The afterparty. Build partnerships on top of the hack results. After approx. 30 hours of collaboration and coding, results are still very early stage. How to embed results and maintain commitment, is crucial. Read more on how and why to do this.
The pressure cooker hackathon format is excellent in delivering tangible results, but they will be very early stage: first prototypes, rough sketches, promises of creative new uses of technology or data. These results should not die slow deaths after the hackathon due to lack of a post hackathon strategy and capacity. Participants, partners, sponsors: everyone will be disappointed in the end if they are left with a raw semi solutions.
In the post hackathon stage you build partnerships on top of hackathon outcomes. There are multiple options to organise this:
The organisers and partners should reserve some capacity for follow-up assistance to hackathon teams
(Significant) prize money is always a good way to allow teams to autonomously continue their work
Committed challengers should plan to embed any of the outcomes and the corresponding teams
Hackathon organisers can help teams with access to finance through connections with accelerators or incubators
Keeping the team together-maybe even replacing 1 or 2 teammates who are not committed for the long term.
Importance of a dedicated event
In the problem phase we talked about the importance of not doing stand-alone events, but to try and make your hackathons part of ongoing processes, commitment, interest and partners. The importance of the design principle is especially tangible in the post hackathon - partnership building phase. By evaluating what is already happening in existing ecosystems, and seeing how you can add something to it, increases your chances to embed the outcomes of your event. The hackathon results, which should be sweet little tangible deliverables, can be plugged back into the ecosystem to benefit from.
Our FarmHacks often end with strong commitments by government institutions, NGOs, farmers associations, large agri software companies, and interesting new partnerships that allow teams to keep working on their prototypes.
After all the hackathon energy frenzy you will have the following proceedings detailed in the image below. The left explains the technical-type proceedings, the right side the soft-type of proceedings - that are just as important to drive innovations forward.