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Talent Assessment | 2 Min Read

How are Brands Attracting Millennials with Hackathons?

Hiring hackathons for Millennials

If you think hackathons are only for people in the IT industry, you need to reboot your brains and take in some new info. Hackathons are more than a meeting of technical minds. Today, the hackathon has replaced the old method of campus hiring by way of an event where creative and like-minded people come together as a group and work on projects together.

So, how does this make hackathons special? The specialty of this event is that employers get a live demonstration of how the participants act in a virtual workplace similar to theirs while also gauging their patience and skills under work pressure. Alternatively, participants as well, get a taste of the type of work they would be doing in the future. This gives participants the option of making a calculated decision of whether they want to join the workplace or not.

Facebook, an international brand name, too uses hackathons as a part of the campus recruitment process, where he places a challenge in front of self-selected teams to come up with solutions to real technical problems. During this process, Mark Zuckerberg himself takes upon himself the role of chief recruiter, inspiring the participants in their quests. Once the candidates are chosen, they are taken to “Camp Hackathon” where the winners are announced and given cash prizes or an offer of a summer internship with the company.

To add-on to the process of traditional hackathons, Facebook added a “project mayhem” event to its events, which are longer 27-hour sessions that begin at 11 in the morning until 2 p.m the next day.


At their current stage in life, Millennials think about their job role as a stepping stone and an opportunity for growth. But, other than that, they also want to feel deeply committed to their role. Hence, they are on the lookout for a manager who would be ready to invest in their development. In short, Millennials place a greater emphasis on opportunities to learn and grow, which is exactly what hackathons give them.

If your brand wants to do a better job of retaining Millennials, you must understand what motivates them, and create a delicate balance. Even though millennials have a different mindset when it comes to recruitment and retention, yet they largely want the same things from their employers as most other generations. When organizations can provide these attributes, they can keep their Millennial employees from continually searching and pursuing the next best thing elsewhere.

Hackathons are interactive platforms where participants and brand managers mingle together to create something new. If they both click during this stage and do not feel intimidated by one another, both know they have found what they are looking for.

Sliding CTA_6 Tips to Successfully Conduct Your Hackathon

Originally published March 23 2018, Updated June 16 2020


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