Ingenico Retail Enterprise organized a new internal hackathon in our Paris head office last week. For two days, this very successful event gathered Ingenico employees from Spain, Tunisia, the Netherlands and France with both business and technology backgrounds.
Four project champions – selected out of the more than fourteen who had pitched their ideas for a solution related to a strategic initiative or high-performing segment – had received expression of interest from colleagues across Europe and formed their multicultural and multilingual team.
The four shortlisted projects focused on fraud detection based on machine learning, terminal screen UX for the illiterate and the visually impaired, tokenization of card data in OTA messages, and dematerialized acceptance of QR code wallets.
Paula Felstead, CTO at Ingenico Group, and Pierre Salignat, VP Technology at Enterprise Retail and initiator of the first Retail hackathon, look back on two very intense days.
Describing the aims and objectives of the event, Pierre Salignat says, ‘we know from experience that innovation is not the concern of a limited circle of people but that those working on products and solutions on a daily basis, especially in technology, have ideas about ways to improve our offer. So the main purpose of the Retail hackathon was to let new ideas for payment-related solutions arise from our teams, whatever the department. And we had abundance of these, which is very encouraging.’
Pierre Salignat adds, ‘Another objective of the hackathon was to provide an opportunity for Ingenico employees to break with their usual environment and collaborate with colleagues they are not used to working with. The level of collaboration and engagement we have witnessed exceeded our expectations. The winning team, for instance, comprised colleagues from several business lines, departments and countries including Tunisia, France and the Netherlands. Moreover, all participants demonstrated passion. This was a great success in this respect as well.’
‘The next step for the winning team is to present their fraud detection solution to several entities, which have shown an interest. Overall all shortlisted solutions could be developed in the short- or medium-term.’ Pierre observes.
And Paula Felstead concludes, ‘I was really impressed with the spirit and commitment shown by everyone and I know that everyone who went through the demos was impressed by the calibre and capability shown by each team. I really want to thank everyone who took part, particularly the judges who had a difficult task to pick a winning concept.’
Building on this success, the Retail hackathon will become a biannual event.