1. Are you looking for solutions to the right problems?
There are lots of problems that technology can solve. Addressing the issues that are the biggest pain points or desires of your customers will yield the best results. An innovation initiative that clearly defines the problem or specific capability that their customer desires will yield better results. Start the process with clearly defined use cases.
2. What’s out there?
With things changing so rapidly there is undoubtedly many new technologies that you aren’t aware of. Be vigilant about getting exposed to new trends and technologies. There is a lot that can be discovered by reading tech news and attending meetups and conferences. However, there are numerous technologies that are not on the radar yet, because a company may be in stealth mode, coming out of research labs, or hasn’t received much publicity. This is where working with someone with connections in the venture capital, university, and startup communities’ helps give you earlier access to high quality technologies. Give yourself the best chance of succeeding by getting exposure to high quality technologies.
3. Do you have the best technology available?
Everyone has heard the term garbage in garbage out. Being able to select the best technology solution for your organization is critical. For a given problem, like social media publishing, monitoring, and analytics for example, there are numbers of solutions that provide these capabilities. How would you choose? Is price your biggest determinant? Is analytics across a variety of social media platforms your key determinant? Is your user going to be highly trained or anyone in the organization? Understanding your criteria for selection and the technical differences between each offering is critical. Working with someone that can speak with the technical teams and know the questions to ask can save a lot of time moving forward with the wrong solution. Having people that are subject matter experts and can see the nuances between the technologies is key to not getting the most hyped technology/company but the solution that will improve your customers experience. From the whole universe of technical solutions, be sure to move forward with the best options for your needs.
4. Have you tried it?
There is nothing like trying out a technology to see what it actually does. Does it perform as advertised? What is the user experience like? Does it integrate with other backend systems that are currently being used? Something tangible to test and try is also key to help socialize the technology with decision makers. Prototypes can be shared with customers to validate that the solution actually solves their pain point. The value of being able to quickly develop and prototype cannot be understated in the innovation process.
Members of DAF Technologies regularly partner with organizations to accelerate their innovation initiatives. We identify opportunities for innovation, research and identify recommended emerging technologies, and pilot and integrate new technologies into business processes. Let us help you leverage emerging technologies to innovate and endure. If you have questions, please contact Director, Innovation & Technology Faith Davis at 301.541.8569 or firstname.lastname@example.org