Findings show key inhibitors as lack of process, investment, and metrics; not culture or COVID
April 13, 2022, RALEIGH N.C. and AUSTIN TX, InnovationForce, the company developing the world’s first purpose-built SaaS-based platform to automate and democratize the innovation process today released the results of its 2022 Innovation Trends Report Card. While 77% of the respondents said they have an environment where it is safe to fail in the name of innovation, 38% said their companies are not investing enough in innovation, 35% cited the lack of clear ownership, and 33% said the absence of a clear process were barriers. Respondents said the COVID-19 pandemic did not impact their company’s ability to innovate.
“According to UNESCO, 2021 was a record-breaking year for the amount the world spent on R&D and innovation, for the first time reaching $1.7 trillion,” said Kim Getgen, InnovationForce founder and CEO. “Yet 53% of our respondents said they did not have metrics to measure their innovation efforts. Only 23% said their organization had resources dedicated to innovation. This study highlights the gap technology can fill by automating, scaling, and accelerating innovation with a proven process, workflows, and dashboarding reporting.”
The 2022 Innovation Trends Report Card represents the views of a global community of innovators with workers on the frontlines of various company sizes and types. Over a year in the making, the study included a global survey and one-on-one interviews. The report card indicates the key barriers to innovation are too little investment, lack of ownership, and lack of process. Most of the 113 respondents work at privately held corporations in North America with 1,000 employees or more. Respondents’ roles were predominantly senior management, R&D, sales, marketing, engineering, and project management.
Below are highlights from the “2022 Innovation Trends Report Card” study:
The survey revealed that most companies (83%) launch up to 10 products a year without a formalized product development process (62%).
Innovation is moving toward inclusive, “all-in” cultures where there was overwhelming agreement that innovation belonged to everyone (33%). While most organizations want diversity and inclusion, without a clear “owner,” the innovation process cannot be efficiently managed and driven to completion.
Culture was not identified as a key barrier. An overwhelming 78% said they worked in an environment where it was “safe to fail in the name of innovation,” and 51% said their organization valued experimentation. At the same time, half of the respondents agreed with the statement that their company had a lot of great ideas but could not execute them, indicating that execution, rather than culture, is the primary barrier to innovation.
A key finding in the survey was that an overwhelming majority (53%) were unaware of any metrics their corporations used to measure innovation. The most common metric used was the percentage of revenue generated by the innovation (35%).
69% said COVID did not have an impact or saw no change in their companies’ ability to innovate during the global pandemic in 2021.
Spotlight on the Energy Industry
Twenty percent (20%) of the respondents were from energy, representing the largest industry segment. It is estimated utilities in the U.S. alone will spend $1 trillion by 2030 to modernize the grid to meet decarbonization mandates.
“When innovating, it is important to tap into the creativity of an organization,” said Larry Bekkedahl, senior vice president for advanced energy delivery with PGE. “Employees are focused on achieving the strategic direction and purpose of the company. The challenge is to connect innovation to the work employees are doing daily. I believe that by tapping into what motivates people, they can feel a sense of ownership in innovation. The key step is developing a process that executes on the promise of innovation. With help from InnovationForce, we’ve simplified and accelerated our innovation process into use cases that run in 90-day sprints. It is a repeatable process that delivers quick wins. By reducing complexity and showing employees and external industry partners how they can participate in our innovation process, we deliver more transformational business outcomes.”
InnovationForce was launched within the energy industry, working with utilities that have the most urgent need to innovate faster now. Working together, InnovationForce and its customers and partners have established an impressive use case library to help utilities accelerate the adoption of decarbonization technologies, enable transportation electrification, improve grid resiliency, and prevent wildfires.
Get the full report, “2022 Innovation Trends Report Card: The Execution Dilemma.”
InnovationForce is launching the “2022 Innovation Trends Report Card” at the ETS22 conference, where it is a finalist in the START@ETS competition. It presents during the keynote pitches on Wednesday, April 13, at 8:30 a.m. CST.
You can download the complete report card HERE.