Do you effectively use the creative potential of all the employees and associates for the betterment of your business? Collaborative idea management is not a new concept, but there had been a lot of innovations happening in this regard lately and plenty of technology-assisted idea management tool and software are there to pursue.
Collaborative innovation management is basically the method of taking the out of the “crowd’s wisdom” to drive innovation. This article is meant to provide you an introduction about the best practices in innovative management many major global giants like Ericsson designed and implemented.
The need for exploiting new ideas
There are a lot of organizations facing an urgent need to explore new ideas and market opportunities to be competent with the increasing needs and pressure of customer demands. We can see that the economic recession during the final years of the last decade had also further expedited the need for innovation across the industries worldwide.
But, from where businesses can get that much innovative ideas for growth, productivity, quality, and value addition? It doesn’t always come from the business administrators or consultants, but to actualize it in the most successful manner, collaborative idea management by making employees from every level of a business involved becomes essential.
Idea management as a process
To define it, we can say that idea management is a systematic approach to;
- Selecting and,
- Distributing ideas.
The may include offering support to people across the spectrum to gather, store, enhance, prioritize, and evaluate the ideas by offering various tools and procedures. Idea management is a broad-spectrum concept, which covers all types of idea generation ranging from incremental improvement of the existing practices to exploring fresh business opportunities.
The scope of idea management tool may also range from being restricted from a single internal unit to a multi-national business network by covering all stakeholders and partners too. Some of the major brands implemented idea management tools effectively are the big names in the industry as Accenture, IBM, Whirlpool etc. Ericsson is believed to be the first company started a much structured collaborative idea management process back in 2008.
Designing an idea management system for your business
- First, invite everyone and ensure that the entire organization gets engaged.
- Let the innovation needs to get defined bottom-up by using the self-organization principle.
- It is essential use an effective IT tool to manage the idea inception and supply.
- Embrace effective collaboration to rightly leverage the expertise and the diversity of various perspectives. Maintaining openness will let the users from different levels of the organization to enhance, supplement, and comment on the ideas.
- Ensure recognition for sustainable initiatives. Also ensure that the idea owners and other contributors can transparently see what happens to the ideas.
- Effectively integrate the idea management process into the overall collaboration effort and see how these work out.
A right collaborative innovation approach can surely help enterprises to surface fresh and executable ideas and take it through the execution face to enjoy better ROI. Going a step ahead, it collaborative innovation is also now found to be an effective method of employee engagement, empowerment, and recognition along with stimulating creative activities and loyalty among the participants. An effective idea management tool will further ensure that all the objectives are perfectly met.