With so many virtual events taking place in 2022, it’s critical that yours goes off without a hitch.
You could certainly organize and launch a hackathon on your own (and many do), but these high-energy, fast-paced events typically have a long list of moving parts and several people working behind the scenes.
With the right tools, you can smoothly execute each phase of the planning process, foster relationships among participants, and give your hackathon the best chance of success and innovation.
We’ve compiled a list of our four favorite tools to help you navigate the planning process as smoothly as possible.
Most hackathons are organized and attended online, and Miro is a great tool for encouraging more collaboration among participants, as well as mentors and sponsors.
Miro is a free online collaborative whiteboard platform that is fast and simple to use.
How to use it when organizing your next hackathon: Miro is entirely virtual, making it ideal for engaging participants from all over the world.
Teams can use the digital whiteboards for group brainstorming and idea planning because they move in real time.
There are also video conferencing features to allow teams to meet and collaborate on the go, as well as community templates to suggest useful resources to help participants navigate the hackathon process.
What we like best about it: its speed! Miro is extremely fast, allowing large groups to collaborate on the same whiteboard at the same time without interruptions.
While we all require human interaction, traditional video conferencing leaves a lot of room for awkwardness (uncomfortable silences, anyone?).
Gather is a video chat platform designed to eliminate the awkwardness of video conferencing and make virtual interactions more human.
How to use it to plan your next hackathon: Gather has some fantastic video features that make organizing social events a breeze.
Before the hackathon, organize “parties” and events with themed decorations and built-in games to bring teams together and break the ice.
What we like: The immersive experience! Users can compete in games, watch sporting events together, and simply mingle in a fun, laid-back environment without leaving their homes (or sofas).
Hackathons are a lot of fun, but some organizers struggle to match the buzz when the event is completely online, so this can be a really great way to encourage participant interaction.
After you’ve laid the groundwork for your hackathon, you’ll need to spread the word to as many people as possible.
Facebook has some great advertising features that can help you reach more people and generate buzz for your event—important it’s to note that Facebook advertising is usually paid, so you’d need to have a small budget set aside for this.
How to use it when planning a hackathon: First, modify your company’s page settings so that visitors see your Events listed first in the drop-down menu (among About, Photos, Reviews, and so on).
When you cram hundreds of brilliant and creative minds into a small space, a tremendous amount of energy and excitement is generated.
Virtual hackathons may lack the buzz of their physical counterparts, but they offer numerous advantages.
Traditional hackathons can cost thousands of dollars in food costs for hundreds or thousands of attendees, venue rental space, utilities, and staffing. Even a small internal hackathon will cost the company hundreds or thousands of dollars. Online hackathons require significantly less overhead. The majority of your investment will most likely be in software, digital infrastructure, and equipment, but as a remote-friendly business, you may already have many of these tools.
Working from home allows each attendee to customize the conditions and create an optimal work environment.
Buster can turn up the heat to 80 degrees Fahrenheit and brainstorm in a sauna, whereas Lucille can crank up the air conditioner and brainstorm in an ice storm. While Maeby blasts Finnish death metal, George Michael may enter a soundproof room with noise-canceling earbuds.
Participants can even work in their underwear without bothering the other guests. Participants benefit from fewer distractions when working from home, which leads to increased productivity and better sleep.
Because virtual events require no travel time or expenses, you may be able to attract a more diverse crowd to your online hackathon.
Because the internet is the venue, teams from all over the world can participate. You can also attract teams with limited resources because companies will only need to invest time rather than money for transportation.
Participation in a virtual hackathon has significant workplace applications. Teams collaborate remotely during digital hackathons.
Employees must delegate, communicate, demonstrate, and compromise while seated in front of a computer screen.
Employees will benefit from developing and mastering these team-building skills long after the event is over.
By challenging colleagues to collaborate from a distance in a time-sensitive environment, you prepare teams to work effectively from home. Computer-based collaboration will become second nature to your teams after the hackathon.
While not every hackathon requires a viable product or feature, tool, or the like, the winning team’s idea must contribute to something.
If it is not a solution to the problem, it must be a means to getting there.
One of the most important hackathon judging criteria for a hackathon is the originality of the idea. It does not have to be the next Microsoft, but it should be impressive.
Though online hackathons cannot replace in-person events, they do provide many appealing features that can enhance the experience.
Judging has always been the most difficult aspect for hackathon organizers. This is because, aside from recruiting and finalizing the judges and assigning a specific time for judging, organizing teams do not plan anything else, assuming everything can be managed on the day-of.
However, judging can be one of the easiest and smoothest aspects of any hackathon if properly planned.
Recognize the importance of the mental ability test and select a career that both interests you and has a high probability of success.
Mercer Mettl is a web-based testing system that offers basic aptitude tests that require minimal preparation. An aptitude test can be given prior to an interview or online in the comfort of your own home.
A career aptitude test ensures that you keep developing and growing in your chosen field.