“It’s possible for any company—of any size, in any category—to launch successful new products.” These, the words best summing up Nielsen’s Breakthrough Innovations report, highlight that the best innovations can come from surprising sources.
While the evaluation of more than 20,000 new products to find out which ones can be labelled “breakthroughs” is a great read, the corresponding blog post and study, Why Collaboration Leads to Higher-Impact Innovations, highlights the need to simplify communication and facilitate collaboration.
Among the top findings:
- Larger Teams Generate Better Concepts: Teams of 6+ generated concepts that performed 58% better with consumers.
- Diversifying Your Teams Results in Better Consumer Preference: By bringing in four or more business functions into the product development stage, companies recognize an 18% relative improvement in consumer preference.
- Collaboration is Challenging: Nearly 70% of products are developed by teams of two or three, with 54% developed by teams of two.
The study goes on to highlight barriers to communication: Time to receive feedback, amount of ideas generated, increased risk of conflict, and fear of losing control.
“Collaboration certainly isn’t easy, but data suggests that it can have a tangible impact on innovation outcomes. With the right tools and support, companies can begin taking steps to improve their current processes.”
Takeaways for All Industries and Business Functions
While the study highlighted great points on the importance of collaboration in product development, facilitating communication between different business functions should be at the heart of every organization—product or service, consumer or business focused, team of 10 or company of 10,000.
Bringing collaboration to your organization not only will allow your organization the opportunity to provide industry-changing innovations, but also enable sales performance, clarify policy, save time, and improve customer satisfaction.
With the technologies available to businesses today, companies who implement an entire social layer across departments will be able to make decisions faster, cut reliance on email, and gain a competitive advantage in the marketplace. Consider some of the additional benefits:
- Billing issues could be streamlined if receivables and sales or payables and purchasing were connected to the appropriate collaborative network in the context of executing business processes.
- End-of-period reconciliations could proceed faster if communications among the right people in the departments involved less effort.
- Shorten the financial close process by bringing departments together to save time and clear up confusion.
- Add perspective during planning and review periods to help everyone understand cause and effect, each manager providing his or her own insight.
Intacct, the cloud accounting and finance platform chosen by over 10,000 businesses to simplify financial management, introduced its own social layer (Intacct Collaborate) in 2013, and has continued to improve not only the accounting function, but the collaboration function for organizations.
With 2016 on the horizon, resolve to get connected. Contact Brittenford today to learn how your organization can tear down communication barriers, save time, and maybe even provide your own industry-shaping innovation.