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Project Snowcat

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Four members of the Snowbasin senior project team pose for a photo

Team Members
Frank Voris, Nelson Perla-Ward, Juan Pablo-Villareal, Daniel Matthews

Faculty Mentor
Edison Tse

Snowbasin logo

The Client: Snowbasin

Snowbasin Resort is a ski resort near Salt Lake City, Utah.

The Problem to Solve

Snowbasin wants to improve the operations of its trail grooming department. Specifically, they want to address the high cost of grooming the ski trails of the resort. Snowbasin currently operates a fleet of eight Snowcat grooming machines, and they want to optimize the use of this expensive machinery. They asked the team to investigate:

  • How to optimize the buying and selling process for the snow groomers.
  • How to create meaningful improvements unrelated to the purchase and sale of snow groomers.
  • The high attrition rate of the grooming department staff. 

Engineering a Solution

Recommendation and Deliverables

The team collected data analysis and insights through interviews and studying operations metrics. They then recommended:

  • Snowbasin should invest in improved data collection systems, and specifically use web scrapers to assess groomer operations data.
  • Reduce the size of the groomer fleet by 1 snow groomer and reduce the number of groomer operators by 2.
  • Interview employees and collect feedback on developing a solid incentive compensation plan that prioritizes performance.

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