Idea management is the process of generating and capturing ideas from people inside or outside your organisation. This provides a central place where ideas are collected and stored and then evaluated before the best ones are selected and taken forward for development. There are many reasons why small businesses should pay attention to idea management, including:
Allows businesses to unearth the best ideas in the organisation
Helps you stay ahead of the competition
Gets feedback from your employees
Offers a way crowdsource answers to business problems
Helps develop a culture of open innovation
Getting feedback and ideas for improvement is especially important in the early stages of any business. Your team and advisors will have loads of great ideas for developing your product or service as well as ideas for getting your business up and running.
Traditionally the process of capturing ideas may have been done via an ideas suggestion box where ideas were submitted, a few may have been chosen for further development but rarely was there any feedback given on the outcome of the ideas. This type of system also left no room for wider collaboration or involvement of other employees.
These days there is specific idea software to make the job easier, more open, more collaborative - and more effective. Idea software enables the structured capture and evaluation of ideas within an organisation. The benefit for companies of any size lies in the ability to select and refine ideas that offer the greatest potential business value. Companies that manage this process effectively enjoy increased revenue and a more engaged, productive workforce.
If you are looking for idea software for your business, make sure you choose a tool that allows others in your organisation to feed back and collaborate on submitted ideas. This will help the ideas develop and will help you to start evaluating them. Having a central place that captures and stores ideas submitted by employees means that ideas can be discussed, shared, developed and signed off all in one place.
Whichever route you choose for your business, remember the right ideas can transform your business.
Simon Hill is CEO and co-founder of Wazoku, an idea software company, an Associate Director with the Venture Capital Firm FindInvestGrow and an active member of the London technology and entrepreneurial community.