It’s amazing how rapidly things change: ten years ago we didn’t have Uber, meal delivery kits, or Stranger Things. Now it’s hard to imagine life without them. It’s tough to keep up – especially when big things appear over the course of days, weeks, and years. A lot happened in 2020 and we’re on pace for a lot more to happen in 2021 – and even though it can be intimidating to take it one thing at a time, it’s positively dizzying to look back on history cumulatively.
Which is sort of how I felt as I looked back over the feature release notes for 2020. IdeaScale employs the principles of agile development, which means our software product develops iteratively and collaboratively over time. Our team releases new updates sometimes multiple times a week, which means the product is always getting better, but when we looked at all of the new options presented to our customers and community members altogether, you realize that the prevailing themes for development are finding new ways of delighting users and influencing culture, making sense of large swaths of data enterprise-wide, and offering new opportunities to customize and configure programs that are trying to extend their scope.
The full list of new features is included at the end of this article, but I wanted to call special attention to our most popular new features of 2020.
Data matters to a crowdsourced innovation program and our activity trends dashboard helps measure engagement. These changes will allow for additional focus on specific campaigns or actions. This new feature means that administrators can select which groups of data they would like to compare and track: campaigns, groups, dates, and more allowing for more granular analysis and more precise insights.
One of the key reasons that members participate in collaborative initiatives is recognition: from their colleagues, from their managers, and even external recognition. IdeaScale decided to create a new peer-to-peer recognition feature when we released kudos that allows anyone in the community to offer tracked praise to someone for their or comments. It’s all tracked in a leaderboard and the positivity is transparent to anyone else in the community.
Do you ever have an idea right when you receive a call to participate in an innovation challenge, but you’re already working your inbox? With the Submit via Email feature, idea authors can now compose their idea in the body of an email and send it to their drafts folder within the innovation community for future refinement. Don’t worry – you’ll get reminders that you have ideas in your drafts folder.
The concept of linking ideas seems simple (and gentler than merging two ideas together), but typifying the type of “link” is what really makes this tool useful. For example, is a particular idea a fragment of a larger concept or similar to another idea? With Linked Ideas it’s now possible to see the web of relationships between ideas that form larger trends and concepts.
Power BI is the leading business analytics tool in the market. Now IdeaScale has a native integration with Power BI, which will allow administrators to access rich IdeaScale data within Power BI. The integration will come with a pre-built set of dashboards, but administrators will also be able to slice their data and customize additional report. I saw tons of sample dashboards which visualized crowd data in meaningful (and surprising) ways this year thanks to this integration!
Full 2020 New Feature Release List:
- Revamped Activity Trends
- Idea Portfolio Improvements
- Revised In-App Notification System
- Configurable Calls to Action
- Configurable Campaign Imagery
- Idea Inactivity Email
- Campaigns Automation Builder
- Persistent Scroll on Ideas and campaigns
- Submit Next Idea
- Linked Ideas
- Trending + Top 10 Trending Ideas
- Member Profile Updates
- Implemented and Selected Labels
- Search commands for Incoming Content
- Analyze Text
- Basic/Advanced Feature Sets
- Revamped Community Settings Sidebar
- 3D Printer File Attachments
- Import/Export Languages Strings
- Power BI Beta
- Submit Via Email
- Rename Title and Description
- Tags Tab