This year in March colleagues from SAP Labs Budapest participated in an exciting design event, the Global Service Jam. It was the second Jam held in Budapest and, including the Sustainability Jam, we were a proud contributor to both.

The Global Service Jam is a non-profit volunteer activity, a global annual event, organized by an informal network of enthusiastic professionals. Participants vary from designers, students, academics and business people, unemployed people, or anyone interested in innovation no matter of their backgrounds. Started in 2011, this year over 100 locations were involved with thousands of participants. Global Sustainability Jam is a sister event, and it was the occasion for the first Jam in Budapest last year November. SAP got involved through design thinking (DT) when the organizers looked for local DT coaches. Watch this video that features an interview with Markus Hilken, managing director of SAP Labs Hungary. From 3:30 he explains the connections between SAP, Jam and DT.

A Jam is a highly energetic event; groups of jammers complete full design thinking cycles from understanding to prototyping and testing in 48 hours only. The tight deadline, the emphasis on prototyping, and the fun elements make the experience a unique one. Each Global Jam has a secret theme that gets revealed through a short video spot like this. The theatrical elements are used intentionally to keep people highly engaged and focused. And the results are impressive – more than one Jammer has commented, “I did three weeks’ work in 48 hours – and had a great time.”[1]

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The Budapest Jam in March embraced all these characteristics. The 37 participants formed 6 teams and, with the help of their coaches, they followed the very strict timeline, so in the end all were able to present their prototypes of new ideas solving real life problems. The global theme, an image of a cube cut out, drove the teams to different directions:

  • co-skill is a collective intelligence service that helps to unlock the potential of people
  • Give & Get smartly helps colleting donations while people are signing up for leisure time activities
  • Story Box wishes to keep elderly people engaged and the young connected through personal histories
  • VisualEcho let the passengers cheer up their lonely metro driver.

After the research and short ideation phrases everyone got immersed in prototyping and used their newly learned skills that the coaches demonstrated to create personas, paper prototypes of applications, customer journeys, and system maps.

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These Global Jams turned out to be an excellent opportunity to expose our colleagues to the exciting startup and innovation culture developing in Budapest, and also cast SAP as a company who fosters innovation among other multinationals present in the location. Moreover, it looks like Budapest is not alone with this opinion, Jams being held simultaneously in the App Haus Heidelberg and in Bangalore too. 

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[1] http://www.workplayexperience.com/work/accelerating-innovation/

Source of photos: Global Service Jam

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