Last week, we held our bi-annual Hackathon here at Paperless Parts. The hackathon is an incredible opportunity for our organization’s talented software engineers to show off their skills and collaborate to expand those skills and improve our product.
What is the Hackathon?
The Paperless Parts Hackathon is an opportunity for our engineers to learn and experiment with new technologies, create proof of concept for new features, or level up a process or pain point felt by the team internally. With so many opportunities for innovation, there’s endless room for creativity.
How it Works
Over a period of two days, individuals are grouped into teams to collaborate on the rapid development of prototypes and proof of concepts. At the end of day 2, each team presents their ideas to the entire organization, including a panel of judges.
This year’s judges were Paperless Parts Co-founder & CEO Jason Ray, Co-founder & CTO Scott Sawyer, and VP of Sales Max Tipton. Together they award a Grand Prize winner, which is followed by a vote put to the entire company for a People’s Choice award.
VP of Sales Max Tipton (left), CEO & Co-founder Jason Ray (center), and Director of Computational Geometry Darcy Parker (right) watching final presentations.
Highlights from the Event
Engineering Manager William Headrick took the lead on organizing this hackathon: “It was an awesome time where the team was able to focus on projects and initiatives that individual engineers were passionate about,” says Headrick. “What was really incredible about this one was how well the projects aligned with the needs of our customers, which shows how much room there is for innovation in the manufacturing space and how well our company does keeping the entire organization aligned on our goals. I would not be surprised if some of the projects prototyped during this hackathon turn into Paperless Parts patents in a few years.”
Prototyped ideas ranged anywhere from revamping internal environments, to adding features to the platform that would help customers with adjacent work. Here were the teams whose ideas won over the hearts of both the judges and spectators:
Grand Prize Winners
Alex Baietto, Tom Charron, William Headrick, and Nicola Protic
People’s Choice Award Winners (a tie!)
Team 1: Rob Carrington, Nirav Ilango, Ben Horgan, and John Peck
Team 2: Matt Gothard, Lindsay Richter, Alex Taxiera, Kelli Therrian, and Monika Wilson
People’s Choice award winning teammates Kelli, Lindsay, Alex, Matt, and Monika collaborating before the final presentation.
Product Manager Dana Wensberg was a spectator at this hackathon, and insists that it was the best one yet. To Wensberg, “a hackathon is perhaps the most force-multiplying event for a team of engineers. It’s fun, builds team culture, encourages people to broaden their horizons, yields impactful technology, and most importantly, allows engineers to experience all aspects of the product development lifecycle.”
Product Manager Dana Wensberg watching final presentations.
From ideation, to building the business case, to designing the solution, to writing the code, to giving the demo and sales pitch, engineers are driving the bus at the Paperless Parts Hackathon. It inspires customer empathy and drives a stronger understanding of what it takes to bring a product to market.
If you’re looking to join in on the fun at our next hackathon, apply to one of our many open roles today! Visit our Careers page to learn more about our team values and view all positions in the Engineering department.
Group photo of all participants of the Spring 2022 Paperless Parts Hackathon.
Think you’ve got what it takes to win our next hackathon?