Idea management software is used to receive ideas from employees, customers, and other stakeholders in an effort to improve the business as a whole. While anyone can be involved in that, employees and customers are the most common people to share their thoughts. But idea management software doesn’t just receive ideas. Rather, it is used to also evaluate them, test them, and implement them if appropriate.
Idea Management Software Options
While there still are companies that use a letter box that employees can send their ideas through, most understand that this isn’t inclusive enough. Employees who work in other offices, or who work remotely, for instance, cannot use these options. While various other options exist, proper idea management software is the most popular of all. This is an electronic system that enables people to share their ideas, and then follow them as they go through a system. Some companies even enable employees to vote for ideas that they believe to be particularly good.
Implementing Things Properly
Research has demonstrated that 70% of businesses know that innovation management should be a top strategic priority. However, exactly how to innovate and gather ideas often eludes them. Some may not know what to do with any generated ideas, others don’t know how to manage them, others still reject the wrong ones, and so on. Companies also often struggle to motivate their employees to actually share ideas.
If you have decided that you want to gather ideas, start by turning this into a project. You need to have a clear definition of what you aim to achieve. For instance, if your question would be “how can we improve our business?” the scope is simply too large. You would get ideas from changing the air freshener in the toilet, to developing a new product. If, however, you rephrase the question to “how can we improve our business by making employees more engaged over the Christmas period?”, you are being a lot more specific. Here, you will generate ideas such as Christmas parties, bonuses, time off, rotas, and other ideas that you can actually work with.
You also have to make sure that people know how they can submit their ideas, and when they have to be submitted by. Full clarity on the decision making process should also be included. And if an idea is turned down, an explanation as to why should be included, too. The most important thing, however, is that you give employees the chance to actually present their thoughts, and that these are respected. One way to achieve this is by enabling people to create an account within the company’s innovation management software, that allows them to remain anonymous.
You need to change your company’s culture so that people know that there is no such thing as a bad idea. Different companies achieve this in different ways, from 3M making every employee dedicated 15% of every working hour to coming up with new ideas, to Google having relaxation rooms so that people can put their mind on other things. But what matters is that ideas can be generated.