CodeDay is a series of ‘hackathons’ across 43 cities in the US run by StudentRND, a public charity with a mission to inspire students everywhere to learn to code. CodeDay hackathons are fun and intense 24 hour workshops where anyone can come together to build apps and games
No skills are needed. Artists, coders, designers, musicians or anyone can attend. Participants join a group, brainstorm their idea and take it from inception to completion in just 24 hours. CodeDay hackathons are unique because they are based on learning and not prizes or awards. This makes CodeDay uniquely strong at attracting students from all backgrounds and generating a rich and open learning environment where participants can excel.
“Interns from CodeDay are the best we’ve ever hired.” - Engineer at Ebay
Tyler Menezes (Executive Director at CodeDay) explains, “Previously, we just emailed a PDF to each attendee/parent, and asked them to bring a signed copy with them. Often, students either never saw the email or forgot it at home, so we'd need to hold up check-in while they signed a new waiver. In some cases, minors would need a parent signature, but no parent would be present, so we'd just the waiver and increase our liability.”
A lot of research went into other e-signature platforms. But similar level APIs were restricted to enterprise scale businesses, putting them out of scope for CodeDay. The practicality and accessibility of Legalesign’s API by comparison, mean that, for the level of documents CodeDay required, Legalesign was the only serious option.
The email and paper-based system not only exposed CodeDay to liabilities but also meant that long 30-minute queues formed at the start of events. The impact was more than logistical: it created a poor impression on attendees, causing frustration and waning attendees excitement at the start of the event, one of the most important moments of the day.
Tyler and the team at StudentRND realized they needed a seamless experience for their CodeDay attendees, an easy to use waiver signing system that could be completed ahead of time. The solution was to build an integrated registration system that included the waiver signing through the Legalesign API.
Tyler describes how it works, “Immediately after a student registers for CodeDay, they get an email prompting them to fill out their age and parent contact info, then we forward them to the waiver-signing page (or, if they're under 18, send the link to their parent). We use the Legalesign API to automatically create a new waiver-signing request, and then embed the document signing form in our webpage. Then, as soon as the form is signed, our application gets the finalized PDF, stores a copy for our records, and tells the student they're all set to attend.”
In addition, the integration sends out automated reminders for those signers who do not complete, so by the time the event begins almost all waivers have been taken care of, leaving only a handful needing to be signed out side the door.
1. Student starts their registration online.
2. Receive email to continue
3. Arrives at the embedded Legalesign signing page
4. Registration complete!
E-signature proved to be the right decision. Integrating it through the API was easy to do and now provides the best experience for attendees: Tyler said, “From the student's perspective, [registration] is now totally seamless and takes a few minutes at most.” The issues that led to the integration have been resolved: long queues at the start of events have been reduced from 30 minutes to 2-3 minutes and the risk of liabilities from minors attending with no signed waivers has been eliminated. The support required from the CodeDay team on waiver related issues is now near zero too.