A blending of the words “hack” and “marathon,” a hackathon is a creative approach many tech companies use to empower their development and product teams to innovate. A hackathon gives teams a chance to step away from their day-to-day projects and dedicate time to solving problems they really feel passionate about with others motivated to do the same thing.

“This is our second hackathon at OnDeck,” said Pamela Rice, SVP of Technology at OnDeck. “Our first was last June which launched many working innovations including customer cash flow insights, internal message boards, and dynamic maps of our customer locations.”

At the end of a hackathon, the teams publicly demonstrate their completed projects to each other and everyone in the company interested in the innovations. Hackathons often share a common them and there is often an element of competition among teams to see which group will produce the innovation with the greatest potential impact to the organization.

“My goal is to create a forum that enables people to think outside the box,” said Rice. “We want to facilitate an environment where they can use their passion, innovative spirit, and ability to collaborate in ways that translate into working ideas that enable OnDeck to continue to disrupt the small business lending landscape.”

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