Innovation Management

Innovation Management is the process of organizing and directing the organization’s human, material and financial resources, in order to increase the creation of new knowledge and ideas to develop new products, processes and services or improve the existing ones, and to transfer that knowledge to every field of activity of the organization.

As a starting point, it is essential to invest time in defining the strategic management model that the organization will follow by designing an innovation process and its management system. Some of the first steps in innovation management are to define the phases and activities to be undertaken and the relations among them, the allocated resources, the objectives, the supporting organizational structure, the action plan and the measurement and evaluation indicators.

Among the most important activities of the innovation management process for an organization, we recommend you “Guía práctica para la gestión de la innovación en 8 pasos” (Practical guide for innovation management in 8 steps), published by the Regional Government of Navarre (Spain) and ANAIN (Innovation and Technology Agency of Navarre), which talks about four groups of aspects to consider:

1. Strategic Dimension

The first step is to implement the organization’s strategic plan: the main process of defining and planning the objectives. It is to set the objectives and the scope of the innovation strategy after self-testing the situation.

2. Developing Ideas Identification

There are a lot of techniques to identify and create new innovation opportunities. Some of the most relevant techniques are the creativity, design and product development techniques based on people’s creative abilities and the detection system of environmental opportunities and threats, arising from technology watch systems, benchmarking and competitive intelligence.

3.Project Development

It is the implementation of innovative initiatives. The management of technological and innovative projects has its own characteristics, mainly produced by the lack of definition of some development aspects and the degree of uncertainty and risk concerning the objectives, results, etc. Therefore, it is very useful in innovation practice to develop systems for planning and controlling the implementation of innovation projects, according to the specific needs of each initiative and giving priority to coordination with other projects of the organization. In addition, a key aspect is to know the funding opportunities offered by the government to promote innovative actions.

4. Exploitation of the results

Innovation is creating competitive advantages that stand out in the market and, through innovation management, a key aspect is to have them as long as possible. In order to do this, there are different protection mechanisms of research results that guarantee you as many benefits as possible, resulting from innovation and business strategy implementation to explore those results and make them profitable.

This innovation management process is based on organization’s adoption of knowledge creation, preservation and management systems: identifying how and when useful knowledge for the business and the existing systems is generated, in order to incorporate it into the organization’s practices.