Why businesses are turning to crowdsourcing in their search for technology ideas?

In today’s fast paced business world, innovation and technology solutions are being sort by almost all companies. The big challenge companies face is finding the right solutions.

Representation of technology and the benefits to business

One of the latest companies turning to crowdsouring for technology solutions ideas is United Utilities. It recently launched its Innovation Lab in August looking for fresh thinking.
www.unitedutilities.com/corporate/about-us/innovation-lab

According to Forbes, 85% of global brands have crowdsourced in the last 10 years!

There are tons of benefits from crowdscourcing with few negatives.

Whilst large business benefit from their brand and scale in crowdsourcing initiatives, there are ways for all businesses, small or large to benefit from it. If you are wondering HOW can I use crowdsourcing for my company, this article will help.

Global brands and innovation searches

There are a number of examples of global brands harnessing crowdsourcing to find innovation and technology for their businesses.

Lego is one of the best success examples of a company who embraced crowdsourcing to help generate new products. The company allows people to submit designs for new Lego products which others can vote for. The ideas with the most number of votes gets moved to production and the creator receives a 1% royalty on the net revenue. This crowdsourcing both generates new ideas and tests the market.

Unilever has established the Unilever Foundry https://foundry.unilever.com which enables startups and innovators to collaborate with Unilever. Examples of successful projects include beacon technology in ice cream cabinets through to customers personalising their own marmite jars.

BT recently launched its latest innovation competition around the internet of things to hardness ideas from startups and sme’s.
http://www.btplc.com/Innovation/Innovationnews/internetofthingscomp/index.html

These are numerous examples which would be quoted. Perhaps the best-known example is Airbnb where the whole business model is based on crowdsourcing.

Finding Technology if you aren’t a global brand

You don’t need the scale or brand of the likes of Coca Cola and Lego to benefit from crowdsourcing. Some well know UK companies have established incubators to provide innovation ideas such as John Lewis with its Jlad initiative https://jlab.co.uk/#innovation. Incubators are gaining in popularity but there are costs associated with running them.

There are a number of platforms that help companies utilise crowdsourcing. One example is qmarkets which can assist companies engage with its employees and stakeholders for innovation ideas.

If a company is looking to understand how existing technology can help their business, www.introstream.com is a simple to use platform focused on this area.

The platform is an index of B2B technology solution providers which is free to search. If a company is unsure of what technology solutions could help their business, the IntroStream Challenge provides a solution to this problem.

A Company creates a challenge which is posted to the platforms Members who are all B2B technology solution companies. These Members respond to the challenge with short tailored ideas setting out how their technology could help the business. The service is free to use and helps businesses understand what solutions are available to help their business.

Final word

Technical innovation over the past few decades has been staggering. To remain competitive is today’s changing business landscape, companies need to identify innovation and new technologies. Crowdsourcing is one tool increasing in popularity to help companies achieve this as there can be huge benefits with low risk.

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