Unilever’s Foundry IDEAS™ platform, powered by Spigit, enables collaborative ideation with start-ups, creatives, and inventors around the world to discover cutting-edge solutions to the world’s sustainability challenges.
These days, organizations are finding programs that don’t demonstrate value very hard to justify and support. If it’s dismissed as a “nice-to-have” rather than a necessity, crowdsourcing innovation will always be an uphill battle, and one that never delivers on its promises.
It goes without saying that the healthcare industry has a thing or two to do with people. Because of that, it should go without saying that the primary focus of this industry is, then, people — their experiences as doctors, patients, and other healthcare stakeholders — and innovation efforts should support that.
Handing projects over to vendors requires an extensive commitment to preliminary planning and buy-in. It diminishes flexibility, and can create major bottlenecks for approvals and iterations. It threatens deadlines, and involves an extra layer of risks and requirements. And unless you have a very established brand with a fixed message, you’ll miss out on opportunities for new ideas and iteration based on the experiences and expertise of your employees — i.e., the people who are most familiar with your business.
According to the people who spend their time researching this sort of thing, the importance of ‘managing innovation initiatives systematically’ (i.e., using intelligent technology) is and will continue to be a driving force behind employee engagement, open innovation, and the successful development of the ideation process.
Confused by crowdsourcing? You’re not alone — though it’s getting more popular by the day, this approach to innovation is still new to many business leaders. But with 30% of CEOs worried that they’re not risking enough for growth, and 69% fearful of competitors stealing their business, it’s time to learn the ropes. In a nutshell of 6 easy steps, this is how crowdsourcing innovation works.
Crowdsourcing innovation is one of today’s most powerful tools for effecting real, lasting change. No matter the industry, it exposes business challenges and social issues to diverse perspectives like nothing else can, inviting ideas that might otherwise remain unheard. It was exactly this benefit that led the Poway Unified School District of California to develop their InnovationU program, backed by Spigit, to crowdsource ideas for improving the safety and security of all students and staff district-wide.
In an effort to bring lasting solutions to the Frazier community, FRI, a non-profit organization in Dallas, has developed the What Works Challenge, an idea management hub powered by Spigit innovation management software. By crowdsourcing ideas from around the world, FRI hopes to answer a crucial question: How can we create opportunities for living-wage jobs for hard-to-employ residents of high-risk urban communities?
The challenge for many large organizations is not that they shy away from actively managing their innovation programs. Rather, they create overly elaborate dashboards and struggle to find the clear link between cause and effect: Are we healthy? How would we know?
Spigit CTO James Gardner shares some of his expert tips on using software for crowdsourcing innovation and building your idea pipeline.