Driving Innovations for Optimum Results
Today there are lots of new and shiny technology all around, I invite to think about some core drivers that should be taken into account when we think of innovation, specially in these frugal times.
• Real value creation as a priority. Innovation in the covid context with the budgetary restrictions most companies are facing is about value creation, real and measurable value, taking the cost into account and comparing it with a real measure of benefit, mainly in terms of real money.
• Project pipeline. Deciding which projects are worth investing in, and in what other is key to create value (including innovation projects). This process should involve representatives of different areas in the decision-making process. This helps engage them from the beginning, brings a bigger picture, and ensure the projects selected create the most value. A predefined and expedited process of measuring value and prioritizing is best.
• Post go-live value creation. Usually there is more focus on the value creation measurement before a project is approved, the benefit estimations are optimistic, and it is harder and less popular to measure the real value created after go-live and compare it with the plans. It is a good practice to keep measuring the value creation for example in monthly basis, align the numbers with finances and share them with stakeholders. Thus, redirecting and gathering lessons learned if the results are not as expected or celebrating if they are.
• Customer satisfaction and their direct feedback or “reviews”. When you visit the cellphone application store or an online shopping place you are used to see direct feedback from the customer and 1 to 5 stars reviews. In some companies specially with the internal customers this is not that common, moving closer to the customer (internal or external)with constant, effective, and direct feedback is a way to ensure and measure value creation from their perspective. This accompanied by a good feedback cycle, where monitoring, reviews and actions are taken accordingly, should improve value creation and satisfaction with IT services and products.
• Innovation in the context of Covid. This situation has brought changes we are all aware of, when possible most if not all employees working at home, social distancing, temperature, and forum control, gathering restrictions, virtual meetings instead of in person, among others. As with the Covid we are not sure how long it will take to go back to normal, many companies are opting for SaaS innovations to manage the new needs in some cases, those can be paid month by month without a long-term commitment. In contrast with the flexible SaaS arrangements mentioned before, companies as well are changing from the roots allowing virtual collaboration and remote work now and in the future, as well as investing in virtual stores and businesses to generate income or benefits in the long-term.