How To Ace A Hackathon!

The key to winning lies in strategizing

Be smart about team selection, Plan your every move; Prioritize and Create a mind-blowing presentation!

By HIBA KHAN

Every hackathon epitomizes innovation! While applying for one can be a slightly nerve-wrecking process, the key to winning it lies in strategizing and having an inventive and pro-active approach.

If you are thinking of participating in a hackathon, here’s all you need to know to bring home the coveted first prize.

Be Smart About Team Selection

Whether you are participating in a coding or non-coding hackathon, it is important to get together a team that possesses a varied skill set. Choose members based on their forte and don’t forget to assign positions to each member so they know what role to carry out.

The top skills you should be looking for are technical expertise, organizational skills, business development abilities and impressive presentation skills.

Additionally, ensure that the member of your team is compatible and good at communicating effectively.

Plan Your Every Move

Most hackathons have a theme and set of rules. Make sure you fully understand what the theme, purpose and rules entail. Take out time to understand the evaluation criteria, the type of deliverables needed and basic requirements.

If possible, dig in to the profiles of the judges to find out their backgrounds. Are they business development executives, engineers, investors, company representatives? Knowing your audience will allow you to impress them better.

“Having a team that interacts with eachother is key, understand each persons role  thoroughly, spend time on the importance of why?, dig deep into the purpose of the challenge and how your product or service will genuinely make a difference to peoples lives. Remember a success solution is not based on the Out Put it is based on the Out Come. Finally make sure your team are all on the same page when you go to present – it is critical that you allocate time for this otherwise all that hard work will crash and burn at the last hurdle!” Sarah Landry, Managing Director

Prioritize

A hackathon will judge your time management skills like no other challenge can. Focus your time and energy in to creating a clear product vision and coming up with the integral steps needed to build it. Additionally, run a quick rehearsal of your demo before you go on to present it.

Create A Mind-Blowing Presentation

Finally, it all comes down to presentation! The best way to give an impressive presentation is to engage with the audience, demonstrate your enthusiasm for the product and be uber confident.

Here’s a simple format to base your presentation on:

  • Situation
  • Problem
  • Implication
  • Need Analysis (Solution)
  • Target Market
  • Product Demo
  • Business Model
  • Future Rollout

Prepare to think on your feet as you will be met with questions at the end of your speech.

Strategic planning and a stellar team will help you successfully pave your way in every challenge.

Now that you know how to hack your way to a win, check out our hackathons page and get involved!

How Hackathons Are Driving Innovation

Hackathons Are Becoming The Norm

How exactly do firms benefit by hosting internal hackathons for their teams at office?

By HIBA KHAN

Re-invention is key for any business. Adopting internal hackathons as normal business practice should now become a norm by companies as it fosters innovation, solves problems quicker and gives employees a chance to come forward with their unique ideas in a short time frame. As well as attracting new talent,they are also great for rekindling interest in unmotivated employees by giving them a sense of responsibility and purpose.

How exactly do firms benefit by hosting internal hackathons for their teams at office? Lets have a look;

Time pressure leads to fast solutions

The fact that employees have a limited amount of time to produce a prototype or solution forces them to adopt the opposite mindset. Instead of working at their own pace or when they feel they have time after priority tasks; they are forced to collaborate with a team to perfect an idea and prove its viability.

No failures, only lessons

Hackathons are a good reminder that failure is a good thing. When people experiment with a team on new ideas, they are likely to venture into interesting places and if they fail, they fail together and learn how to be better.

They are also a wonderful way to boost employee morale. There’s nothing like exploring a new project for hours together, uninterrupted to bond teammates with one another.

Reinforcing the right values

Working hard, working fast, working tirelessly, working intensely and working with your team. What entrepreneur or leader wouldn’t want their employees to embrace these values? It’s amazing for everyone to see how much can actually get done when there are no meetings, no phone calls, and no disruptions- just people working together towards a common goal.

For all businesses, hackathons can make the bottom-line difference between staying static and developing something that could transform the future.

Are you ready to host your first internal hackathon?

Contact us today and find out how we can help you pull off a super successful event.

Why Every Organisation Should Be Hosting Hackathons

Inject Your Organisation with Innovation

Are you ready to host a hackathon and boost innovation in your company?

By HIBA KHAN

The popularity of hackathons has risen dramatically in recent times. An estimate shows that in 2016, hackathons resulted in a staggering 13000+ prototypes while over 80% of the Fortune 100 companies regularly conduct hackathons.

Despite the rising fame of hackathons, there are still many misconceptions that exist about the whole concept.

Perhaps the most widespread is that hackathons are only beneficial for startups and coders. In reality, hackathons are most effective in speeding up the digitization of businesses. Additionally, they inject an organization with innovation and create better solutions for an array of business problems.

It is absolutely essential for any business to maintain competitiveness and have strong technical teams. However, finding the right employees can be challenging. That’s where hackathons come in. A well-organized hackathon works like a magic spell that gets the most talented and creative minds together to brainstorm and deliver a diverse set of quality ideas. Not only does this shorten a company’s innovative cycle, costs less compared to traditional innovation models and moves ideas to prototypes quickly; they also help employers seek and recruit from a pool of exceptional candidates.

Internal hackathons are also extremely effective in encouraging existing employees to push their creative boundaries and create the next best product. 

Contact us for hosting a hassle-free event on your behalf that will not only add to your brand value but also get you in direct contact with some of the best minds in the industry.

2019 – Talent Hack Opens Door To Students And Graduates

2019 Internship Opportunities

Registrations are now open for Talent Hack’s 2019 Academia Project.

By HIBA KHAN

An internship at Talent Hack is an excellent way to know the inner workings of a dynamic workplace. Immerse yourself in challenging hackathons as well as new technologies to help you decide which career path is right for you.

Lasting typically 8-10 weeks, your time at Talent Hack will see you having a full day-to-day involvement in actual projects selected to match your interests and abilities. You will join a project team and work alongside TH’s employees who are all professionals in their fields.

To ensure that you will get the most from the experience, a mentor will support you directly while you undertake regular assessments throughout your internship. Their perspectives will contribute to your understanding of the business, and its demands and rewards.

Talent Hack’s Academia Project at a glance:

  • Typically, 8-10 weeks in your chosen business area
  • A real project with a significant level of business impact
  • Discovering which skills you need to develop through constructive feedback
  • Building valuable networks and contacts for future career opportunities

Mentoring and Coaching

You will be allocated a mentor who will provide you with day-to-day guidance and support and acts as a sounding board.

Mid Internship Review

To keep you on track; you will attend a meeting with our Managing Director. The purpose of this meeting is to express your honest feedback as to how you feel your internship is progressing. This will also be an opportunity to review whether you are on target to meet your key objectives set at the start of the project. 

Internship Outcome

If the overall evaluation of your internship meets our minimum employment standards and if you have enjoyed your time with us, we will seek to identify a suitable position on our graduate scheme for you.

“Having gone through our Academia Project myself, I couldn’t recommend it highly enough. I have learnt so much since joining and my career rapidly progressed. I don’t think that I would have had this opportunity elsewhere” Anna Bagley, TH Business Development Manager

We’re looking for talented graduates with a 2:1 degree or a minimum of a 2:2 degree supported by other relevant academic achievements or work experience. And, because we work in almost every sector and across most technologies, it’s essential you’re flexible, adaptable and imaginative, sharing our passion for new approaches.

If that sounds like you, apply today! Registrations close March 1st.

2018 – Promoting the Inclusion of Girls in STEM Careers

Stemettes

Inspiring and supporting young women into Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths careers (STEM).

By HIBA KHAN

The Talent Hack team attended an inspiring event conducted by Stemettes – an award-winning social enterprise working to inspire and support young women into Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths careers (STEM).

Stemettes teamed up with Schroders to host a unique and exciting event where the next generation of girls and young #WomenInSTEM created their own app on Savings and Investing. The judging panel comprised of representatives from Microsoft & FinTech Talents.

“Watching a group of talented young girls putting their creative hats on and using tech tools in action was quite a fascinating experience. I saw group after group confidently make presentations in a room full of people and were truly impressed.” Sarah Landry, Managing Director

The thought that had gone into each app demonstrated that children as young as 5 could grasp the link between savings and incentives and, even the importance of the customer journey.

Looking across both the technology and financial services industries, the lack of women representation we’ve notice over the years hasn’t changed significantly.

Programmes like those run by the Stemettes point to a brighter future and highlight the importance of engaging young girls and women with the industry through challenge-based events. This isn’t tech for tech’s sake but purpose-driven tasks that really demonstrate the intersection between tech and design and the creativity that is part of that process.

In order to meet the future demand of tech talent, it is essential to tap in to the potential of all groups in society. Events like these are a fantastic way to engage future innovators and nurture their talent at a young age.

Talent Hack looks forward to actively work toward the inclusion of women in STEM-related activities and broaden the opportunities for all women in the industry so that they can be proportionally represented in the field.

www.stemettes.org

2017 – Attracting and Recruiting World Class Talent

Istanbul Sehir University

Expanding our workshops and training program to international students

By HIBA KHAN

Having built upon our first Partnership Project originally introduced in 2015, we extended our Academia Project and Graduate Scheme to an international market in 2017.

Our aim is to exemplify our commitment to premier international talent acquisition by recruiting graduates from across the globe and leverage their experience to benefit both personal and professional growth.

Under a new partnership with Istanbul Sehir University in Turkey and through Erasmus Plus – a European Union student exchange programme, we had the pleasure to welcome new members to the team as International Trainee Consultants & Resourcers.

The trainee Consultants’ role was to develop and manage their own portfolio of clients and source the most suitable candidates within their allocated market.

“Our travel to Istanbul has certainly been enlightening. To see first hand how enthusiastic and eager the student were to learn about our business was fantastic, it was a very successful experience from all sides” Sarah Landry, Managing Director

The new members benefited from our formal training and on-the-job mentoring from our Senior Consultants with the view to grow within our business. Throughout their time with us, they were encouraged to gain further knowledge and develop a solid skillset.

Alumni members from our past Annual Internship Program and Graduate Scheme have greatly benefitted from working with us and have gone on to achieve a significant list of accomplishments and skills to add to their resume; setting them apart from other candidates in their field.

We would like to thank Istanbul Sehir University for their hospitality and look forward to our continued partnership along with welcoming new interns through Erasmus+.

2016 – CEO Launches Academia Project To Widen Opportunities For Young People

Enhancing Young Peoples Life Skills

Preparing Students for employment opportunities in the “Real World”.

By HIBA KHAN

The next step in furthering our CSR program is working directly with students across the UK from year 10 through to final year university graduates with the aim giving them a competitive advantage when applying for jobs in the “real world”.

After successfully piloting the scheme in 2015, we officially launched our Academia Project as of January 2016.

Rose Carter from Trust Careers commented; “Sarah and her team have been involved in our Trust Careers interview days since 2013. To have direct employers interviewing is an invaluable experience for students and for the company to actually build a curriculum around this is absolutely wonderful”

Students accepted onto the Academia Project will gain valuable business exposure, be shown how to build their own portfolio as well as network of contacts within their area of interest. We are also committed to give guidance and support to help them achieve their employ-ability goals.

Su Mortley, Chair of Maidstone schools and colleges CEIAG forum (On behalf of Kent County Council) says: “To have a number of our students included into the project is fantastic. I know some of the pupils personally and am looking forward to observing their progression”

On successful completion of the 12-week program, a select number of individuals from the South East through to the North East will progress onto our client graduate schemes.

Sarah Landry, Managing Director of DFGR and Talent Hack said; “This is a fantastic project, especially with the current status of the job / skills market for entry level requirements within our specific industry sector. To also have the support from GB Entrepreneur Awards as well as Trustee Careers only adds value to our Academia Project”

We as an organisation has already benefited from the insights and perspective that these young scholars have brought to the table. So much so, that we have implemented a number of their suggestions.

2015 – Committed To Our Corporate Social Responsibility

Student Workshops

New Internship Opportunity Welcomes Students from London & Kent

By HIBA KHAN

We are committed to our Corporate Social Responsibility and our ongoing efforts with Medway Youth Trust, Corporate Charity Golf events, Graduate Recruitment & Assessment Days and free employability workshops are a testament to our dedication toward creating a prosperous and successful community.

We are especially invested in giving students the opportunity to develop a strong network, increase their marketability and gain valuable experience and exposure. Not only does this help them hit the ground running when it comes to seeking a career post-graduation, it also boosts their confidence by having worked in a professional office environment.

With this aim in mind, in January 2015, we launched a Partnership Project aimed at 16-25 year old students.

“Being involved with the community especially for a cause that we believe very strongly in, is extremely satisfying. We will continue working with the education authorities and local charities to build upon this years success” Sarah Landry, Managing Director

Within 3 months of launching, we accepted 6 six students from Kent and 6 from London who completed the 12 week course with us. They gained valuable business exposure within their chosen industry sector, built their own network of contacts and developed a competitive advantage over others in the market place when it came to employability skills. 

Next year, we are going international! We are currently finalizing an Erasmus agreement with various European universities that will enable international students to join us in the UK under an Erasmus+ Internship program.

Our aim is to build a solid, future alumni by investing in today’s youth, supporting their career aspirations whilst studying, and offering them work placements if appropriate.