Innovation: Custom Applications Maximize the Benefits

Posted on: June 1st, 2012 - Written by: John Blomberg

Custom Applications

Business owners and executive managers are becoming convinced of innovation’s benefit to their success. Whether innovation is meant to automate, replace, enhance or add to existing operations, it provides the platform for taking a business to the next level, so to speak, getting more done in better, more efficient ways.

A recent article published in Baseline Magazine discusses its view of businesses’ crawl toward innovation. As it mentions, the Chief Innovation Officer – just a few years ago – was considered to be a position implemented by the more eccentric companies. Today it is more prevalent and continues to increase in visibility in traditional executive line-ups.

From manufacturers to call centers, and retailers to healthcare providers, innovation is today’s catalyst to increase efficiencies, greater revenues and competitive advantage.

Software designed to spec.

Technology is the infrastructure for innovation. Moreover, technology that is specifically focused on the needs and goals of specific industries or business types helps those businesses leverage innovation for even greater improvement. After all, when companies can apply features and functionality in applications that do exactly what their customer, employees and processes call for, doesn’t it make sense that tremendous leaps in effectiveness would follow?

The devil is in the details.

Hold on just a minute. Before developing custom applications, someone has to get a handle on how each specific businesses work and what they are trying to accomplish. Wouldn’t it also make sense for someone who understands technology’s ability to optimize and maximize business processes to marry these two sets of information? The result is a roadmap for the customer software that will do amazing things for this business.

The key in getting this done is identifying highly-skilled development resources with astute business insight. Either or doesn’t work here. It takes both.

Read more about the increasing necessity to innovate below.

Business Crawls Toward an Innovation Framework

The growing prominence of the chief innovation officer indicates that innovation is becoming an important business priority.

By Samuel Greengard
Baseline Magazine, 04-04-2012

It’s hardly news that the structure of the modern corporation is undergoing fundamental change. In order to compete more effectively, businesses are searching for ways to manage strategic issues more effectively.

Enter the chief innovation officer. Only a few years ago, the title seemed a bit eccentric and stilted. However, according to a global innovation leadership study conducted by Capgemini Consulting in partnership with the IESE Business School at the University of Navarra in Spain, the role of the chief innovation officer can no longer be discounted.

A survey of 260 executives worldwide found that 43 percent of respondents have a formally accountable innovation executive in place, compared to just 33 percent in 2011. In addition, 32 percent reported that building and nurturing an innovation ecosystem is a top priority. “This rise of the chief innovation officer suggests driving innovation is becoming a key priority for companies everywhere,” the report states.

On the other hand, 58 percent of companies surveyed still lack an explicit innovation strategy, and most companies fall into the category of “innovation laggards.” Only 30 percent of respondents agree that they have an effective organizational structure in place for driving innovation, and only 24 percent believe that innovation efforts inside their companies are effectively aligned. A mere 7 percent fall into the category of “innovation leaders.”

Most innovation strategies continue to be driven from the top-down, with only 11 percent of respondents explicitly involving employees in the strategy development process. The CEO is still considered the most important source of an innovation culture (69 percent).

“The study reveals a worrying lack of involvement of non-senior employees in the innovation process within most companies,” notes Paddy Miller, professor of managing people in organizations at the IESE Business School in Barcelona. A more “bottom-up” approach that focuses on “people as the key source of competitive advantage” is necessary.

“It is vital to capture individual insights from both managers and employees,” Miller added.

Read the original article.

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