One of the cool things about our unique culture at here Xero is that we like to do thing’s a little differently. So a couple of times a year globally, teams in our offices throughout the globe drop what they are doing for 2 days, and give the Xplore Hackathon all that they’ve got.
For the third year in a row Xplore, a 2-day event, will take place this morning. It’s aim is to get our developers exploring new ideas, experimenting and unleashing their creativity. Unfortunately more often than not their ideas have ended up in a “don’t have time for” bucket, Xplore is the time for them to dive back into the bucket and make those ideas a reality.
Who will see the results
Concepts that are produced from Xplore go on to be used both internally and externally. Sushi Train and the Hey Xero bot were both born out of hackathons. Sushi Train is our internal product planning tool, it was created to provide an overview of the upcoming pipeline for individual product teams. Hey Xero is our Facebook Chatbot which is being released in November, it will allow Xero users the flexibility to instantly chat with Xero through Facebook Messenger to gain quick and accurate information about their own account.
How it works
This year the event is taking place in our offices in Auckland, Canberra, Denver, Melbourne, New York, San Francisco and Wellington, but those working remotely won’t miss out, as they are able to dial in and work within a team from one of those six offices.
Teams began forming as early as 15th September and last Tuesday they were required to have submitted their ideas. This is so that we could gather all the resources they will need in time for today.
They have been presenting their idea in pitch-style presentations, right up until this morning. At 10am the gong sounds, and they will begin creating and building! Some teams choose to work throughout the night, in which case they will be powered by pizza, and by midday Friday the competitors will break for lunch and begin preparing their presentations.
When will the winners be revealed
Firstly local judging will take place, which will amount to an Overall Winner and People’s Choice, as well local prizes for example, Heroic Failure, Most Diverse and Best Dressed. Followed by local prize-givings held in each office. Then the local People’s Choice and Judge’s Choice will be taken to the Global judging team who will pick a Global Winner.
We can’t wait to see all the creative ideas that evolve over the next two days!