Innovation Management Software: 4 Essential Components

Businesses are rapidly realizing that innovation isn’t something that “strikes,” but something that can be encouraged, generated, and managed for the good of the company, its employees, and its customers.

Desk and chair.
Innovation colors outside the lines and thinks outside the box. Your innovation management software should help manage all the moving parts. 

People have always had ideas, but never before has it been so critical that companies know about those ideas, select the ones that have great potential, and develop them. As rapidly as the world is changing, a business must change too, and innovation is the key to making the changes that keep businesses relevant and thriving.

Innovation management software is a tool that more companies turn to once they realize the importance of putting innovation to work. Not all innovation management software meets client needs – including needs that clients may not know they have. When evaluating innovation management software, it’s important to look for these four essential components. 

1. Security

The importance of security to the innovation process cannot be overstated, particularly when companies partner with other companies, with schools, or with the general public. Always ask about innovation management software security and be certain it meets your current and future needs. Look for FedRAMP level security accreditation. 

This accreditation is from the Federal Risk and Authorization Management Program, a government-wide program that standardizes the approach to security, authorization, and monitoring for cloud-hosted products. FedRAMP security is mandatory for all federal agency cloud deployments, and when your innovation management software has this level of security, you can be confident in the security of your innovation initiatives.

2. Customization

Your innovation initiatives will be unlike anyone else’s. Even within your organization, you may have multiple unique innovation initiatives. Likewise, your innovation management software should support the level of customization you need to manage different workflows and innovation types. 

Man in a blue business suit pointing to a button labeled customize.
Can your innovation management software conform to your innovation initiatives?

For an HR innovation project, for example, ideas may need to go to certain people in the HR department. A simultaneous innovation project in engineering may need for ideas to go to the engineering department head. Your innovation management software should make it easy to customize innovation initiatives without your having to bring in your IT workers to help you do it. 

3. Access

Groundbreaking or disruptive ideas may come from anywhere, and your innovation initiatives should be accessible to everyone you want to participate. Check with innovation management software providers to see if they offer Section 508 compliance right out of the box, which ensures that information technology is accessible. 

Does the software offer great performance even in low-bandwidth areas (important when initiatives involve the general public)? Does it allow people to submit ideas on behalf of people who don’t have internet access? Can it validate language translation so that you can solicit ideas internationally? You may not need all these capabilities this time, but you very well could in a year or two.

4. Integration

Innovation management software shouldn’t be an “island.” Successful innovation often depends on breaking down barriers between departmental silos, and the software you use to manage innovation should likewise integrate with other systems. When evaluating innovation management software, learn about its API. Find out whether it can plug into other business systems for tasks like gathering idea data or exporting information to project or data management tools. 

More companies are realizing the value of innovation management software so they can discover, develop, and implement the ideas that will make tomorrow better. IdeaScale fulfills the four essentials listed above and much more. If you would like to learn more, why not request a demo? And if you have questions, please contact us at any time.

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