Open innovation allows organizations to add internal and external resources to their capacity for innovation. The goal is to obtain benefits or achieve competitive advantages in their environment, such as more knowledge and a better offer in their market, or contributing to the achievement of improvements that influence society and people’s lives.
Although the most reasonable application of open innovation may seem to be the co-creation of new products and services with different groups of collaborators, the following is a review of some of its other applications.
Co-creative design of products and services with external collaborators.
One of the great advantages of open innovation is the access it provides to sources of external talent. The generation of an innovation ecosystem with an organization’s different stakeholders enables an expanded perspective for innovation, by adding voices from outside the organization (more diversity, disruptive thinking and ‘out of the box’ ideas), and by multiplying the number of brains working on a solution.
It also speeds up an organization’s capacity for innovation and reduces the time to market in the launch of new products and services, as well as their development costs.
That is why more and more organizations, regardless of their sector, are open to co-creating with their collaborators through channels that allow them to capture and develop new ideas swiftly.
Development and application of an internal culture of innovation
Innovation is a key value for any organization that wishes to stand out in its sector and set itself apart from the competition. It therefore seems reasonable to think that it should be applied to the maximum number of possible areas, thus multiplying its impact.
Taking innovation beyond the office, and making the entire organization participate in it, is a first step to achieve this goal. And there are many advantages.
Collaborative innovation, open to all members of an organization, regardless of their area or rank, enables a better use of internal talent, helps to detect intrapreneurs, promotes collaboration and breaks down silos; in short, it speeds up an organization’s transformation.
Banco Sabadell, innovation open to internal talent.
Banco Sabadell has used an ideas community for a decade, open to participation from employees. This channel allows the bank to address its geographical fragmentation and contributes to the generation of an internal culture of innovation. The community has shared over 28,000 ideas and given rise to several evolutionaryquick wins.
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Capture trends and insights on a large scale.
Apart from gathering new ideas, the creation of open collaboration networks with different stakeholders also gives access to relevant information on the market and consumers.
Gathering insights on a large scale, from vast audiences or from a segmented target group, provides organizations with knowledge about trends and precise market information, to make relevant decisions or detect business opportunities.
Creating a community around a brand and consumer interests is a common resource. It promotes co-creation and understanding between the brand and its market, thus producing a value offer that is better adapted to real needs. For example, in the hotel sector, Hotusa Group uses a community to co-create the hotels of the future with its clients.
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How to obtain insights and ideas to innovate with consumers.
Public-Private alliances with an impact on society
Lastly, open innovation has other potential applications that further explore the alliance of the public and private sectors, bringing improvements for the collective.
Partnerships between institutions and private business, as well as collaboration with startups and entrepreneurs, among others, enable the generation of an open ecosystem that can give rise to new ideas and mobilize the necessary resources to drive them forward, creating positive changes in society.
Building a city in community.
Santander is an example of a city that is open to listening to its citizens and the different collectives present in the city. To do so, it uses Santander City Brain, a platform where the administration joins forces with those citizens and collectives to build a more resilient and sustainable future for the city, in community.
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