How to Spend Smart on Corporate Innovation

Spend Smart with Open Innovation

With innovation becoming a more prominent player in overall corporate strategy and many innovation leaders still needing to prove their value to the rest of the management team, it is crucial to approach the potentially expensive endeavor of corporate innovation smartly.

Learn more about the evolving role of the Head of Innovation

Spending smartly when it comes to innovation creates a better chance of getting corporate buy-in for innovation initiatives and increases the possibilities for your innovation team.

Here is the best way to get the most value out of your innovation budget so your innovation team can be productive and continue to grow.

High Innovation Spend Vs. Smart Innovation Spend

Spending a lot on innovation ensures investors, industry stakeholders and customers that your company is influential and forward-thinking. It also signals to competitors and potential partners alike that your company has new and potentially unexpected offerings on the horizon.

But while sending these messages to the market, you also want to get the most value out of the innovation spend. The biggest innovation spenders of 2017 — Amazon, Alphabet, Intel, Samsung and Volkswagen — all spend smartly by focusing their efforts on open innovation.

Spending smart means getting the most bang for your innovation buck. Click To Tweet

Open innovation is a decentralized approach defined by collaborating with other companies that have the knowledge and/or capabilities they need to innovate.

Recent studies and reports clearly show the benefits of collaborating with external technology solutions. Working with vendors that complement your company’s core product, knowledge base and ecosystem is both efficient and a growth opportunity to reach new audiences.

Spend Smart with Open Innovation

Spending smart means getting the most bang for your innovation buck. You want to make sure that your innovation activities provide you with as much expertise and information as possible.

To do this, 61% of companies use open innovation. There is an abundance of forward-thinking complementary technology solutions that can help enterprises address their innovation needs more efficiently and effectively — whether that be pursuing endeavors that will change the market or creating a new industry altogether.

At an enterprise level, proof-of-concepts are the foundation of open innovation. Click To Tweet

Collaborating with startups and other independent software vendors to innovate gives each partner the opportunity to focus on what they are best at, and saves the enterprise the time, energy and money it would take to develop a technology that already exists externally.

Decide Where to Spend Your Innovation Dollars

Each of the top five innovation spenders of 2017 invested heavily in external innovation because the best results and the best ideas stem from the cross-vertical expertise and diverse perspectives that come with collaboration.

 

Free Report: How the Top Innovation
Spenders Invest Their Resources

 

Picking which types of companies to go after is a matter of market vision and company strategy. When you have established what challenge you want to address or direction you want to progress in, you can define innovation goals and draw up a plan for how to achieve them.

For example, Amazon strives to be the most customer-centric company, so it met the customers where they are — in supermarkets and clothing stores. On the other hand, Intel wanted to be more data-centric, so it made its way to companies in verticals that depend on data like IoT and cloud computing.

Manage Your Entire Proof-of-Concept Process on One Platform

At an enterprise level, proof-of-concepts are the foundation of open innovation. Enterprises need to test and evaluate external technologies before implementing them and using them on a larger scale.

For years, technology testing and evaluation was the slowest and most frustrating part of pushing a company forward.

Running proof-of-concepts on a proof-of-concept platform saves you time, money and effort in the technology adoption process Click To Tweet

But now, running proof-of-concepts on a proof-of-concept platform can actually save you time, money and effort in the technology adoption process. A PoC platform like prooV allows you to intuitively manage the entire PoC process in one place.

When the entire process — from creating the testing environment and discovering qualified technology vendors to testing and evaluating multiple technologies at once — is centralized and streamlined on one platform, it becomes much more efficient and the road to technology implementation becomes much shorter.

Spend and Innovate Wisely

Innovation spend is a tricky subject. On one hand, keeping spending low increases the chances of securing internal buy-in for innovation initiatives.

On the other hand, high innovation spend signals to investors, competitors and potential partners alike that your company has new and potentially unexpected offerings on the horizon.

But while sending these messages to internal stakeholders and to the market, you want to get the most bang for your innovation buck.

Spending smartly by understanding your innovation goals and streamlining the proof-of-concept process will ensure that those innovation dollars go a long way.

About the author

Joanna Alter is the Head of Content at prooV. She is fascinated by the process behind everything from songs to sunsets to softwares, and thinks coffee tastes best on ice.