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Hackaton 2024

7 minutes


At Essent we are thrilled to share the success of our recent hackathon event, Watt-a-Hack. This annual event has become a highlight for our company, fostering innovation, collaboration, and a lot of fun. 


The excitement was palpable from the very beginning. We kicked off the event with a group selfie, capturing the enthusiasm and energy of everyone involved. The lobby of G4 was transformed into a gaming paradise, complete with two arcade games, a Formula 1 driving arcade game, and a ping pong table in the coffee corner, which served as the organizers' home base. This vibrant setup created a relaxed and fun atmosphere, especially during lunch. 

As soon as the hackathon began, our teams dove straight into their projects. The energy in the room was electric as participants brainstormed and coded away. The evening brought a delicious dinner of Indian cuisine, which was followed by a thrilling laser game session in the parking area, complete with obstacles. This was undoubtedly one of the event's highlights, providing a perfect break from the intense work and a chance to bond. 


Some of our dedicated hackers stayed overnight, vying for the "Coders Last Standing" award. These hardcore participants, energized by tabletop games and late-night snacks, showcased their passion and commitment to their projects. 

Day 2 began with a quick breakfast before it was time for the demos. The presentations were nothing short of inspiring, with teams showcasing a wide array of innovative solutions. From AI and chatbots to architecture, CMS-tools, booking and location tools, and photo-to-text technology, the creativity on display was astounding. 

The event concluded with the announcement of the winners. Team RAGgedy Arch took home the top trophy, earning the most votes from participants. Directly from the winners themselves: “A picture is worth a thousand words, especially architecture pictures 😉
The RAGgedy Arch team created a chatbot - the digital twin of an architect who can answer questions about architecture pictures.”

The joy and satisfaction among the teams were evident, and the entire event was a testament to our company's commitment to fostering innovation and creativity.  

From left to right they are: Theo Gerrits, Jasper van Leeuwen (team captain), Laurens Koppenol & Mark-Danney Oonk 
The voting was completely done by the engineers and based on 4 categories: sustainability, technicalness, presentation and fun. Their presentation was comical and well done and they had a pretty technical subject, so they got the highest vote scores. 

Rutger van der Huizen, one of our organizers and participants, shared his thoughts on the event: 

"Hackathon started with most teams already having an idea of what they wanted to achieve, while others figured it out along the way. The freedom in topic choice made it easy to focus on improvements that matter to us. I was really surprised by the results; all teams tackled issues that affect us or our customers. The energizers were great, especially the arcade machines. It was fantastic to see even non-participants enjoying them. The laser gaming in the parking garage was awesome, and the added obstacles created a competitive atmosphere. Overall, we achieved cool results, and many participants are already looking forward to the next hackathon." 

Watt-a-Hack was a resounding success, fully funded by the company as a testament to our dedication to employee growth and development. I am proud to be part of a company that values and invests in its people. Here's to more innovation and collaboration in the future! 

Thank you to everyone who participated and made this event memorable. 
 We can't wait for the next edition! 
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