Last Friday night, amid an unlimited flow of coffee, tea, energy drinks, beer, rolls, cookies and pizza, a group of people got together, yelled at each other, talked, laughed away the stress, and continued the excitement well into the wee hours of the following day.
Except that this wasn’t a normal Friday night out…
This was the first-ever Hackathon, organised at the nearbuy office!
Six teams, each comprising 6–7 members from the Engineering, Product and Design departments got together to build something.
Team 1: Targaryans
Team 2: 6th sense
Team 3: Zero Bata Sannata
Team 4: Underdogs
Team 5: Question Mark
Team 6: WIP
“The idea was for teams to get together, brainstorm and come up with great and doable ideas,” said Neha Mantoo, senior manager, HR, adding, “The Hackathon turned out to be an extraordinary event filled with infectious energy, boundless ideas and an enviable collaboration.”
However, the spirit began to fizzle out as grogginess set in once the clock struck 12am.
But no one gave up!
A virtual spectator of the action, nearbuy CEO Ankur Warikoo said, “Despite not being physically present, I could still sense the energy, vibe and enthusiasm of all the teams out there. No management, no supervision, one broad problem statement and just one goal — to create something meaningful and to create it fast, and that’s exactly what they did.”
And The Winners…
Eighteen gruelling hours later, Team Zero Bata Sannata, led by Shailendra Jha, product manager at nearbuy, won the Hackathon!
To build a merchant suite of products containing table and reservation management.
Referring to the team’s idea, Shailendra said, “Local commerce is completely offline — merchants manage all their inventories offline. Very few of them digitise things, hence no one can access it online. We decided that being the industry leader, nearbuy had to take the next step. We decided to come up with a merchant suite of products to help them come online.”
This landed the team a cheque of Rs 60,000, and an award for perfect execution of the idea.
Talking about the team’s win, Shailendra said, “In this case, everyone sat together-Designers, product managers, engineers etc, hence the chances of going wrong were very slim. There was also the pressure of a deadline, so we broke tasks into smaller chunks and conducted regular checks, which helped achieve our ultimate goal.”
And Then There Were Other Awards
Team Question Mark won for coming up with the most innovative idea.
Team Targaryans won for coming up with an idea most relevant to nearbuy.
As nearbuy cofounder, Ravi Shankar, summarised it, “The buzz around was unbelievable. Each of the teams focused on solving relevant business problems ranging from customer experiences to merchant scenarios. The fact that all of them could zero in on a relevant business problem, conceptualize a solution & finish creating a product in one night was awe-inspiring. It felt like being back in college where we used to pull in all-nighters for exams the following day, only this was way more fun & cool!”
In the end, three teams won, but everyone went home happy.
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