Successful Corporate Innovation Programs: Best Practices & Takeaways

Corporate innovation is a central ingredient in the recipe for business success. To unlock its true potential, a comprehensive and considered strategy needs to be established. One of the best ways to do this is to learn from companies that have already built and implemented programs with success. 

It is shown that 81% of digitally mature companies cite innovation as a key strength. From SMEs to global organizations, inspiration can be gleaned from a variety of places. Here are five companies that have aced innovation, along with some of their best-practices

Swisscom: Innovation must be company-wide

Corporate innovation can only succeed when the whole company is invested in it. Swisscom has shown that bottom-up innovation powered by KICKBOX can develop a company culture where all employees are engaged with innovation. Moreover, it means that junior employees can work on their ideas without constantly checking in with multiple line managers. Using working time vouchers that form part of the KICKBOX program, each manager can decide what percentage of an employee's work time should be dedicated towards further development of their ideas.

The best innovations often come from junior employees who engage with the products, the company, and its audience. With rready, you can actively support those driven and ambitious employees as well as bottom-up innovation.


Google: Innovation isn’t something to just tick off

Google is one of most successful tech firms on the planet. And many of its triumphs can be attributed to a powerful innovation strategy. The organization is well-known for its 20% rule, in which workers are permitted to allocate 20% of their time to innovation. It is a tactic that has been a catalyst for achievement time and time again.

The lesson here is clear: you cannot fall into the trap of simply dedicating an hour of each week to innovation. Employees must be encouraged to work on their ideas whenever inspiration strikes.


Wohntraum: Innovations should solve problems

When thinking about innovation, many companies fall into the trap of thinking they need to do something entirely new. However, just as in the case of a startup in the field of real estate, Wohntraum, it is often better to look at the market and see how you can solve problems for the end user. It is easily one of the most effective routes to disrupting an industry.

Whether it’s producing a cost-effective alternative or bringing a new concept to the sector. If your innovation solves a problem by considering the client’s perspective, you will be destined for greater returns.


Apple: Failure should be embraced

It is suggested that up to 95% of new product innovations will fail. Even Apple has a long list of failures. However, every Macintosh portable is a step towards dominating the market with the iMac and Macbook. And, trust us, there will be hundreds of ideas that never even made it to production.

If your company is to succeed, it must champion psychological safety. If employees fear failure, they will not submit their ideas. Similarly, accepting failure as a part of the process will prevent you from dwelling on failed ideas for too long.


Siemens Energy: Innovation should have an actionable roadmap

For innovation to succeed, you must start with practical goals that are designed within the context of your brand and turn this into an actionable roadmap. Siemens Energy did this with KICKBOX, creating a visible process to support its mission statement of energizing society across the entire value chain.

When all employees understand the company’s opportunities and obstacles, while also gaining the chance to collaborate, innovation strategies will be well-aligned with the company’s journey to success.

Let us give you and your team the tools to promote innovation in your company. If you're rready to transform your business in all aspects, then reach out to us.

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