Exago’s client Chilectra in ‘top 3’ for innovation

For the second year in a row, Chilectra, from the Endesa group, has been recognised for its innovative culture in the ‘Ranking of Creative Corporate Cultures’ put out by the University for Development and MMC Consultants in Chile. This power company has been using Exago´s idea management software since 2012, in line with its counterparts in Brazil, Peru, Argentina and Colombia.

Chilectra has guaranteed its presence in the country’s ‘top 3’ by:

  • ‘Understanding innovation as value creation that transforms high potential ideas in processes, technologies and new business lines improvements’
  • ‘[Maintaining] a longstanding innovation programme and a strategy based on the use of elements that gather the company’s energy through people’s collective intelligence: its own employees highlight how the company has the most developed system of resources and incentives for innovation among the organisations assessed this year’
  • ‘[Encouraging] a high level of commitment, challenging work and leadership: all these components allow Chilectra to establish itself as a leader in innovation nationwide’

Now in its second edition, the ‘Ranking of Creative Corporate Cultures’ provides a comprehensive and rigorous assessment of the culture for creativity and innovation in companies in Chile. Despite coming from very different industries, the selected companies share a common trait: ‘They have put people at the centre of their innovation strategy, recognising that each worker has the ability to improve and create value.’

Chile has become a case study in growing innovation, with its own ‘Chilecon Valley’. In late 2013, the capital of Santiago was named one of the world’s top five innovation hubs.

Webinar: How to effectively run innovation initiatives in multinationals

Building a unique corporate and innovation culture is not easy to achieve, especially in a multi-cultural, multi-business and multi-language environment. The obstacles are many, from geography to cultural, business and technical idiosyncrasies. Join Exago and Innovation Management.se (IM) on October 22 to learn from the Enel case study and identify the key success factors to efficiently run an idea management programme across borders.

The session takes place at 5:00 PM Central European Time / 8:00 AM US Pacific Time / 11:00 AM US Eastern Time. Pedro do Carmo Costa, Exago’s director and co-founder, hosts the webinar, with Carlo Napoli’s special participation. Carlo Napoli is the head of Innovation Knowledge and Community at Enel SpA.

In this live IM Channel One Roundtable Discussion, you get the opportunity to learn from a real case study from Enel, Italy’s largest power company and Europe’s second listed utility by installed capacity. The multinational operates in 34 countries across 4 continents, serving 61 million customers.

Enel’s fresh experience in implementing a global initiative gives a useful blueprint, if you want to run a cross borders idea management programme, so as to achieve corporate alignment, employee’s engagement and seed a culture of innovation.

What main challenges will be addressed?
The ultimate task for multinationals today is to efficiently harness their greatest asset: the knowledge and expertise of its people, spread across the organisation and the globe.

One of the main challenges for companies is to learn how to manage transnational innovation initiatives; to collect everyone’s ideas and insights, regardless of individuals’ geographical dispersion; create a collaborative environment where ideas are discussed and enriched; and evaluate proposals, in an unbiased way, to find the best answers.

The Enel case study
Following a pioneering experience started in one of its subsidiaries in Latin America in 2011, Enel launched in February 2014 a global innovation crowdsourcing initiative.

This initiative involves about 60.000 employees, in 34 countries – an example of how to effectively design and run a global innovation programme, engaging people who speak different languages, live in different countries and work in different businesses.

Interested in registering? Sign up here.

Exago and Enconcreto hold ‘Innovation Lab Bogota’ for top executives

Executives from top companies have gathered in Bogota, Colombia, 17 and 18 September, to get to know and better understand the latest tools available to make innovation tangible. This Innovation Lab, ‘From ideas into results: Building an innovative engine in your organisation through new digital processes and tools’, is offered by Enconcreto, one of Exago’s partners in South America.

Pedro do Carmo Costa, Exago’s director and co-founder, is addressing central topics of both disruptive and incremental innovation – including ‘Tendencies and disruptions’, ‘Insights from the consumer’, ‘Orthodoxies and breaking the rules’ and ‘From ideas into business propositions’. Pedro is also conducting the workshop ‘Involve and engage your organisation through digital platforms’, on how digital media are evolving as key tools to support innovation and business itself.

Putting innovation to work
Applying the concepts, methods and tools presented, participants are addressing a challenge: build ideas for Juan Valdez Café, a multinational coffeehouse chain based in Colombia, specialising in coffee retail. Step by step, they have to understand the chain’s specific goals and business concepts and look for new insights and perspectives – to create new ideas and possibilities.

‘Our main goal is that participants feel confident enough to embrace their own challenges, translating innovation efforts into measurable results and improved indicators for their organisations’, says Isabel Espinosa of Enconcreto.

Enconcreto is a Colombia-based innovation consulting firm helping large organisations structure their innovation initiatives. Enconcreto focuses its attention on the backend of the innovation process, namely prototyping, experimenting, launching businesses and accelerating opportunities.

Innovation is execution: going beyond ideas

One of the most important facts about innovation is that it reduces risk. This is contrary to what is commonly believed but since markets are in constant flux the implementation of innovative ideas is a definite way to reduce risks from competitors and market changes.

Since the late 90s innovation has become a trendy concept but still a very theoretical one. It is not always evident how to materialize new projects because in order to achieve this, organizations must provide resources, time, people, commitment, an innovative culture, strategy, and structure. It’s a highly complex field of management.

Companies can’t necessarily use a traditional implementation methodology or model for innovation. As such, it is imperative to design and implement an Innovative Project Management model (IPM) tailored to each company and industry in order to help achieve an innovative culture and generate tangible results.

The IPM model guarantees a successful implementation of innovation projects. The stages of this process are as follows:

  • Sensitization and ideation.
  • Filtering and the selection of ideas.
  • Structuring winning ideas based on alignment to company strategy, which includes the definition of objectives (general and specific), project stages, and a timeline.
  • Implementation:
    // Structuring work teams based on an analysis of the skills required and defining an organizational chart with roles and responsibilities;
    // Definition of strategic partners, operators and suppliers;
    // Definition of work methodology, meeting frequency planning, communication media, etc. (work rules);
    // Definition of KPIs;
    // Financial modeling;
    // Follow-up meetings and “Unlock” sessions to make adjustments and overcome barriers;
    // Prototyping or pilot design plans (as applicable);
    // Definition of deployment and communication plans (definition of go-to-market strategy if it is a product or service, for example);
  • Project launch.

Organizations that implement innovative projects create tangible value and reinforce their competitive positioning in the market. Exago’s and Enconcreto’s models are highly complementary and have already been combined so that companies get the most from their people and create a culture of innovation that delivers value and establishes differentiation.

Being able to transform ideas into value is – more than ever – the best definition of innovation where engagement and execution are the abilities that separate those who talk from those who deliver.

Article written by Enconcreto, a Value Added Reseller of Exago for the Colombian Market

Enel’s employees present 1,300 ideas in Eidos Market’s first global edition

In a little over a month, Enel’s employees in different countries have presented 1,300 ideas to address the challenges the company launched in the Eidos Market platform. Using Exago’s idea market solution, this platform allows any participant to submit, discuss and evaluate ideas – thus engaging all staff in Enel’s shared innovation efforts.

Around 3,300 employees have already contributed to the challenges, making 2,300 comments and 6,000 evaluations. The platform works like a stock market, where anyone can invest in the ideas they believe to be more valuable, using the credits they earn for their overall participation.

In this first edition, Enel selected four main challenges: customer contact, the environment, individual roles in health and safety and the improvement of professional performance.

An active role in innovation
José Arrojo de Lamo, Enel’s head of innovation, says, ‘The secret of Eidos is not only to suggest ideas but also to develop and implement them to make sure their value reaches our business.’

Endesa, a subsidiary of the Enel group, has been using Exago’s bottom-up innovation tool since 2012, in Spain, Portugal, and Latin America. Building on this experience, the project has grown until, now, Eidos Market is open to all employees in the 40 countries where Enel operates.

The platform uses a predictive market algorithm developed by Exago to select top ideas efficiently. The ideas that get more support in the idea market – through the investments they attract – are then assessed by a team who decide which to implement. This model allows each employee to take an active role in the company’s future, allowing Enel to activate and harness its staff’s collective intelligence to reach common goals.

You can read more about the Eidos Market’s first edition results here (in Spanish).