Etesi News

Innovation Management in South Africa: An Inquiry

Derrick Herbst, Brian Barnard

Abstract

The study assesses innovation management in South African organizations, through semi-structured interviews. Some of the key attributes of innovation considered, include a) value proposition, b) organizational context, c) innovation process and management. Based on the interviews, some of the greatest challenges the organizations face are a) risk mitigation and management, b) innovation project evaluation and appraisal, as well as c) innovation process standardization and improvement. The conclusion is that innovation and innovation management still contain residual ambiguity. Still, there is always room at the top—organizations can still actively build their innovation competencies, from a range of dimensions, ranging from culture to process. No reason can be found why innovation can not be turned on itself—innovating innovation as organizational activity and competency.

 

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HYPE Success in the Finance and Insurance Industries

Project 1: Creating a culture of innovation at Al Rajhi Bank

Challenges

  • The largest bank within the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia and the Gulf Cooperation Council
  • One of the fastest growing banks in Saudi Arabia
  • Needed a way to bring 8,000 employees together
  • Wanted to create a creative culture across all 9 business locations
  • Wanted to create a culture that focuses on break-through innovation

Outcomes

  • Implemented HYPE across 8,000 employees
  • A focus on campaign based initiatives engaging employees on key business challenges such as: Increasing sales of pre-paid credit cards, motivating people to use local bill payment channels and enhancing their banking proposition for women.
  • Over 1,000 active participants in Arabic and English during the first phase
  • 9 new break-through, high-value innovations in implementation from the 1st year of operation
  • Employees now feel empowered to participate and submit their thoughts, the process and system offers greater comfort that their ideas will be considered carefully and treated with respect.

Project 2: Developing new ideas and promoting service development at PriceWaterhouseCoopers (Germany)

Challenges

  • Implement the four pillars of innovation management in every day work life: strategy, process, controlling, culture
  • Few campaigns run
  • Get all employees involved
  • Ensure sustainability to clients by detecting market development and changes at an early stage

Outcomes

  • Started in 2004/5 with “Innovation Days”
  • Launched Platform “Innovate every day 2.0″ in 2011 for all employees
  • Interdisciplinary taks forces for top topics

Activities today:

  • Bottom-up: workshops for employees, approach „innovate every day“, reward system „Innovators‘ Club“, Innovators Club Award for best idea of the year
  • Top-down: strategic task forces, innovation scouts, brainstorming sessions
  • Externally: Innovation Consulting Services

HYPE Success in the Telecommunication Industries

Project 3: NOKIA; One of the largest telecommunications companies in the world builds a global market place for innovations with HYPE

Challenges

  • No tool was used that could bring together the different stake holders from the different networks in 150 countries
  • The old stage gate process turned out to be a bottle neck, blocking potential breakthrough ideas
  • Not all needs of the different stakeholders regarding innovation management software could be met
  • Nokia Solutions Networks was not able to involve partners efficiently in the innovation process

Outcomes

  • Rearranged the process covered within HYPE from a process driven stage and gate approach into a community approach
  • Nokia Solutions Networks get 15% of their revenue from new products that were captured and developed within HYPE
  • HYPE brings together Nokia Solutions Networks employees and partners world wide to a community driven innovation network
  • With HYPE, 2000 valid ideas in two years and 500 Mio. € in revenue from implemented new product ideas within HYPE were generated