Innovation Design and Planning
Design and Planning Innovation is the process of using ideas within a company to create new products, services, technology, or processes. Myths used to acknowledge that innovation was the idea of one individual with no support from others. In reality, innovative ideas that become new products and services require the support and knowledge of a significant amount of individuals. The individuals involved in the innovation process become involved in an array of business functions ranging from manufacturing, marketing, sales, and distribution.
Companies will need employees with a diverse set of skills to develop, test, and commercialize the new products and services. Therefore, companies rely on “strong consistent processes and frameworks in order to manage, develop, and test ideas” (Phillips, 2011, p. 5). Before the innovation planning process can begin, management must provide a clear definition of the work to be completed, the individuals responsible for working within the different steps, and provide the defined workflow necessary for the teams to achieve and accomplish the tasks needed for the innovation to properly work.
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In the following report, the innovation planning and design process will be addressed. Further discussion will include an analysis of the internal and external factors influence on the innovation design process. Furthermore, a description of the steps needed for the innovation planning process will be addressed. A company’s strategies need constant adjustments to keep up with the changes in the economy. The management must consider the internal and external factors that affect the decision for best strategy.
The following are internal factors and external factors that will “affect the choice of the innovation strategy and the shape of the portfolio- play-to-win or play-not-to-lose” (Davila, Epstein, & Shelton, 2006, p. 75). The internal factors include: * Technical capabilities: The current capabilities of the company will determine the amount of technology innovation the company is currently able to handle. * Organizational capabilities: This determines if the company is open to the process of using innovation. Innovation cannot be present if the organization and management do not have the necessary capabilities.
Success of the current business model: The planning and design process can only be successful if the company could achieve success in the current business strategies. If failure is present, it becomes evident that future changes will also fail. * Funding: Adequate funding is necessary to support the change but too much funding can become a waste of resources. If there is not enough resource the innovation process cannot be completed. * Top management vision: The management will inadvertently determine the direction the company will go.
It will become a deciding factor of which innovation strategy will best help the company to reach the goals and meet the requirements for the mission and company principles. The External factors include: * Capabilities in the external network: It is important that a company creates sustainable alliances inside and outside the organization. The partnerships are an important asset to the possibility of the innovation moving forward. * Industry structure: Understanding the barriers and obstacles within the industry will provide important inputs relative to the innovation strategy design.
Analysis can indicate areas that may hold back the opportunities for the company to design new strategies based on innovative ideas. * Competition: The competition and the organization determine the shape innovation will have on the market. An organization must have the innovative abilities necessary to compete with current and new competitors entering the market. * Rate of technological change: It is important for a company to identify the effects of change on the company’s current products and services. It is vital for the company to change the technology used to keep up or stay ahead of the pack on a continual bases.
According to Davila, Epstein, and Shelton (2006), “Internal factors are not the only formative forces; external forces can also shape the innovation strategy” (p. 77). Making aware of the internal and external factors can help to update and improve the innovation strategies the company uses. If the factors are made aware and followed, the factors will work hand-in-hand to support the company through the design and planning process of the innovation strategies. Equally important to the innovation process are the factors related to the innovation systems design.
Factors that are analyzed include the creative phase, execution phase, and creation stage. In the creative stage, ideas come together for everyone to discuss. Next the innovation systems design will lead to the execution stage. During this stage, management will discuss and decide which idea will be the best to benefit and support the mission and principles of the company. Once a decision has been accomplished, the company moves to the creation stage. At this point, every detail will become compiled into the functions of daily business. Innovation systems are important for the sake of a company’s growth and success.
Innovation processes will only become successful if everyone involved works and communicates the processes necessary to reach the determined goals and objectives. Innovation planning involves activities that are done to identify business mission, long-term objectives, opportunities and threats of the organization, determining alternative strategies and finally choosing the strategies that have to be adopted in order to achieve the company’s objectives (David, 1999). Before a company can begin the innovation planning process, common aspects of the process needs to be acknowledged.
The company needs to recognize a few fundamentals that coincide with the planning of internal innovation: 1. The company must acknowledge the goals are for the purpose of leading and outperforming the market competition. Innovation is used to support and accompany the company’s overall strategic plans. 2. The internal innovation process must include many individuals who possess different capabilities. 3. Resources provide the means necessary for the innovation process to take place. It is important for a company to manage the resources in order for the company to acknowledge the capacity of innovation that can be handled.
Once the dimensions have been recognized by management, a few steps will need to be followed in the planning process. Five specific activities are part of the innovation planning: setting vision, mission, goals and objectives, strategies, and tactics (White & Bruton, 2007, p. 102). Setting the vision is the initial step to the innovation process. A vision is a set direction in which management has decided to drive the company toward. Vision provides a clear focus on what he innovation plan will accomplish in the strategy of the company. Once the management has reached a clear vision, the company will begin developing the mission.
The purpose of a mission statement is to describe what the vision does and how. The mission takes greater involvement to develop. The goal is to understand the meaning and to fulfill the mission statement. The mission statement helps to keep a focus as the planning and implementation process begins. The next stage in the process is to establish the objectives and goals of the company. The goals and objectives specify what innovations, among other things, the firm wishes to accomplish over the short and long-term (White &Bruton, 2007, p. 103).
When the goals and objectives have been set, a strategy must be set to achieve the goals and objectives previously established. The strategy will determine the direction the company wishes to compete in. The final step to the innovation planning process is specifying the tactics and actions that will be necessary to achieve the goals and objectives of the company. In this step, management will determine the activities that will be conducted by individuals involved with the process. Each activity must help the company reach the goals; the goals succeed the mission, and the mission statement supports the company’s vision.
It is vital that companies follow the necessary steps in an innovation planning process. To stay competitive and above other companies, innovation is necessary to the strategies a company will use. Understanding the internal and external factors will help in the designing of the innovative plans. The internal and external factors, if understood and followed, the strategy that will be set in motion will become supported. The use of a planning process is to help outline the vision, mission, goal and objectives, strategies, and tactics to achieve implementation of innovative products and services.