Steps to support innovation
You can support innovation in your business by adhering to the following framework.
The first step toward fostering successful innovation is simple: Aspire to be innovative. Motivate your leadership team to support and grow innovative processes. However, don’t just pay lip service to the concept. Get executives on board to provide the resources necessary to stimulate real innovation.
Essentially, you can’t expect innovation to appear out of thin air. It has to be nurtured and cultivated. Employees must feel empowered to drive change. If you want to improve your digital workplace, give your team impassioned reasons as to why it’s so critical.
Now you need hard data to back up your innovation projects. This means observing the activities of your customers and employees. See where common issues crop up and how they are hurting the company. Perhaps a majority of employees aren’t able to efficiently navigate your current technological systems, causing customer service or administrative problems. If that’s the case, you need to understand exactly what issues you have before you can hope to fix them.
Once you have the full picture as to what and where the trouble spots are, you must then come up with the ideas to address them. Solicit solutions from your IT department and other innovative teams. If a non-technical team has an idea that seems plausible, run it by the IT department to get a more in-depth analysis of its feasibility.
You may now have a list of achievable suggestions that is pretty long. Unfortunately, your resources may be limited and consequently, not all of those suggestions are likely to be implemented. If that’s the situation at your company, evaluate which ideas will have the largest positive impact. Additionally, during this screening process, it’s important to follow up with the people who suggested the ideas that did not make the cut and inform them as to your reasons. This keeps employees in the loop and lets them know that they aren’t being ignored.
This is where new ideas are executed and put into operating procedures. It doesn’t have to be rolled out company-wide, especially if the change is large. To start the process, you can do A/B testing or team-specific rollouts to test feedback. You can then tailor the wider rollout with responses to common reactions, allowing for a smoother, less stressful process.
Once an innovation sees widespread adoption, there is likely to be a lot of feedback. Gather it and make changes where applicable. Within your digital workplace, solutions like a social intranet offer various communication channels, such as surveys, to streamline your process and gather these results more efficiently. Additionally, remember that not every little concern will require a measured response, but if you receive the same feedback over and over, you know where your problem areas lie.
These steps for implementing innovation can make a disruption to your business model much more manageable. The process itself is aided through the use of a digital workplace that emphasizes communication and collaboration, and is more likely to foster innovation. When ideas and information are free-flowing and easy to access from anywhere, innovation is a natural consequence. Set your organization up to meet the challenges of the future by adopting a robust digital workplace that uses solutions such as a social intranet.