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Innovation & Crowdsourcing Software to Unleash the Power of Your Network and Enable Open Innovation and Idea Implementation
Even the most egalitarian, Kumbaya-progressive companies often forget that the crucial ideas—the potential game-changing, breakthrough innovations—can come from anyone, anywhere, and at any time. While the innovation process typically needs the structure of a repeatable innovation process and ownership (a champion and thought-leader within the organization), idea generation and innovation should never be limited to just the company big-wigs and specially-formed teams. Elite status within a company does not necessarily catalyze effective idea generation and innovation; but rather, creates a debilitating caste system for who is and who isn’t allowed to generate ideas, which can obscure some of the best ideas and ultimately prove fatal to the company.
You’ve heard it time and time again: companies need to innovate in order to survive. Or, as we like to say in the business innovation books Robert’s Rules of Innovation and Robert’s Rules of Innovation II: “Innovate or Die.” That’s why some of the most successful, pro-innovation companies and their forward-thinking leadership teams use a crowdsourcing approach to innovation. And that’s where crowdsourcing software can be boundlessly useful. An excellent option is Spigit and as described on Spigit’s website:
“Spigit crowdsourcing software is used every day for process innovation, breakthrough ideas, cost reductions, and to engage employees in innovation initiatives.”
“Spigit engages internal and external crowds in innovation, anywhere in the world. The crowd helps you find and implement that valuable idea that your company has never tried…until now. And only Spigit finds the best ideas automatically, using patented crowd science algorithms.”
Product experts, corner-office execs, R&D teams—they don’t always come up with the most innovative ideas; but rather, it’s often the employees on the front lines who do. Professional expertise alone doesn’t lead to innovation and new product development; life experiences are just as valuable, if not more valuable to the innovation process.
Just consider the case of telecommunication giant AT&T (#34 on the Fortune Global 500 list). Have you heard of AT&T’s exceptionally popular Drive Mode app (a mobile app that can be set-up to automatically send a customizable reply to incoming messages when the vehicle starts moving at 25 mph, in order to reduce a driver’s temptation to look away from the road at his or her incoming text messages)? Did you know that this app was the brainchild of an AT&T call center employee who was personally affected by the dangers or texting-while driving? Right there—that’s the power of crowdsourcing for innovation!
AT&T uses Spigit’s dynamic online innovation management platform to power their company’s innovation pipeline, which AT&T has named the “TIP” program. According to Spigit, “The program has yielded significant ROI to date, resulting in numerous revenue-generating initiatives, including new global marketing campaigns, service plans, and apps.” Moreover, “TIP gets employees involved in collaborative innovation and puts the venture capital model to work internally at AT&T. To date, TIP has attracted over 130,000 employee members worldwide, resulting in numerous patents and over $44 million in seed funding allocated by AT&T for viable projects.”
While crowdsourcing innovation is becoming exponentially more popular over time, this nouveau-tech approach to innovation is nevertheless new, counterintuitive, and fear-producing to many business leaders. But as Mark A. Goodburn, Global Head of Advisory for KPMG, says, “Maintaining status quo, while incredibly comfortable, is the most risky thing you can do in today’s world.” Being open to change is scary, but necessary. If you want your business to not just survive but also thrive in today’s new innovation landscape, you must reevaluate your long-standing and likely outdated business model. Restructuring to a more open business model, complete with crowdsourcing tools from companies such as Spigit, will allow for your business to both create and capture value as well as get ahead (and stay ahead) of the curve.
Need more proof: AT&T is not the only Fortune 500 Company to use Spigit: UnitedHealth Group, Citi, Cambia Health Solutions, Pfizer, Polaris, and Siemens, just to a name a few, also innovate with Spigit.
Creating a thriving corporate eco-system of innovation complete with the actual implementation of innovation is a complicated and high-stakes endeavor, yet an absolutely necessary one for corporate survival. In today’s hyper-competitive business environment, innovation is not optional—it’s absolutely imperative for survival and success. You’ll need all the help you can get in this high-stakes industry, so strongly consider Spigit’s software that promotes a potentially powerful crowdsourcing approach to innovation.
To learn more about Spigit, check out the company’s website. For more information on how to promote and implement innovation within your company, check out the innovation books Robert’s Rules of Innovation: A 10-Step Program for Corporate Survival (to order, see Amazon) and Robert’s Rules of Innovation II: The Art of Implementation (available as of December 8, 2015 on both Amazon.com and at selected bookstores; to order today, see Amazon).