Royal Mail Group Automation Hackathon with Red Hat Ansible

Do you have what it takes to crack the RMG's automation challenges?

Countdown to hackathon

9-12 March @London, Atos MCP

The hackathon has started!


2 Dec – 15 Jan, 2020

Register your interest and form your team to compete!

Idea Submission

3 – 7 Feb

Submit an idea on how will you tackle either of the pre-defined Problem Statements

Idea & Team Nomination

10 – 14 Feb

Submit an idea on how will you tackle either of the pre-defined Problem Statements


9 – 12 Mar

Submit an idea on how will you tackle either of the pre-defined Problem Statements

At Atos our mission is to design tech solutions for couriers determined to deliver ambitious digital strategies. Following the implementation of RedHat Ansible, we’re collaborating with Red Hat, the world’s leading provider of enterprise open source solutions, on an exciting project that will drive innovation through automation exclusively for the Royal Mail Group.

We’re inviting you to take part in this four-day Hackathon at Atos London MCP office, with accommodation included, during which you will learn how to:

Tackle high-impact challenges

Significantly improve customer satisfaction and process efficiency by resolving repeat, high impacting issues through collaboration.

Identify & create value with Red Hat

Identify new innovative opportunities using RedHat Ansible technology

Create innovative automation solutions

Demonstrate effective automation that minimises internal and client challenges the Private Sector.

Up-skill on Red Hat Ansible technology

Develop awareness and adoption of RedHat Ansible technologies

Why participate?

Other than fostering how automation can deliver solutions to your clients, you’ll get more…

Change of scenery

Break out of your everyday routine, take a journey to our Atos UK&I – London Mid City Place to spend time together with top-performing Red Hat Ansible Practitioners for four days. Psst, there’s an after-party and a hotel stay included!

Sense of purpose

This is your opportunity to Do Things Your Way and put your Rapid problem-solving skills into practice to come up with an Ansible automation solution that’s addressing a real business case for Royal Mail Group saving £100k a year!

F2F with senior mentors

Direct access to senior-level mentorship from Red Hat and Atos to boost your technical-depth on Ansible and opportunity to hone your user-centric design skills 

Pitch training & C-level networking

Refine your pitching skills and have the opportunity to meet the C-level execs from Atos, Royal Mail and Red Hat 

Frequently Asked Questions

A hackathon is a useful innovation tool for exploring difficult problems and creating new and innovative solutions. It does not have to involve technology but usually does. This is a strictly time-boxed event, usually lasting for 1-3 days during which representatives from various disciplines come together to form diverse, multi-disciplinary teams and collaborate intensively.

Examples already used within Atos:
Microsoft Power Hack and Red Hat Sustainability OpenShift Hack 

Learn more about hackathons in general

A mixture between a Focused and Experimental hackathon conducted in Atos London Mid City Place (MCP) with augmented teams from around the globe, participating online.

Hackathon’s characteristics:

  • Problem statements mapped to real client challenges that are approved by Royal Mail Group
  • Participant tech training on Red Hat Ansible technology to be provided upfront
  • Participant Account knowledge and background to be provided upfront
  • Pre-screened participants to ensure awareness of the Hackathon agenda and proposed outcomes
  • Pre-screened ideas to provide sufficient opportunity to drive innovation
  • Local hacker hub at Atos London MCP office + remote participation
  • During billable hours
  • Over a period of 4 working days
  • Working in teams. Team size of 3 people max. If more proposed, needs a clear justification.

The hackathon’s theme is Automation.

Each team can choose any of the following Problem Statements to tackle during the Hackathon

  • Problem statement 1:
    Automate the End to End Patching Process to enable the future delivery of specific task automation


  • Problem statement 2:
    Optimise availability and completion of Server infrastructure to Royal Mail Group, including lead times and acceptance into support.


  • Problem statement 3:
    Enable an automated mechanism for Firewall requests to reduce process completion times.

The Hackathon will take place at the Atos UK&I – London Mid City Place (MCP) but will also be accessed virtually across several Atos locations across the globe. The Hackathon is scheduled between Monday 9th March – Thursday 13th March 2020.

  • Evaluation of pitches will be presented to a Jury panel and assessed against an agreed Evaluation Criteria and Weighting. This will be cascaded during pre-Hackathon training calls.
  • The jury will consist of the Atos SLT team & Royal Mail Group representatives.
  • Each solution can be awarded total of 22 points span across 3 categories.

Business Category – 10pts
i.e. how will your solution transform the organisation?

  • Innovation level – 2pts
    i.e. we never thought of that!

  • Short term value – 5pts
    i.e. the concept has been delivered in a way which reduces RMG’s business impact during the deployment stage

  • Long term value – 3pts
    i.e. the concept has been well-thought through and future-proofed with the business needs in mind

Technical Category – 10pts
i.e. how well is your solution built and ready to be deployed?

  • Completeness level of the solution – 5pts
    i.e. we can implement this now

  • Landscape relevancy – 3pts
    i.e. this is relevant to RMG’s technical landscape and plans

  • Efficiency – 2pts
    i.e. thoughtful and efficient selection of the selected environment and tools!
Design Functionality Category – 2pts
i.e. how easy to use are the components, the documentation and how likely to be well perceived and adopted?

  • Ease of use – 2pts
    i.e. ease of component use for the engineers

Collaboration, coaching and pitch submission will all happen in the Atos UK&I – London Mid City Place (MCP), with remote access to training materials and full access to RedHat Ansible Platform.

The tooling is yet to be selected, but likely to be a combination of Atos One GIT, Trello, O365 Suite, Circuit and a dedicated website.

Yes, you should align your participation with your line manager before you apply for the hackathon. 

This is to ensure resource planning and smooth handling of the travel arrangements and expense claims. 

The hackathon teams will be pre-formed online during the Ideas submission stage.
Only the best teams and abstracts will be nominated to compete in the hackathon.

The team requirements:

  • Team size: 3 members max
  • Team format: Recommended to have multi-disciplinary teams, to complement skillsets
  • Team lead: Each team must nominate a Team Lead to act as a single point of contact

The key roles in team:

RoleRole focusTypical career path

Focusing on the Proof of Concept’s application to a business context, acting a bridge between the business and the team e.g.

  • is this what the business needs?
  • what is the business impact of introducing this PoC?
  • can something like this be implemented without major re-vamp of the environment?
  • how to pitch the PoC?
Business Analyst, Project Manager, Sales, Marketing

Focusing on delivering a working (coded) PoC and/or ensuring technical feasibility, e.g.:

  • tech-spikes for investigating technology application for the context of PoC
  • guiding on the art-of-the-possible tech application
  • delivering partly/fully coded PoC
Full stack developer, Front-end developer, Back-end developer, System’s Architect, Data Engineer, Software Engineer, etc

Focusing on the creative side, the visualisation and ideation. Might lead or co-lead on user and business need gathering/analysis for the PoC together with Hustler. The position caters for:

  • how do we visualise this?
  • assist on story-telling, final pitch refinement
  • what do users think and feel when using the PoC?
Service Designer, UX Designer, UI Designer, Graphic Designer, etc.

There will be a selection of Prizes available for successful teams and star individuals. Potential Prizes could be as follows; Gift cards, technology, annual leave or drinks with CEO/SVP.

Process and Timeline

Registration for the hackahton

2 December – 15 January 2020

Register your interest for the hackathon! 

Ideas Submission & Assessment

3 – 7 February

Submit an idea on how will you tackle either of the pre-defined Problem Statements. The submitted ideas will be evaluated based on the published evaluation criteria and weighting. 

Idea & Team Nomination

10 – 14 February 

Only the best teams and ideas will make it to the Hackathon. All participants will be informed by Atos whether they are selected for the Hackathon and have a chance to compete for prizes.

Red Hat Tech Training

3 January – 7 March

Red Hat’s training (or existing knowledge) is a mandatory requirement for the Hackathon. The online training platform will be made available from the initial announcement of the Hackathon to the very last miles. The training is open to everyone who’s willing to up-skill on the Red Hat’s technologies.

The Hackathon

9 – 12 March

The participants are encouraged to use the Local Hacker Lab at Atos UK&I – London Mid City Place (MCP) or participate remotely. Atos, RMG & RedHat Mentors will be available in the Local Hacker lab as well as supplemented by online mentoring.

Final Pitching

12 March

You will compete alongside other finalists remotely for a prize (TBD) and other opportunities (TBD)
You have 10 minutes in total to convince the executive jury. 5 minutes to pitch your solution + 5 minutes for the Q&A session) based on the pre-defined criteria and weighting.

Countdown to hackathon

9-12 March @London, Atos MCP

The hackathon has started!