Businesses are becoming increasingly involved in innovation management, and this means gathering ideas from their employees. For this, they now often use idea management software. Business, in order to remain competitive, but be able to gather ideas, evaluate them, and implement them. This means that every employee has to be creative, and that they must be encouraged to be creative around the things that really matter. All of this has to be gathered and evaluated as quickly as possible as well.
Idea management software is needed to achieve this. These applications, which are usually online or on the cloud, mean employees across all geographical locations can be targeted. Their ideas are then placed in a central database. The software comes with structure evaluation processes, as well as sharing functionality. This enables a manager to quickly see where the greatest potential lies.
Now that innovation is a key feature of competitive advantage, these pieces of software are becoming vital for companies in order to remain relevant.
Features of Idea Management Software
While ever software vendor will create a different package, they usually have a few features in common. These include:
- Being campaign focused. This means a project or campaign can be set up that focuses on a specific objective. Generally, when there is a clear objective, more ideas are gathered as well.
- Being able to capture ideas in many different forms.
- Being able to set evaluation criteria. This includes different numeric scales. In so doing, they are more likely to be evaluated in a consistent manner.
- Powerful workflow process evaluation. This ensures that those who do the evaluating know exactly what they are doing. Usually, reminders can also be set so that no ideas are being missed.
- The ability to collaborate and share ideas. This is the main feature of the system of all. It should be accessible not just by the evaluators, but also everyone else within the organization, enabling them to comment on the ideas others have had. Furthermore, this element increases transparency, as it ensures everyone can see how different ideas have been evaluated. Enabling everyone access to all ideas means that they can use their own creativity to further improve specific suggestions, making them even more powerful.
Regardless of the exact features that are offered within an idea management software package, what brings them all together is their common goal. This is to rapidly find what can only be described as a needle in a haystack. Once ideas start to get gathered, they must all be considered. However, usually, there are only one or two in there that are truly good. What the software achieves is to ensure that only those good ideas are truly considered, that they are evaluated properly, and that they are eventually implemented as well. Critical to remaining competitive for businesses today is to be able to have a competitive edge, and this means constantly developing new ideas and new processes throughout the organization.