Customer Stories

Empowering Innovation: How JLL’s Hackathons Achieved Extraordinary Growth with Devpost for Teams

See how using DFT helped increase employee participation by over 50%.


Discover how JLL, a real estate services powerhouse, unleashed a wave of innovation and achieved exceptional results in its internal hackathons with the help of Devpost for Teams (DFT). This year JLL skyrocketed employee participation by over 50%, inspired collaboration, and transformed ordinary ideas into extraordinary solutions. 

Before using DFT, the team at JLL felt that planning its hackathons was more manual and cumbersome than they wanted. We interviewed Shantala Deepak, Portfolio/Program Management at JLL, about how things have changed since using the DFT platform. Here’s a look at how JLL increased employee participation and project submissions with its internal hackathons on DFT.

Table of Contents

  • Company profile
  • Key considerations and goals
  • Challenges
  • The solution

Company Profile

JLL is a Fortune 500® company. It is a global real estate services provider that buys, builds, occupies, and invests in a variety of real estate assets. JLL’s vision is to shape the future of real estate for a better world and is dedicated to transforming the industry through technology-based innovation.

In the fast-paced world of real estate services, JLL has always stayed ahead of the curve. Fueling its success is a culture of innovation, where employees are encouraged to think big and step outside their comfort zones. One unique catalyst for this culture of creativity is JLL's internal hackathons. JLL began hosting internal hackathons in 2021 and started using Devpost for Teams in 2022.

“We want to unleash the creative power within our team members, revolutionize ideas, ignite innovation, and at the heart of it all, build a strong and supportive community!” said Shantala Deepak, JLL. 

With a strong focus on technology and innovation, JLL holds regular internal hackathons for its team members around the world and across business lines.

JLL’s key considerations and goals

  • Ignite creativity and break boundaries
  • Increase awareness and participation in hackathons across technology and business
  • Create an opportunity for learning, growth, and team collaboration
  • Create a seamless experience with an all-in-one platform with unmatched support 


As a global company with over 65,000 people spread across multiple time zones, JLL needed a platform that would create a great hackathon experience. The team organizing the hackathons wanted to streamline the processes that had been manual and cumbersome in 2021.

The new platform had to save organizers time and effort, enhance communication with participants, and, overall, provide a smooth and efficient experience for organizers, judges, and participants. The team at JLL wanted a platform with registration, project creation, and judging all in one platform.

The Solution

Since using DFT, the JLL team has seen a big improvement in the performance of their internal hackathons year-over-year, including:

  • 52.3% increase in participation
  • 60.5% increase in the number of projects started
  • 56.3% increase in the number of completed projects
  • 82.4% of participants submitted projects
  • Positive feedback from participants

#1 All-in-one platform with great customer service

JLL used DFT to streamline its internal hackathons. “Devpost provided a comprehensive platform to manage all aspects of the hackathon, from registration to submission and judging,” said Shantala. 

DFT makes it easy to plan and manage the entire hackathon with built-in features like hackathon templates, a project gallery, and a tab for participant resources. 

To help ensure their hackathon was a success, the JLL team was supported by the Devpost services team. The Devpost team prides itself on its prompt response rate and helping clients maximize the results of their events. “[We] have loved Devpost and the support group,” said Shantala. 

“Overall, using Devpost for hackathon planning significantly simplified and improved our process,” said Shantala. “It saved us time and effort, enhanced communication with participants, and provided a smooth and efficient experience for the organizers and participants.”

#2 Great participation, engagement, and collaboration

Since switching to DFT, the JLL team has had impressive growth in hackathon participation. “The number of participants is an excellent indicator of the hackathon's success,” said Shantala. “We are delighted to announce that we have had—and continue to have—an overwhelming response to our event, with an exceptional turnout of talented individuals, all eager to create innovative solutions.”

Getting more team members involved was one of JLL’s main goals and using DFT has allowed the team to gauge the success of their events more effectively.

“Another aspect we measure is the level of engagement and collaboration among participants,” said Shantala. “Devpost allows participants to connect, communicate, and collaborate, fostering a supportive and vibrant community.

“We were thrilled to witness vibrant discussions, productive collaboration, and the support [Devpost] provided to fellow participants.”

#3 Built-in and efficient judging

Effective judging is paramount to the success of any hackathon. Shantala emphasized how DFT simplifies hackathon judging, enabling JLL to engage a panel of expert judges who meticulously assess projects based on predefined criteria.

“One of the key advantages of using DFT was the consolidation of all necessary information in a single, centralized location,” said Shantala. “Teams could easily submit their projects through the platform, ensuring a consistent format and enabling judges to evaluate them seamlessly. DFT's robust features facilitated the entire judging process, providing a user-friendly interface for judges to score and provide feedback.”

She highlighted that this ensured that judges had all the information they needed readily available, which promoted a fair and comprehensive evaluation that drove innovation and recognized outstanding achievements.

#4 Facilitating AI hackathons

In its latest internal hackathon, JLL focused on the tremendous potential of GenAI. Shantala shared insights into the event and described how the team ensured participants had the necessary information—while also highlighting the impact of AI hackathons.

Shantala shared that JLL organized a series of engaging workshops to kickstart the hackathon. These sessions introduced participants to the concept of GenAI, unraveling its capabilities and exploring its many applications. 

“The aim was to inspire creativity and spark a wave of innovative thinking,” said Shantala. “Brainstorming sessions became a focal point, as participants collaborated and shared their ideas, leveraging the power of GenAI to revolutionize their hackathon projects.”

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