This week, SAP landed in the heart of Provo, Utah at Brigham Young University to run an exclusive SAP + Qualtrics Data Visualization Hackathon. Over 30 undergraduate and graduate students from the BYU Marriott School of Business entered a four-hour contest to create unique and insightful dashboards using Qualtrics’ experiential data sets on SAP Analytics Cloud.

The hackathon gave these individual an opportunity to dive into the art of visualization and get guidance from SAP experts for developing visual content with real business data and people survey insights. The judging panel was comprised of top-level executives highly involved with higher education initiatives at SAP:

  • Ann Rosenberg, Senior Vice President & Global Head of SAP Next-Gen
  • Jon Reed, Co-Founder of Diginomica
  • Vinnie Mirchandani, Founder of Deal Architect
  • Stacey Fish, Global Corporate Affairs at SAP, and Craig Cmehill, Head of Communities & Influencers at SAP

Judges at the Hackathon: (left to right) Craig Cmehil, Jon Reed, Stacey Fish, Vinnie Mirchandani

Judging Criteria

The submissions were judged on the business application of their visualization and the utilization and design of the software. Judges evaluated:

  • Is the analysis used effectively to support the originally intended goal?
  • Are the business recommendations feasible?
  • Are the insights presented clearly solve the problem originally stated?
  • Do the visuals include a variety of charts and tables?
  • Is the visualization easy to interpret?
  • Are the visualizations original?Iis the use of data and visualizations compelling, unique, and creative?

Special thanks to BYU for their efforts in making this collaboration a success.

Congratulations to the Viz-a-thon Winners!

1st Place Goes to Seth Erickson and Spencer Larson

1st place winners, Seth Erickson and Spencer Larson holding their prize.

“Participating in the SAP + Qualtrics case competition was a wonderful experience! We were tasked to sort through tons of data and find trends in the company that could lead to making business decisions using organized dashboards. Spencer and I created a list of potential issues and then ended up basing our dashboard off of the lowest survey scores. This created a basis for the dashboard that allowed us to look at survey scores in various categories and find trends within different categories. It was a great experience to work in a team environment analyzing valuable data that previously was difficult to see value in. Dashboards truly do remove the barriers to understanding big data!” – Seth Erickson, BYU


“My participation in the hackathon at BYU’s Marriott School of Business was the first time I have ever created a dashboard and used SAP’s Analytics Cloud software, but it definitely won’t be my last! For a beginner, the software was extremely easy to learn and very user-friendly, but it was so powerful that the possibilities of how to use it are endless. It energized me, and I can’t wait to dig deeper. Thank you, SAP and Qualtrics!” Spencer Larson, Sophomore, BYU

2nd Place Goes to Hunter Cannon

2nd place winner, Hunter Cannon holding his prize

Participating in the SAP competition was a great learning experience. I had never used SAP analytics before the competition. In just the four hours of the competition, I got a sense for the power of the tools and I was able to draw insights from data and display them in an easy to read dashboard.Hunter Cannon, MBA, BYU

 3rd Place Goes to Madeline Beck

Our third winner was unique as she was the only non-business student in the crowd. Madeline is studying political science at BYU.

The software was so intuitive! As a political science student with an emphasis in data and research, I have used countless programs to visualize and present results. This one took very little time to learn, and I was able to see relationships very quickly. No matter how monumental or important the results of our research are, if we do not have programs like this to allow us to present the results clearly for others, it does not matter what we find. This program has some amazing capabilities that I could easily apply to any project I work on.” Madeline Beck, Junior, BYU

SAP Analytics Cloud for Higher Education

SAP Analytics Cloud for Higher Education provides faculty the tools to better prepare the next generation analysts, data scientists, and business leaders for the intelligent enterprise. Our vision is to connect students to a global community that provides opportunities to unlock their potential with SAP’s industry leading business intelligence, planning, and predictive solutions. If you are a faculty member or a student, you can start your journey with SAP Analytics Cloud through our academic version trail account.

SAP Analytics Cloud team works in collaboration with SAP University Alliance and SAP Next-Gen to bring SAP Analytics Cloud to classroom all over the world. The team is soon coming back with a 2019 #SocialHero Viz-a-thon for North America and Latin American schools and universities. Stay tuned!