Online Hackathon

An online hackathon is an event where different teams are working on solving certain case studies within a limited amount of time. As its name suggests, this concept has its origins within the field of IT where developers were challenged to hack. However, online hackathons nowadays can be organised for a broader audience such as for example a creative hackathon for designers or marketeers.

Whether you want to organize this hackathon online or hybrid, Thola is here for you! Continue reading to discover our best practices for organising a flawless online hackathon.

Give clear instructions

Before your teams can get started on their challenge, they need to receive straightforward guidelines. In the first place we recommend you to inform all the teams on a general level about the concept, the agenda, the deadlines and possible prices to win. Once that has been done, each organisation should brief their assigned teams about their specific challenge. What is expected? What are the requirements?
On what will be judged? Both general and challenge related instructions can be integrated in Thola in different ways:

Online hackathon - live show
Live show

Start your hackathon with an entertaining live show in which the host explains the concept , instructions and prices. The host will be presenting this show from a studio which will be broadcasted into the Thola platform. To increase engagement with the audience, we can include a live Q&A chatbox. In case you prefer to organise this live show via video conferencing, you can also host this via Microsoft Teams or other communication platforms such as Google Meet or Zoom.

Online hackathon - pre recorded
Pre-recorded videos

Another option is to record your instructions beforehand and to integrate these videos into the Thola platform. By choosing this option, you have plenty of time to prepare and won’t need to be dealing with the stress of a live performance.

Online hackathon - documentation

Whether you choose for a live show or pre-recorded video to brief your teams, we strongly advice you to create a briefing document or presentation that your attendees can consult at any time. Thola supports all kinds of formats such as PDF, PPT, PNG, JPEG etc.

Communication is key

During this online hackathon, it’s essential that the coaches and hackers can easily communicate with each other.
To ensure smooth communication, Thola provides several networking features:

Online team building - networking
Easy and fast connection

At all times, attendees can get in contact with each other and with the coaches by sending chat messages, launching one-to-one calls or scheduling meetings. Next to that, we can also set up calls on a group level so that coaches can easily inform their teams. These group calls can also be used for the team members to communicate with each other and allows the coach to jump in those calls at any time. 

A good story line and a custom design

It’s all about the details!
Take the event experience of your online hackathon to the next level by working with a theme and a unique design. 

Online hackathon - custom design
Storytelling and design

Besides a well thought out challenge, a good story line also contributes to the success of your online hackathon. Once you have come up with a good theme and story, this story telling should be reflected in all aspects of your event. You can start by including this theme in your live show and instruction videos. However, what will really take your event experience to the next level is a custom design that is fully branded in your theme. Whether you want to have a space, murder mystery or a Las Vegas look and feel, everything is possible! 

Our references

Thinking about organising your own online hackathon but still looking for more inspiration?
View these references below of clients who have already hosted one on Thola! 

Book a private demo

Are you interested in getting to know Thola? Register here for a free one-to-one demonstration.

During this interactive demo we will give you a tour of the platform, showcase our features and give you some inspiration on how to use Thola for your hybrid or virtual events. Ofcourse we will also take time to answer any question you might have about the platform and its functionalities.