you to assume the role of technical mentor, where you will work directly with business owners in face-to-face consultations, drawing on your technical knowledge and experience to deliver the technical mentoring service.

Digital Quickstarts

When it comes to digital technologies like websites, e-commerce, and social media, our expectations of quality as consumers are very high, led by big brands and online only businesses that have developed expertise in generating online experiences that delight us.

For SME’s, particularly those who aren’t operating in a technical field, whether they are starting out building an online presence, or updating their existing presence, they face a daunting challenge. Whilst there is lots of help available, particularly in the form of digital agencies, who are able to meet consumer expectations, this comes at a significant price tag, often running into tens of thousands of pounds; for a small business this is a huge investment, and it is often difficult to see what return they will get on this investment. The aim of the KITC’s digital quickstart services, is to help small businesses to inexpensively get started and help them to build the business case for continued investment in digital technologies. We currently offer digital quickstarts in the following areas:

Websites - using website builder platforms like Squarespace, we help our customers to build a well designed, usable, albeit basic website that allows them to promote their brand and services. In doing so we focus on helping the business develop the internal capability to maintain and build the site themselves, as well as teach them how to use website analytics to demonstrate the value the website is contributing to their business (e.g. increased sales)

E-commerce - using e-commerce platforms such as Shopify we help businesses take their first steps in creating an online sales channel to expand their market reach beyond their local area. Like the website quickstart, we focus on helping the business develop their internal capability so that they are able to administer and grow their online store themselves, and can track their progress through analytics and sales reports.

Consultant testimonies

“I am teaching secondary Computer Science and ICT, with curriculum and professional studies based at Institute of Education in London. Quite different from the KITC, but I have the KITC to thank for my abilities to reflect on professional practice which is helping me out A LOT on this course. Also the customer facing experience, adaptability, documentation and organisational skills I gained at the KITC have been a massive help too. Simplifying information for clients has definitely been the most important skill that I’ve transferred into teaching.”

Rebecca Arnold, Graduated 2015, Career Path -Teaching

School of Computing, University of Kent, Canterbury, Kent, CT2 7NF

Enquiries: +44 (0)1227 824180 or contact us.

Last Updated: 26/07/2019