In the spirit of collaboration, Noblis employees and interns came together for a Hackathon entitled, “All Systems Go.” The event was led by the Systems Engineering Center of Excellence (SECoE), and was centered around two challenges: “Predicting Federal Government Adoption of Next Generation Technologies” and “Machine Learning.”
The purpose of the Hackathon was to challenge employees and interns to solve complex problems with their colleagues who work serve different missions, and work in different disciplines and offices. In fact, live streaming was put in place so that all employees, regardless of physical location, could truly join in on the innovation sessions.
“When planning this event, we wanted to give participants the opportunity to focus on the challenges and deliver tangible results,” said Girija Mehta, SECoE Lead. “The participants had real-life problems to work on, with clearly defined success metrics, so it was a great chance for analytical thinkers to come together and demonstrate their problem-solving prowess. Not everyone was an engineer, and in fact, our grand prize winner was a group of individuals who work in different parts of Noblis and had no experience in the subject matter of the problem. In fact, they hadn’t met each other before the Hackathon.”
Unwavering focus on our clients and their missions is part of the corporate culture at Noblis, and this Hackathon was no different—each team had to demonstrate how client missions could clearly benefit from their proposed solution. Moreover, the chosen grand prize winners had to demonstrate a solution that was 98-99% accurate and implementable.
Another major success of this Hackathon, according to SECoE Lead, Girija Mehta, was the fact that participants were able to choose their challenge.
“The two problems gave participants the chance to utilize their individual skillset and choose an approach they were comfortable with,” she said. “This just illustrates the uniqueness of Noblis. We are not confined to a single expertise area. We are thought-leaders and will solve problems, period.”
The outcomes of this Hackathon are crucial to the mission of Noblis. It’s essential to the company’s success to further cross-functional work across the organization, in support of our clients. Braxton Lewis, member of the SECoE leadership team, emphasized how this kind of event can bring different disciplines together. According to Lewis, connections made outside of every day work can make individuals think outside the box, and ideally, help solve more problems in new ways. He also explained that Hackathons aren’t just for engineers – individuals with many different backgrounds can contribute and that’s why these kinds of events can help further develop employees and help shape their passions.