At Cloud IQ we like to do things a little differently every now and then to ensure we’re continuously encouraging innovation across our teams. That‘s why we hosted our first ever London Hackathon last month.
So what exactly is a Hackathon? A Hackathon is where a group of people (usually engineers / developers) analyse a product’s code and assess and implement a new idea to improve the existing product. Oh, and we only gave our teams a few hours to do all this before presenting their ideas in front of our judging panel.
Three teams took part in the Hackathon (A,B,C), all of which came up with some incredible ideas. After a VERY long deliberation, team B emerged victorious, but every idea produced from the teams has been submitted to the development team for implementation in future product releases. What are these new ideas you may ask? You’ll have to wait and see!
Although coming up with new ideas is always a great result, the main objective of this exercise was to inspire and foster creativity amongst our teams.
So what are the benefits of introducing a Hackathon (or indeed any other activity that breaks away from the traditional working day)?
Idea creation: The Hackathon was a great opportunity for our people to bring new ideas to the table in front of key stakeholders and get recognised for their contributions
Teamwork: The day was designed to encourage collaboration across different teams and give our colleagues the opportunity to work with people they wouldn’t usually work with
Competitiveness: A bit of friendly competition never hurt anyone... By gamifying the event, our teams grouped together and were incentivised to achieve the best outcome.
Improving skill sets: The Hackathon enabled our teams to explore and improve on other core skills which are vital to any business, including presenting & working under time constraints
Sense of achievement: Being tasked with something that is not apart of your daily routine and completing it gives a huge sense of achievement to our teams and the winning team was rewarded with a trophy at our last company meeting - gaining recognition from the wider business
Following the success of our first London Hackathon, we will be introducing them monthly to inspire our team and of course the new team members who will be joining us during our recruitment drive.