Undergraduate computing students often produce high quality final-year projects with a software product that has the potential to become commercially viable.
Some of the more enterprising students return from industrial placement year with project proposals from their placement employer. This is either a new project or an existing one for further development. Some students return to their placement provider after graduation as full-time employees and deploy the products of their project within their employer's organisation. This sandwiching of development between the University and the commercial or industrial company enhances the strength and quality of the work that our students are capable of producing. There are projects however, having no external sponsor, that would be equally successful were they given a similar opportunity. It is at this stage that enterprise-aware tutors could identify possible projects to be placed on a "Commercial Possibility" watch list. The students are encouraged to engage with the "Enterprise" process at this point offering them the opportunity to be open to ideas leading to further enhance their project once they had completed the module.
One such project, FormWatch (http://eprints.hud.ac.uk/8226) was identified as being capable of providing business advantage to any company using a website to interact with its customers.
Employing the project student, after the successful completion of the project, as a part-time Research Assistant was a cost-effective method of making further progress to commercial exploitation. This approach provided first-rate experience to launch a commercial entrepreneur from the University's undergraduate courses.
The ease of finding commercial partners, willing to incorporate the application into their business and offer the service to their clients, was enhanced with the prospect of making an application via various research and development funds. In this instance we secured initial funding via the University of Huddersfield Collaborative Ventures Fund.