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Tag: crowdsourced innovation

Announcing the 2016 Innovation Management Award Winners

innovation-winners

Having received some fantastic entries, we have officially chosen and are extremely pleased to share our winners for the 2016 Innovation Management Awards. And because we got so many great submissions, for the first time ever, we have also selected runner ups for each category!

City of Calgary—Best Engagement Strategy

The City of Calgary is the winner of the Best Engagement Strategy for their myCityInnovation campaign, an internal program which is part of the broader City innovation program Civic Innovation YYC. In order to increase engagement, the City launched a multi-channel campaign to inform employees and get them involved. This campaign spanned all methods of communication, including social media, newsletters, events, emails and more. Furthermore, this push for engagement and communication continued throughout the entirety of the campaign, rather than focusing exclusively on the start of the campaign. With regular messages sent to the internal community, the City was able to keep potential innovators interested and aware of the campaign, and greatly exceed their target numbers for ideas submitted and engagement reached. Click here to find out more about the city of Calgary and their myCityInnovation initiative.

Oak Ridge National Laboratory—Best Moderation Strategy

Oak Ridge National Laboratory is the winner of the Best Moderation Strategy for their JUMP campaign. JUMP stands for Join the discussion, Unveil innovation, Motivate transformation, Promote technology-to-market. Oak Ridge is the largest science and energy national lab in the Department of Energy system, and the goal of JUMP was to broaden the pool of people from whom the DOE seeks ideas, and to move the ideas to marketplace faster. Jump crafted an incredibly detailed plan for moderation of submitted ideas, starting with a five phase schedule, the development of five roles within the community, the screening of ideas for applicability and appropriateness, and criteria for the evaluation of ideas. Click here to find out more about the Oak Ridge National Laboratory and their JUMP campaign.

National Cancer Institute—Best Innovation

The National Cancer Institute is the winner of Best Innovation for their Cancer Research Ideas campaign, in support of the Cancer Moonshot proposed by President Obama in January 2016. The Cancer Moonshot was proposed with a goal of accelerating progress against cancer by a decade in just five years. The Cancer Research Ideas community brought together the research community and the general public to submit ideas on how best to prevent, diagnose, and treat cancer. The result of the campaign was a final report which presented 10 transformative research recommendations for achieving the Cancer Moonshot’s goal, including recommendations for improving patient quality of life as well as suggestions for most useful research areas. Click here to find out more about the National Cancer Institute and the Cancer Research Ideas campaign.

Congratulations to our winners! To read more about each of our winners, and to find out about our runners-up (Dick’s Sporting Goods, Department of Labor, and Standard Bank), visit our 2016 Innovation Management Awards page.

What We Learned

Two trends that are common among our three winners are clearly articulated goals from the outset, and active participation from moderators to reach the best conclusions. All three of our winners entered their innovation campaigns with specific outcomes in mind. As a result, they were able to frontload the planning of the engagement and moderation of their campaigns, leading them all to exceed the quantitative expectations they had set for themselves. Additionally, all three of our winners found that active participation from moderators meant the best possible ideas at the end. By engaging innovators at all levels of idea suggestion, by soliciting conversation amongst the community, by asking clarifying questions to further develop ideas, by developing plans for engagement of potential innovators not already part of the community, moderators were able to elevate the discourse and the value of presented ideas.

When possible, winners in each category receive an Apple Watch, a 5% discount on their 2017 subscription, a VIP pass to IdeaScale’s 2017 Open Nation Conference, a free IdeaBuzz challenge, and a promotional PR packet.

What might your organization do to be more engaging, have better moderation, and implement the best innovation?

Do you Know the 10 Aspects that Influence Innovation?

innovation competencyIn today’s extraordinarily fast-paced world, it’s more important than ever to be as competitive as possible. It is much easier to be competitive by preparing your employees and the corporate culture in general for the unique challenges and benefits of innovation, and pursing with vigor potential areas for growth every day.

This 10-question survey tests an organization’s innovation competency against 10 qualities. These 10 aspects tend to fall into two big categories: organizational culture and ease of participation.

Organizational culture is essential to creating an environment for successful innovation initiatives. After all, if you haven’t set the stage organizationally, how can you expect your employees to feel supported and interested in participating? Some of the aspects that influence innovation that fall into this category are whether the leadership inspires the employees, and whether cross-boundary collaboration is encouraged and new ideas are adopted quickly.

As we’ve found with Innovation Management Award winners, by making things as easy as possible for your innovators, you are increasing the likelihood that they will actually BE your innovators. Some of the aspects that influence innovation that fall into this category are whether employees have a platform for sharing ideas and receiving feedback, and whether those employees feel supported (both by the leadership and with funding) to try new ideas.

At the end of the survey, after you have entered your responses, you will be provided with areas in which your organization is doing well. You will also be provided with expanded information on areas for improvement. Perhaps your organization could be better about making it easy for employees to participate in innovation. Perhaps you could be better at distributing pertinent market information company-wide so that employees are well aware of the industry happenings. Or perhaps you can include innovation benchmark goals as part of the metrics for management reviews.

You can take the aforementioned introductory 10-question survey, of course. However, this is just the beginning step that you can take on the road to setting yourself up for success. Click here to find out more about evaluating company-wide innovation fitness, to ensure your organization is in the best shape to make real progress.

One More Week to Submit to the Innovation Management Awards

innovation-management-deadlineAs we wrap up this election cycle, another deadline is right around the corner – the deadline for submissions to the 2016 Innovation Management Awards!

If you’re still debating whether you should submit, or if you’ve already submitted your organization and are awaiting the results, here are some of the lessons that we’ve learned from past Innovation Management Award winners that you can take to heart for the future.

Have a Plan

When it comes to having an effective, efficient innovation campaign, arguably the number one most important aspect is having a plan, and have that plan developed prior to beginning the campaign. This means thinking through all aspects of engagement, moderation, enactment, tracking, rewards if applicable. How are you going to get your employees and/or consumers involved in the campaign? How are you going to sift through innovation ideas once people start suggesting them? How are you going to decide on winning idea(s)? How are you going to track the implementation and enactment of ideas, to see exactly how effective they are? How are you going to reward participants for their participation? These, and many more, are all questions that should be considered and answered before you even start a campaign. As we’ve seen, when you have strategies in place from the start, you’re helping yourself succeed.

All three of our winners from the 2014 Innovation Management Awards had exemplary plans in place for their campaigns, specifically with relation to social media outreach and engagement. The Department of Labor thought through three specific phases of their campaign, and the latter two phases including utilizing social media as a way of examining the accessibility of that media. The Department of Energy used their Twitter account to garner approximately 11% of the Sunshot Catalyst campaign’s members. Scentsy used social media to promote successfully completed ideas, in turn encouraging the community to get involved and be involved in the future.

Make It Easy

Another important facet of having a successful campaign is how easy you make it for your community to participate. This goes somewhat into having a plan – if you’ve thought ahead well enough, you will hopefully have thought about the path of least resistance for those that you would most like to hear from. If you’re attempting to engage employees, perhaps set aside a half an hour every day specifically for employees to create and share ideas. If you’re hoping to engage a wider community, maybe make a “cheat sheet” of step-by-step instructions for participation. If you have satellite locations for your organization, create easily shareable communications for them to pass along to their individual communities. Innovators are more likely to be involved if they can spend their actual time innovating and surfacing ideas rather than struggling with the logistics of being involved.

Focus on Inclusivity and Transparency

As in many areas of life, we seem to be striving more and more for inclusivity and transparency, perhaps related to our continual struggle to remedy past inequities and prevent them in the future. Whatever the reason, it’s a step in the right direction. This focus is a commonality amongst our winners, and is a good indicator that you might be a powerful candidate for the Innovation Management Awards. All three of our 2015 Innovation Management Award winners focused on these two important attributes for their campaigns. Both the Making All Voices Count and Innovate Your State campaigns were looking to engage citizens in ways that could make their experiences better, specifically in ways that could increase representation and government accountability and transparency. The Western Australia Police found that the transparency during their process increased participation, even when that transparency involved constructive criticism.

So if you have a plan, make it easy, and focus on inclusivity and transparency, you’re a perfect fit. Be sure to submit your organization to the 2016 Innovation Management Awards by Friday, November 18. You can find more information and enter your submission here.

Innovating for Small Business Saturday

Innovating for Small Business SaturdayCould a single day make the difference in your entire year? When it comes to Small Business Saturday, the answer is definitely yes. On November 26, 2016, you’ll have a unique opportunity to capitalize on small business shoppers in your area. Innovating for a successful Small Business Saturday can improve your bottom line – especially if you start now.

Think Creatively 

The first step is to consider what’s worked in the past and what tactics you’ll employ this year. Think about your efforts during the last Small Business Saturday. What was effective? What wasn’t? What are some unique ways you can capitalize on the good while eliminating the bad? What new outreach ideas have you learned from this year that you can include? Be sure to ask the experts, your employees, who often have direct feedback from customers that they can share.

Secondly, consider who you could work with. Other companies that have similar customer bases, and offer complementary products or services, are great partners. If you have a retail store, consider what businesses are nearby that would make good partners. Be sure to approach them soon so that you can coordinate your efforts well in advance. The added benefit is shared marketing costs.

Finally, reflect on what additional offers you can make to bring people into your store. You can go beyond discounts and coupons. Consider a gift for visiting your store, a buy one get one, or even a free report or article that is of interest to your customers.

Create a Small Business Saturday Innovation Team 

Consider creating a Small Business Saturday innovation team. It doesn’t have to be a large team. If you’re a smaller business, your team could include someone who’s familiar with marketing and another person who works directly with customers.

This team could work to create something truly unique using innovation methods described in our Innovation Academy. Whatever you decide, make sure that roles and responsibilities are established as well as a budget for marketing, coupons, gifts, or special prizes.

Create a Small Business Saturday Plan 

When you plan for Small Business Saturday, be thinking about the entire season and not just a single day. When you think beyond Small Business Saturday, and make a comprehensive plan that includes the whole holiday season and beyond, you’ll see greater success.

Perhaps your plan includes a quick how-to video or special do-it-yourself projects that can only be done in your store. Maybe you’ll create a Small Business Saturday BINGO card or treasure hunt that requires customers to visit your store along with other stores that you’ve partnered with. Once customers are in your store, you can greet them with water, coffee, or treats to encourage them to stay longer. The sky is the limit.

The other thing to consider is how to get customers to come back to your store after the holiday season. Many savvy retailers give out coupons during the holiday season that give a discount or special bonus for shopping after the first of the year, while others offer a mobile app or punch card for repeat purchases. This gets customers to come back to your store, which not only adds to your bottom line but also increases the chance of converting a one-time shopper into a frequent buyer.

Continue to Stay Top of Mind 

Leading up to Small Business Saturday, and throughout the holiday season and beyond, it’s important to stay top of mind with customers. As a small business, you don’t have the large budget and advertising reach of the bigger retailers. However, there are two tactics that can make a difference for you: social media and email marketing.

With social media, you can not only stay visible, but you can target specific customers in your area. With Facebook Ads, you can choose geographic location, special interests, job titles, income, and more. When you reach more people with ads, blog posts, and other interesting content, you can grow your audience and expand your influence. This will help you get better sales on Small Business Saturday and throughout the year.

Email marketing has shown to be very effective as it allows you to send personalized messages to thousands of people. When you use intriguing headlines, you’ll get more people opening and reading your emails.

When you arm your innovative Small Business Saturday team with tools and resources like social media and email marketing, you can reach the people who are most interested in what you have to offer. But, the time to start innovating and preparing for Small Business Saturday is now. Download the Crowdsourcing for Small Business white paper to learn how you can use crowdsourcing for innovating on this special day and beyond.

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Non-Profit Crowdsourcing: Going Beyond Crowdfunding

Non-Profit Crowdsourcing: Going Beyond CrowdfundingWhen you think about using crowdsourcing for your non-profit, what do you think of? If you’re like many program managers and directors, you think about fundraising. While crowdfunding – the money side of crowdsourcing – can certainly be effective, it’s important to expand your vision. Non-profit crowdsourcing goes well beyond crowdfunding.

Non-profit volunteers and your surrounding community are often passionate about the mission and purpose of your organization. They’ll often contribute to and share crowdsourcing activities with friends and family. This can help expand the reach of your non-profit and gain you additional supporters – both financially and otherwise.

Types of Non-Profit Crowdsourcing

When thinking about how the community and the larger crowd can benefit your organization, it’s important to be aware of the variety of crowdsourcing projects. Here are five specific types of non-profit crowdsourcing that can help:

  • Pooling collective knowledge to help solve problems. Do you wonder how to maximize space in your building but don’t have resources to hire a planner or architect? There are many in your community who would volunteer ideas.
  • Micro-volunteering. Some people in your area would love to volunteer but are afraid of the time commitment. By creating small tasks that take only a few minutes, you can harness these volunteers and benefit your organization.
  • Crowd Creation. If you need a new idea for outreach or impact, your community can help you come up with ideas.
  • Crowd Voting. Have some options but can’t decide? Put it to a public vote. This will also help you get support and funding for the chosen project since you’ve built awareness up front.
  • Crowdfunding. A traditional form of non-profit crowdsourcing, it involves raising money by asking donors to contribute to a single online site. This is often done for a focused project or initiative, and may involve bonuses for the donors.

 

The Impact of Using Non-Profit Crowdsourcing 

As you can see, non-profit crowdsourcing goes far beyond funding. In fact, using crowdsourcing can help your organization gain a variety of benefits far beyond money. When you use the other four types of non-profit crowdsourcing, you can gain:

  • Trust and Loyalty. People feel a bond to projects they contribute to, and that can help your organization succeed long-term. You also build trust when you ask for community input beyond finances.
  • Reach and Engagement. Because non-financial crowdsourcing goes beyond asking for money, it will be more widely shared and may gain much more participation than other initiatives. Because your mission and purpose are being shared with so many people, you’ll gain new supporters.
  • Brand Awareness. Are you tired of people not knowing what your organization is or what it stands for? Crowdsourcing will help get your name out to the public in new ways.
  • Volunteerism. People love to give back. In fact, altruism is one of the core reasons crowd workers participate in crowdsourcing. Beyond a specific project, crowdsourcing can also help you gain more long-term volunteers.
  • Donations. Of course, the more people who know your organization, trust you, and are loyal to you, the more likely they are to donate. A non-financial crowdsourcing program can result in financial benefits down the line.

Interested in more? We have specific case studies of how other non-profits are using IdeaScale for non-profit crowdsourcing. Learn more by looking at the Cerebral Palsy Alliance and Making All Voices Count. You can also download our free Crowdsourcing for Non-profits e-book.

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Win a Free Innovation Consultation

innovation consultation obstacleInnovation can breathe new life into any organization, but it’s not always a smooth ride when implementing an innovation program. There can be many obstacles along the way. Here are three big stumbling blocks that are encountered when enacting innovation programs, and an opportunity for a free innovation consultation!

1. Lack of planning. One of the first obstacles that many come across is a lack of planning, specifically when it comes to what happens after ideas are submitted to an innovation campaign. Not having a clear idea of what will happen after ideas are submitted, what the timeline will be, what kind of feedback can be expected, how many ideas will be implemented, how will winning ideas be determined, who will be facilitating ideation—both within the administration of the campaign and among the participants—can lead to frustration and gridlock. It can also lead your participants to feel unappreciated and less likely to want to be involved in future campaigns when they don’t have a clear idea of what will happen beyond the idea gathering phase. If you don’t have a clearly devised plan for the “during” and “after” of innovation, you’re going to have a very difficult time, because as we know, when you fail to plan, you plan to fail.

2. Building a crowd. Innovation experts know that one of the hardest parts of crowdsourcing is finding, maintaining and engaging a crowd. The road to the finish line of an innovation campaign may be paved with good intentions, but if nobody shows up, it’s not making a difference. This obstacle can also intersect with a lack of planning and lead to almost certain failure.

3. Failure to communicate. This road block meets up with the previous two and can severely derail an innovation campaign. If you have not thought through your desired participation audience in the planning stages, how can you know where to reach out to them or how to communicate to them? Is email the most effective method of communication? Social media, physical mailings, cat memes? If you don’t communicate to the crowd that you’re hoping to cultivate, how will they know that you want them to participate?

So you’ve identified one of the three above often-mentioned obstacles to successful innovation, or possibly another obstacle, and now you’re looking to determine where you go from here. Interested in getting some outside insight on your innovation program? Looking for some advice on how to avoid these obstacles from the beginning, or recover from running into them while innovating? Click here for a chance to win a free innovation consultation with the IdeaScale innovation architects!

Where to Look for Sustainability Solutions

erm sustainabilityIn today’s world, the market is more competitive than almost ever before. Consumers have so many options when it comes to goods and services that they focus more on the “best of” above all else. In order to maintain sustainability as a business, companies must be adaptable and flexible in an ever-changing, adapting marketplace. Whereas new ideas used to be generated and investigated by specialized research and development teams, companies have realized that there is perhaps a better pool of innovators which they can tap into: all of their employees.

As is true with finding creative solutions to problems, employees are best equipped to recommend suggestions for potential offerings to clients. Environmental Resources Management (ERM) is a leading global provider of environmental, health, safety, risk, social consulting services and sustainability related services. They recently implemented their Innovation Tournament, engaging employees around the world in recommending potential expansions of offerings. ERM had a 69% participation rate, with more than 3,000 employees contributing and 465 new ideas presented. Of these 465 ideas, 25 were presented as shortlist options, eventually whittled down to five finalists, and a final winning suggestion to be implemented. ERM is holding onto all of the suggestions, though, and keeping them in mind for future implementation.

While staying competitive in the marketplace is obviously very important, another of the most significant aspects of sustainability, that of internal innovation and efficiency, is often overlooked. It’s easy to only focus on being external-facing in your innovation because that seems to have the most immediate impact on an organization; however, if you don’t have the internal infrastructure to back up those new innovations, or you are always stagnating with clunky, dated systems of accomplishing things, you’re not likely to make it very far on external innovations alone. ERM realized this was true, and though their Innovation Tournament was primarily focused on market-facing ideas, it was also open to suggestions on how to improve internal processes as well.

Ultimately, employees of ERM—or employees of any organization—are best positioned to suggest possible solutions because they have the ingredients for successful innovation: the institutional knowledge (to realize what may be feasible, to remain on brand while also providing expansions, etc.) and the investment in the organization to care about finding solutions.

To find out more about sustainability, and how ERM is tapping into employee knowledge for solutions, click here to download our recent case study.

How to Use Crowdsourcing in Small Business

How to Use Crowdsourcing in Small Business Crowdsourcing has become more common in business, but many still misunderstand it. Too many small business owners think that crowdsourcing and crowdfunding are the same thing, and think of it as only a resource to raise money for their business. While gaining funding is certainly one kind of crowdsourcing, crowdsourcing as a whole has greater uses.

By understanding how crowdsourcing can be used for your small business, you’ll be able to capture the fullness of the resources available in the crowd. This will allow you to innovate and implement new ideas, processes, and methods into your business without investing enormous amounts of money.

Starting a Crowdsourcing Project: Teamwork and a Planning 

The first two things you need to use crowdsourcing in your small business is to have a team of people to create and manage the project, and to create a plan around what you want to accomplish and how you plan to use the crowd to do so.

The team that you assemble should have good diversity and represent the major stakeholders in the project. This could include representatives from IT, sales, marketing, and development. If you have a small company, you’ll select individuals that can work together as a team to brainstorm, implement solutions, and make recommendations.

Next, you should think about what the plan is for the crowdsourcing project. Your plan should include the following elements, along with a timeframe for accomplishment:

  • Goal: What is the problem you’d like crowd help to solve? Are you looking to solve a problem internally with input from employees, develop a new product with input from external sources, or improve an existing product with input both internally and externally?
  • Execution: There are several ways to do crowdsourcing. You could do surveys, a contest, use crowdsourcing to get manual tasks completed or data collected, and much more. Decide what type of crowdsourcing you plan to use.
  • Incentive: While the external crowd is more internally motivated than your employees, you’ll still need some kind of incentive for participating in your project. This could be financial, a specific kind of recognition, or company swag.
  • Security and Compliance: It’s important to plan for how you’re going to keep your ideas protected and your company information secure as you invite the crowd to help you in your business. Generally, this requires a combination of IT and legal advice, or you can use a pre-existing crowdsourcing platform that a has protection built in.

Completing a Crowdsourcing Project: Implementation and Follow-up 

Completing a crowdsourcing project has seven stages, and as you go through each one, your team will need to be actively involved to keep ideas moving through the process. It’s also important to keep any and all stakeholders updated on how the process is going, including contributors.

Here are the seven stages of implementing and following up on a crowdsourcing project:

  • Ideate: Participants – internal, external, or both – submit their ideas and suggestions to your company based on the type of crowdsourcing and platform you’ve chosen. This can include design ideas, suggestions, and more.
  • Team Evaluation: Once the process of ideation has begun, the most promising ideas are evaluated by your team – or, if you have several complex ideas to review, one team is assigned per idea.
  • Refine Stage: The most promising ideas are refined and evaluated, and the best ideas are made into formal proposals.
  • Estimate Stage: Each proposal has a cost and benefit analysis showing the estimated cost and benefit to the company if it is chosen to be implemented.
  • Review Stage: Experts – either the team you created or additional subject matter experts – review the proposals and cost-benefit analysis and choose a winning idea.
  • Fund Stage: Funding is secured from your organization to implement the idea, and any benefits, prizes, or winnings are paid to the innovator.
  • Archive Stage: Any ideas that are worthwhile but cannot be acted on immediately are archived and kept for later review and possible implementation.

This process sounds more complex than it is for most small businesses. In many smaller organizations, there aren’t as many stakeholders or as many layers of approval needed to move forward with a new idea. As a result, small businesses often benefit from crowdsourcing even more than larger ones.

Crowdsourcing isn’t just a way to raise money. It’s much, much more – a way to gain new ideas, innovate, and even expand your team temporarily without significant capital investment. As a small business, you can’t afford to let your size keep you from innovating and implementing the best new ideas. Crowdsourcing gives you a way to access those ideas without having to have a million-dollar budget.

For more information about how to use crowdsourcing for your small business, download our Crowdsourcing for Small Business whitepaper today!

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The Case for Innovation

why-innovate

George Bernard Shaw once said, “Progress is impossible without change.” The man was witty and wise. And still, even though his words are true, we can all be resistant to change. Nobody loves change. It’s understandable that a person would want to dig in their heels and say, “This is the way it’s always been done, so I don’t see any reason to fix what isn’t broken.” But just because something isn’t broken doesn’t mean it’s necessarily working to 100% of its potential. And the best way to make sure it IS working to 100% of a thing’s potential is to constantly be evaluating and considering ways in which it might be better, more efficient, more useful, more cost-saving.

There are two main places where innovation can help you out: overall fiscal and brand health, and external results of innovation. All of the possible benefits or reasons for innovating can be filtered into these two categories. Innovation has been shown to help organizations stay competitive. Unlike fifty years ago, we live in a remarkably connected environment, which makes the marketplace even more saturated with competitors. If you’re not willing to adapt and innovate with the flow of things, you’re sure to be consumed by the market. In fact, in the decade between 1999 and 2009, nearly half of the Fortune 500 companies lost their positions as a result of their failure to keep up. Related to that, being open to innovation allows companies to remain relevant. If you’re entire organization is built around a certain product that becomes obsolete, you’re going to have to roll with the punches and come up with a new product or risk falling by the wayside.

Innovation has also been shown to directly impact the bottom line. This is where the quantitative comes in. Want to save money? The answer is yes. Well, companies that innovate are likely going to be saving money. For example, every dollar spent on newer medicines reduces healthcare spending overall by $7.20. That’s a remarkable benefit for relatively little cost, and it wouldn’t be possible without that investment in the new medicines.

Beyond those internal bonuses, innovation can help your external image as well. Vastly, consumers are behind innovation, and believe that it’s widely beneficial. Nine out of 10 consumers have a better perception of brands who include them in the innovation process, and 71% of millennials believe that business innovation improves society. Far and wide, people like to feel that their voices are heard, and they feel that hearing a wider range of voices makes society better. Plus, there’s that reduction in healthcare costs, so that’s a definite improvement to society.

Basically what it boils down to is that we live in a constantly changing, evolving world. If you aren’t willing to innovate and be adaptable, you will almost certainly be left behind. A great place to find a culture that values innovation is the IdeaScale innovation community. Find out more and join here.

Why Should the Public Vote on the Ideas of Government Employees?

texas hhsThese days, it’s easy to feel apathetic and frustrated by politics and government in general. It often feels as though your voice is not heard, that special interests and corporations are more important than the citizens at large. But luckily, there are factions of the government that are realizing the futility folks are feeling, and are working to make the government work for the people again.

One of the ways this is happening is with public engagement on the ideas of government employees. A few short years ago, the state of Texas enacted legislation that requires any state agency with 1,500 or more employees to provide a process by which an employee may submit suggestions and ideas for cost savings and allow the public to vote on those ideas. Who doesn’t love cost saving? And who doesn’t love their voice being heard on cost saving ideas? What a win-win scenario.

The Texas Health and Human Services System selected IdeaScale as its platform, and has been actively promoting and engaging with citizens to find areas to improve efficiency and reduce costs. Since the program was started, there have been over 1,400 ideas, with over 1,100 citizens logging over 16,000 votes. Now that’s a response!

Initiatives such as this serve a dual purpose of not only reducing costs, but also of engaging citizens in decisions that have a real impact on their lives, and allowing them a voice. After being involved in such a process, it wouldn’t be surprising if those citizens are more likely to participate in other civic situations where they might have previously been discouraged.

To read more about the Texas Health and Human Services initiative for saving money for their citizens, click here to download the recent case study.