The field of information technology is evolving at a faster rate than usual. Areas like artificial intelligence, data science, data analytics and internet of things, among others, are now being integrated with industries across all sectors. Many times, it becomes difficult to keep track of these technologies and keep up.
Now, more than ever, we are seeing a pattern where young professionals wanting more challenging jobs and more interesting work, especially in the Emerging Tech sector. And hackathons have turned out to be a very valuable source of answer to both employees as well as employers.
This month, Analytics India Magazine decided to find out how employers and big organisations are using this nifty platform called hackathons to get in touch with the talented people who can be absorbed into the company, and people who can solve unique problems.
About The Study
The samples were collected by asking respondents to fill in a survey created by AIM about what employees, as well as employers, thought about hackathons as a tool for hiring as well collaborate productively for different projects. This included various sub-topics such as growth opportunity in the current organisation, collaborative spirit of hackathons and the rate of success for both the parties.
We took opinions from young Indian professionals as well as senior employers to get a thorough idea of the working environment in this growing field. Our survey was met with much enthusiasm — and we got some great insights from it. Some of them were expected, and many of them were real eye-openers.
Has your organisation ever conducted a hackathon?
How frequently does your company conduct hackathons?
Our core demographic for the survey had a very clear answer to the above question. 44% of the respondents said that their organisations conducted hackathons only once a year.
Why do you think your organisation conducts hackathons?
Interestingly, we found out that a majority or 32% of the organisations use hackathons as a great way to crowdsource solutions for problems.
- We also found out that 16% of the organisations conducting hackathons use it for hiring.
- 16% use it for organisational branding both in and out of the campus.
How reliable are hackathons for assessing baseline skills in candidates and potential employees?
Who do you usually prefer conducting hackathons with?
For this question, we found out that most of our respondents, 40%, preferred to collaborate with external agencies to get the most out of their hackathons.
What kind of hackathons do you prefer?
When asked what kind of format the organisations of the employers preferred to conduct the hackathon, a majority, 56% of them replied with fact that they preferred with the hybrid format, which is a mix of online and offline format.
Among the following, what do you find most disagreeable about hackathons?
Which one do you think hackathons should focus more on?
When asked about the focus of the hackathons the organisations as well the participants responded with:
- 44% of the people said that developing realistic working prototypes and solutions for the challenges presented was crucial.
- 28% of the respondents said that hackathons should focus on inspiring participants to consider the “art of the possible,” to think up and imagine futuristic forward-thinking solutions with technologies that are not available or haven’t been created.
- 28% of the respondents said that they should focus on creating an atmosphere where people with different skill sets can brainstorm together and learn about a problem/challenge.
What challenges have you/your company faced while conducting a hackathon?
- 36% of the respondents said that one of the key challenges they faced during a hackathon was about curation of the problem statement and dataset.
- 24% of the respondents said that awareness of the ongoing event was a huge challenge.
Do you want your organisation to conduct a machine learning hackathon?
Hackathons have been in vogue for quite some time in the tech world to source innovative ideas. Many employers have also used this medium to brand themselves well with their prospective employees. For the participants, hackathons address one or many of these motivations – prize money, bragging rights, learning opportunities and/or hires. Quite often the hiring as a motive is understated in many hackathons. So when we finally the crucial question, 84% respondents replied with a resounding yes.
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Prajakta is a Writer/Editor/Social Media diva. Lover of all that is 'quaint', her favourite things include dogs, Starbucks, butter popcorn, Jane Austen novels and neo-noir films. She has previously worked for HuffPost, CNN IBN, The Indian Express and Bose. You can reach her at email@example.com