In the world of tech, especially in the fintech space, innovation is key to improving a company’s value proposition. However, there is also a need to deliver projects on time and keep up with market demands. This can mean less time for organic innovation, with innovation becoming the responsibility of a specialist team (R&D) or a top-down request.
At Demica, we believe in the powerful mix of collective intelligence and organic innovation to constantly improve our technology, and at the end of 2021 we put this into practice by running our own internal hackathon.
At Demica, we have a global team, which creates a logistical challenge to have an effective, in-person hackathon. Our approach was to let people pitch their ideas and design their approach to collaborate across different regions. At the same time the management team provided the tools, software and licenses needed by the different teams.
The Hackathon teams included people across the business, as well as the tech team. This approach demystified the work done by the tech team and helped highlight the challenges faced when choosing tools or identifying a client’s requirements. It also helped the tech team learn of the day-to-day challenges faced by their colleagues in different functions.
Our teams came up with proposals that covered blockchain technologies that captured invoice processing information, high performing mini-microservices and serverless technologies deployed directly on the cluster, which removed the need for a cloud provider solution, as well as integrating the latest trends to improve performance and asynchronous observability.
We had an incredible experience this year. The teams were highly engaged and for the first time, were able to create fully working prototypes at the end of the activity.
Everybody faced many challenges in the past two years: the pandemic, realigning technology to support remote working, delegation becoming a necessity, and economic uncertainty, among many. In such a challenging environment, we forgot how enriching and recharging activities like Hackathons are.
Many of the ideas that came out of the Hackathon are now full development projects on our Platform, allowing us to bring the latest trends into our software development process. But we continue to learn: how hackathons are not only activities for tech people to try new technologies, but also ways to improve communication and knowledge sharing across multidisciplinary teams. We are now aiming to expand our hackathons to bring partners from our client base to enrich the experience.