Back in the day, treasure hunts were the ultimate DIY teambuilding activity: all you needed was a trail-setter with a flair for riddles and access to a photocopier to run off clue sheets. Today, it’s a little more sophisticated. With the help of outside expertise, you can run an event that makes full use of interactive technology, too
Modern treasure hunts rely on each team carrying a tablet or other mobile device as they follow the clues on foot. Facilitators use GPS to keep tabs on the competitors, who can send evidence of solving challenges via the device’s camera.
Wildgoose (wearewildgoose.com) is a leading provider of treasure hunts, organising more than 2,000 events each year in 23 countries around the world. Head of Sales Ryan Galloway says: “Using our app and the latest GPS technology, teams set off on one of our themed treasure hunt challenges to tackle tasks, quizzes and photo and video challenges.
“Our live scoreboard functionality keeps teams on their toes and provides great competitive fun, while the prizegiving ceremony at the end gives the teams a chance to review their activity and enjoy looking at the opposing teams’ photo and video submissions.”
Outfits offering similar experiences include Team Challenge Company (teamchallenge-company.co.uk), the Team Building Company (teambuilding.co.uk) and the Treasure Hunt Company (treasurehunts.co.uk).
A great benefit of using an app is that the technology can easily be tweaked for any location. “We can do events anywhere in the UK or around the world,” says Mr Galloway. “We’ve been to Singapore on numerous occasions, and to China. If you came to me and said 2,000 people wanted an event in Timbuktu tomorrow, we could do it.”
Minimal. The challenges are cerebral rather than athletic: team members needn’t be super-fit to have a crack at winning, and those with limited mobility can take part.
A standard treasure-hunt event is good for team cohesion, and getting colleagues to communicate and collaborate. Mr Galloway says: “Beyond that, if a client wants to focus on a particular issue, we can put a focus on that into the activity – such as if a team is going through change management or has motivational problems.”
A fully managed event with Wildgoose starts at £40pp plus a £600 initial fee. A self-managed hunt, with participants using their own mobile devices, cuts costs to around £60 per app download (one per team entering), plus a remote support fee of £250 if required.