Innovation is the critical driver of business growth, and business partners expect IT to work collaboratively and to be ready to convert innovative ideas into noticeable benefits such as faster processes and cutting-edge business models. For IT organizations, this means bringing the best ideas to fruition quickly, scalably, and securely so they create business value.
IT Innovation: The Basics
Don't Try to Control Innovation—Support It
Many IT organizations try to generate ideas, with the implicit assumption that standard delivery processes will be enough to get the new solution up and running. This approach, however, does not lead to innovation. Most of the initiatives in the IT portfolio are not new and are already used by competitors. Additionally, existing delivery processes are too slow while IT teams tend to focus on the technology and lose sight of the outcome.
Progressive IT organizations instead recognize that the rest of the business has no shortage of innovative ideas and IT's can create more value by shifting their focus to support the best innovative ideas from where-ever they originate in the company.
Key ways IT departments can create a foundation for consistent innovation:
- Triage New Ideas Based on Business Impact: Focus on IT's strengths—integration, security, and resource management—to complement business partners' ideation and avoid duplicating their work.
- Promote Employee-Driven Innovation: Actively encourage employees across the organization to experiment with technology and share the most interesting ideas they discover.
- Guide Innovative Ideas from Evaluation to Implementation: Quickly deliver business-tested, IT-approved solutions to the rest of the organization.