Here’s Why Your Employees Will Benefit from an HR Hackathon

Here’s Why Your Employees Will Benefit from an HR Hackathon

You've decided to hold an HR Hackathon to attract new talent and present new solutions to ongoing company problems - but did you know that it can also benefit your current employees to participate as well?
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A (Corporate) Non-coders’ Guide to Joining Hackathons

A (Corporate) Non-coders’ Guide to Joining Hackathons

Although some coding ability is definitely shared among most hackathon participants, it isn’t a fundamental skill for creating winning solutions. In fact, non-coders can absolutely get value out of attending a hackathon. We show you how.
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EU FOSSA 2 Hackathon Team

7 Simple Tips for Teamwork in a High-Pressure Situation

We all know teamwork makes the dream work! So hows does that work in a high-pressure situation like a hackathon? We've got 7 tips on how to keep your cool when the clock is ticking.
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Paticipants at RecommanDays - La Poste

So You Need a Tech Stack: Which One Would Be Best for You?

When it comes to hackathons, there is as much collaboration as there is competition. Whichever stage you're at, you will definitely need the best tools at hand.
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Presentation at Hack Day from BeMyApp

The Impact of New Technologies on Businesses

New technologies create new opportunities and can revolutionize many different industries. Here are some ways that these advancements can benefit businesses across various sectors.
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Participants at SANOFI CAPTIVATE #2

6 Reasons a Hackathon Is the Essential Add-on to Your Career

Attending a hackathon is a fun, fast-paced, invigorating experience! But it also helps with the long-term of your career. Not sure how? Read on to learn 6 reasons why hackathons can be essential for your future.
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Sanofi Gravity Hackathon Participants

3 Effective Tips for Managing Your Time During a Hackathon

Time management during what may be a stressful event can prove to be tricky. Here are three tips for managing your time during a time crunch hackathon.
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Participants in #PaxTechHack

So You Want To Promote Your Hackathon...

You're hosting a hackathon and now you need participants. Now what?
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LesJeudis Codin' Night < Battle / Royale >

A Few Key Things to Expect From a Hackathon Event

Feeling a little nervous for your first hackathon experience? Here are a few things to keep in mind when you attend.
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FAQ

What is the purpose of a hackathon?

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Hackathons are not single-purpose events, but rather multifaceted opportunities for both the host organization(s) and participants to achieve a diverse set of objectives. 

Some of the most common applications for the host(s) include; discovering business solutions, accelerated product/service launch, staff training and engagement, canvassing for new talent, and improved developer relations.

What happens during a hackathon?

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A hackathon is a versatile competition that brings together creative thinkers to solve various problems in a predetermined (typically short) amount of time. There is a wide variety of hackathon event structures but the typical framework is as follows;

  • 1. The event challenges, objectives, rules, parameters and timelines are clearly defined by the host organization(s)
  • 2. Members from ideal/target demographics are invited and encouraged to participate
  • 3. Participants form teams of 4-6 people
  • 4. Teams work to find creative solutions to the challenge and build a prototype of their concept
  • 5. Once complete teams demonstrate their product to a panel of expert judges
  • 6. Winners are announced and prizes awarded, the organizer announces the winning team

Why is it called a hackathon?

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The term “hackathon” is an amalgamation (more formally known as a portmanteau) of the words  “hacker” and “marathon”.

A “hacker” generally refers to computer programmers, designers, innovators, and other domain experts. The marathon component is derived from the short time frame in which most hackathons are structured. Challenges typically push participants to work for extended hours without sleep in order to complete their prototype.

The term "hackathon" was first coined in Calgary, Canada, on June 4, 1999 for the OpenBSD Hackathon.

Check out our article "What is a Hackathon?".

How long is a hackathon?

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Typically hackathons run for 24-48 hours depending on the expected outcome, however some extend beyond this typical frame if more extensive prototyping is needed.

How do I prepare for my first hackathon?

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  • 1. Study and explore previous hackathons by the host organization and winning solutions. These insights will help you to anticipate the types of challenges you’ll face

  • 2. Determine where to find the resources you will need during the hackathon

  • 3. Learn how to effectively work in teams, by attributing the right task to the individual with the correct skillset

  • 4. Explore and research the host organization’s industry

Are hackathons worth it?

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Hackathons offer added value to both organizers and attendees. They are a great option when looking to find and assess business solutions, work with startups, train your staff, build a talent pool or launch a new product/service. As an attendee it’s a chance to network with others in similar fields, bring your ideas to life, learn new skills, or push outside your comfort zone and improve your skills.

Who can take part in hackathons?

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Each hackathon is unique and may or may not have specific prerequisites. Some events are open to anyone interested, while others may be specific to students, those with particular certifications or credentials, for example. It’s best to explore the guidelines before registering.