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The Top 5 Benefits of Open Innovation Software

02.05.2014
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At WE THINQ, we think that innovation management software is pretty great - it's a given. Yet we often run in to people who love innovation but are wary of using innovation management software. They think that giving too much sway to the innovation process will stifle the creative process, that implementing a software will take too much time, or that the only tool one needs for Open Innovation to work is a good idea. As our clients can attest to these objections are misguided. The right innovation management tool adds a great value to the innovation process. Below we have explained what we think are the top 5 benefits to using innovation management software:

1. Improves visibility.

One of the benefits of Open Innovation is the amount of people you can include in your innovation process. If you have no platform for your ideas to show to prospective participants, your projects will remain segregated. Further, innovation management tools allow you to track the entire process from start to finish. Your process will be transparent. Everyone can see who submitted ideas, who voted or commented on various ideas, and how the process went forward. If only one or a small group of people have access to this information, participants won't feel ownership over the process. If you want to gather external ideas, you need to have a visible platform.

2. Better decision making.

The transparency built up through using an idea management tool allows moderators to make clear decisions. An innovation management tool streamlines the flow of information, making the decision-making-process much simpler and easier to track. Idea management can also help you with research development to help you make more informed decisions.

3. Accelerates time to market.

While having interesting ideas is at the heart of innovation, there is a whole process between coming up with the idea and turning that idea into a useful product or service. Using a tool allows different people to participate at different times in the innovation process from volunteers, finance gurus, techies, and salespeople. They will all have access to all the information making their jobs easier and more thorough.

4. Idea submission is flexible.

If you put out an idea box at your office (or even on your website) you have already limited the types of ideas people can submit. You have also limited the amount of people you can reach. With innovation management platforms, gathering external ideas is easy. People can submit anonymously or not, can submit a text, pictures, sketches, documents, or an idea for discussion. You also have the chance to reach anyone that has access to a computer and knows how to work a keyboard. Suggestion boxes are a thing of the past.

5. Platform for discussion.

Most importantly, innovation management software provides a tool for discussion. Open Innovation is a group process. CEOs, moderators, staff, and community members from all around the world are able to suggest, discuss and debate how to improve your organisation. Instead of having a group of admin staff trying to monitor and organise all of this information, an idea management tool will do all the work for you while also making the information available to all of your participants.

Have you ever used innovation management software? Has it helped your innovation process?