McDonalds’ culture of innovation and market hyper-responsiveness ensures that this quick service restaurant (QSR) giant stays ahead of the game. Burger Hack was born to leverage their employees’ creativity and intrapreneurial spirits in a way that also serves as an incredible learning journey for them – this annual innovation sprint is designed so they can freely ideate, experiment with new technology, and collaborate between global teams.


Revolutionizing The QSR Industry


Every year, Burger Hack evolves to become bigger and better. With more participants, judges, mentors, and partners, comes more ideas and solutions that find its way into McDonalds’ business strategies and roadmaps for the future.


During BurgerHack 2020, Text On Arrival (TOA) was born. After Team Pied Piper continued to refine the code after the hackathon, they eventually received buy-in to launch the pilot in May 2021 in Canada. This is a tool aimed to:

1) Simplify communication between restaurant crew and delivery couriers when the dining room is closed

2) Streamline interactions during late periods so couriers do not need to use the drive-thru

What made this solution so innovative was that it required very little resources to implement, was easy-to-learn, and provided value by creating a more efficient and accurate experience for everyone. At their pilot store, it increased delivery handoff ratings by 18% while decreased their refund rate by 15% - talk about some real results!


Finding Opportunities For Innovation


Seeing this prototype come to life was incredibly exciting for our team at Onova, as well our partners at Capgemini, and of course at McDonald’s. It’s rewarding to see bottom-up innovation come to life, from being brainstormed during the Burger Hack innovation event to being launched into the Canadian market. There is creativity, ideas, and solutions everywhere and, oftentimes, the first place to look is in our employees. With the right processes and methodologies, you can learn to break down real business problems and crowdsource brilliant solutions from across the organization.


Burger Hack is an incredible example of intrapreneurship and open innovation. These types of events allows your employees to explore every aspect of your business. Better yet, your innovators are, often, the people who experience your biggest barriers and witness your customer’s pain points up front. The untapped potential in one of your biggest assets - your employees - can be incredible when your organization is able to build a culture that focuses on innovation, resiliency, and its people – all led by an invigorating and purposeful mission.


Keep an eye out for what BurgerHack 2021 will bring to global markets – we’re all ready for another year of global innovation!