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Recap: GoCo’s 2021 DEI Hackathon!

A look at the innovative solutions, tools, and products that we built

by Nikhil Bendre

On May 6th and 7th at GoCo, we wrapped up our 2021 DEI Hackathon! This was such an incredible experience for our team, so we wanted to share the highlights with you. Hackathons provide a venue for self-expression and creativity through technology, and the theme of GoCo’s first Hackathon was DEI, which stands for Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion. 

With five teams consisting of in-house engineers, marketers, sales, customer success and more, we built some impactful tools to help our own customers, as well as any SMB, achieve their own missions of becoming more diverse, equitable, and inclusive. We were absolutely blown away by the skill, dedication, and creativity that was so evident in each team’s final product. We also invited a group of impactful HR thought leaders to judge and provide feedback on what we built. Let’s take a look at the innovative solutions that we came up with!

To kick things off, let’s start with our Hackathon Winner!

Team Geek

What They Came Up With: Antidote DEI: The modern cure for outdated, out-of-touch HR training programs.

As Millennials and Gen Z become an increasingly large part of the workforce, we are realizing that the old and tired HR training videos and programs often used by various companies simply aren’t cutting it. They’re impersonal and irrelevant and they basically just go through the motions. Antidote HR is a library of 18 (and counting) DEI lessons that are meant to be easily shareable and accessible. These original, made in-house lessons are available in a variety of formats, including slides that can be shared on social media and TikTok videos! 

Team Geek will donate $2,000 to Geeks Rule, a non-profit that works to eliminate racial, gender, and socioeconomic gaps in STEM by programming at underprivileged secondary schools. 

Next, we have our Runner-Up!

Team Werk Werk Werk Werk Floooooows

What They Came Up With: A workflow for anonymously whistleblowing/reporting misconduct in the workplace.



Our GoCo system contains a “Workflows” feature, that automates operations for us and makes certain processes run a lot smoother. This team created an addition to that feature for anonymously reporting misconduct. Their presentation was super informative, including statistics pertaining to sexual harassment and misogynistic micro-aggressions in the workplace, a skit about the issues at hand, and a detailed demonstration of their product solution.

Being an extension of a feature GoCo already offers, this solution adds a section onto our Workflows tab, called Anonymous Workflows. After creating one, you get a sharable and post-able link so that people can easily find it! Through this link, recipients can answer prompted questions and leave questions or comments of their own. In summation, this solution improves our organization by giving us actionable insights from within the company while also giving us the opportunity to solve internal issues with efficiency and confidentiality.

Team Werk Werk Werk Werk Floooooows will donate $1,000 to The Montrose Center, which offers resources for the LGBTQ+ community, such as counseling, youth/senior services, HIV/AIDS care, and anti-violence services. 

Finally, here are our Honorable Mentions!

Equality’s Little Helpers

What They Came Up With: A scoring system for companies to evaluate their handling and implementation of DEI elements.

As the workforce progresses and evolves, DEI is becoming a more primary concern for organizations. DEI plays a key role in the retention of employees, especially those in the Millennial and Gen Z generations. In order to ensure that organizations are keeping adequate track of their DEI efforts, Equality’s Little Helpers have proposed a type of scorecard that companies can use to ensure they are meeting proper inclusion standards. The question of who would have the authority to set these standards came to mind, so this team proposed that an impartial third party system handles the evaluations through surveys, and that each specific organization should have resources on hand in order to address and actively improve upon their shortcomings.

Equality’s Little Helpers will donate $500 to Kids in Need of Defense, an organization that works to ensure the safety and security of migrant children as they look for a new place to call home.

Team Awesome

What They Came Up With: A customizable workflow within the GoCo system to aid with DEI data collection.

The status quo is simply to not collect DEI information from employees at all. However, it’s important to realize that not only are you evaluating your team, but they are also evaluating you and your organization. Keeping track of how your employees identify within various groups ensures that you can provide adequate funding and support for them and that you foster a healthy, positive work environment. With this tool, employees can answer prompts pertaining to allyship and presence in marginalized communities. As tasks are completed, employees can earn a DEI badge, signifying their completion of the workflow and participation in this pivotal aspect of the organization. Team Awesome’s workflow does an amazing job at emphasizing and optimizing GoCo’s key principle of DEI, and we can’t wait to get it up and running within our system for real.

Team Awesome will donate $500 to Girls Who Code, whose mission is to close the gender gap in the tech world and change the stereotypical image of a programmer.

Ms. Lizzle’s Magic School Bus

What They Came Up With: Improving Your DEIQ: a monthly newsletter for GoCo and its users.

Here at GoCo, making sure that our team is educated and constantly learning more about DEI and all that that entails. This newsletter will have a specific focus for each month’s edition. For example, May is AAPI Heritage Month, so Volume I of the newsletter discusses AAPI history, statistics, and resources! This solution also comes with interactive educational activities, such as making a recipe from an Asian culture and reading an ebook on the topic!

Team Awesome also suggests implementing a “passport” for DEI, a year long competition where employees complete DEI-related tasks for a prize at the end!

Ms. Lizzle’s Magic School Bus will donate $500 to Project Include, a non-profit that strives for diversity and inclusion within the tech industry.

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We are so grateful to have had the opportunity to host this Hackathon and really put our team to the test. We’ve built some amazing products that we’re excited to implement into our operation and to share with you! 

Last but certainly not least, we’d like to give a special thank you to our outstanding judges!

Madison Butler – VP of People + Impact at GRAV

Ashley Dellagiacoma – Pastor at KINDRED+ Montrose

Gemma Toth – HR Manager at Epsen Hillmer Graphics

Michael Gugel – Chief Product Officer at GoCo

Nir Leibovich – Chief Executive Officer at GoCo

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