Why is Innovation Important and Why You Need to Make Time to ExperimentInnovation | 0 comments | by Erin Quilliam
Many people are wary of change, and that is why some remain sceptical about innovating. They don’t understand why innovation is important, or simply don’t want to accept the need for change.
However, business innovation and the act of introducing anything new is the only way in which to make progress. If you did not experiment or explore, no fresh ideas will come. Without it, you would have no opportunities to find new and improved methods of working or the technology that could revolutionise your processes. Not to mention in today’s increasingly competitive market, innovation provides a competitive advantage. There are as many reasons why innovation is advantageous as there are reasons that remaining stagnant puts you at a disadvantage.
Innovation is all about implementing new ideas in order to improve work processes, to increase efficiency, reduce running costs, to improve your offering, and increase profitability. We will explain how it does all this below.
Why is Innovation Important for Your Business?
Innovation is important for the survival of your business in an evolving world. Businesses that do not innovate run the risk of:
- Reduced profit margins
- Becoming irrelevant
- Weakened brand
- Decreased morale & loss of staff
- Slow and inflexible work processes
- Losing market share
Business models cannot remain the same indefinitely, or it will eventually cost the business itself. If you think of any long-running company over your lifetime, you would have seen it change over that time. This is necessary for businesses to remain competitive, not least in the modern era.
Thanks to the digital age, we are seeing changes in customer habits and expectations at a rate never seen before. With the availability of technology, there are more ways to connect with and serve customers than there has ever been. There are also more ways to research and access competitors.
In Deloitte’s study of Innovation in Europe, the greatest trigger for innovation was the rise of new technology. The second most important factor was tied between cost efficiency and changing customer expectations. As you can see, the evolving world forces businesses to try and keep up, or face being left behind.
Here are more of the reasons why innovation is important, and why your business must make time to innovate.
Innovation Allows Businesses to Evolve Alongside Customer Expectations
As mentioned previously, customer habits have evolved. The shift in customer habits and expectations is not limited to any specific demographic and is fueled by the widespread availability of new technology. Last year, every age-group and gender spent over 2 hours online per day, and the time spent online has almost certainly risen since then. Not only that, but 1 in 5 people of all ages exclusively use their phone to access the internet and mobiles have been used to access the internet more often than desktops every year since 2016.
Our expectations have been shaped by new technology and the instant-access nature of the internet.
The internet made the world more connected, and information more accessible. Now thanks to the widespread use of smartphones, we expect to be able to access the internet anywhere on these pocket-sized computers. Between the two, people now expect to be able to access your business at any time, in any place.
This has given rise to habits like impatience, where an average user abandons a website if it takes longer than 3 seconds to load.
Additionally, the accessibility of the internet then means finding a competitor is easy too. There are also a plethora of price comparison sites available to make seeing and understanding the choice available far easier. Ultimately, this means that people have more knowledge and agency in the management of their decisions.
Innovation ensures you can implement the latest strategies to ensure you are effectively meeting your customers’ expectations. From the latest marketing tactics to the UX design of your site, these changes will help you to remain relevant. Plus, experimenting with the latest technology ensures that you can both fulfil your customers’ needs, but could, in turn, lead to developments that improve your employees’ experience. For example, improving the capacity for remote working with web or mobile applications.
Without Innovation, You Will Become Irrelevant
This point comes hand-in-hand with the previous one. Keeping up with the times and employing new technology or strategies is vital in remaining relevant in an ever-changing and competitive landscape. By choosing not to make time to innovate or trial new ideas, you will become stagnant. Eventually, your competitors will overtake you and increase their market share, whilst your business becomes increasingly outdated.
Therefore you must not only keep advancing in order to meet customer expectations but choosing not to change will pose a threat to your business.
Experimenting With and Embracing New Technology is Beneficial
Incorporating new technology and strategies will bring many advantages to your business. You could find one of the changes you make radically improves your efficiency, allowing you to allocate valuable extra time where you need it most. The increase in efficiency or the use of technology to replace or automate menial tasks would allow you to relocate staff to other areas of the business.
Alternatively, the addition of a few extra hours a week could grant you the time to experiment further. Allowing you to continue your innovative efforts to further your growth.
As already explained, employing new technology grants you a competitive edge within the crowded marketplace. In a world where most companies are innovating or digitally transforming, simply failing to experiment puts you at a disadvantage by growing increasingly irrelevant to customers, inflexible to change, and unable to compete with the more efficient competitors. When you foster innovation and new ways of thinking, you’ll be able to figure out new methods of conducting business, improved work process, and improving your products and services.
And there are plenty of new things to experiment with. From employing AI and Machine Learning to the Internet of Things and Connected Technology, there is sure to be something out there that could be key in revolutionising your business.
Innovation is Required for Your Business to Grow
Innovation is all about finding ways to work more efficiently and effectively. With this, you can grow your team, your competitive advantage, and your revenue. The combination of all of these benefits creates the perfect catalyst for growth within your company.
Innovation Fosters a Culture of Effective Problem-Solving and Ingenuity
Invaluable skills such as critical thinking and problem-solving are fostered in an innovative environment because it pushes us to think in new ways and develop creative solutions. This develops a culture and people who think differently. They will respond to problems with both analytical thinking and creativity in order to generate new ideas and solutions.
This will not only be applied to the innovation itself. These skills will then be applied to any challenge your business faces. This means your business and the people who make it will become more adaptable, more resourceful, and better prepared for the future and any challenges that will come your way.
Innovation is an Investment in Your Future
The ability to adapt to change, evolve with customers and keep up with the latest technology all contribute to future-proofing your business.
Innovation needs time to incubate, however. You will need to invest time in order to generate ideas.
If your business has been successful, it can be hard to accept a need for change. We always fear the unknown and the risks of investing time and money into a venture without a certain outcome.
Yet even big brands are falling out of favour. It is becoming increasingly clear that a need to become innovative and adaptable is key in enduring success.
Hopefully, you can now appreciate why innovation is important in ensuring your business is adaptable and fit for the future. Meanwhile, the failure to experiment begins to pose a threat to your business over time.
If you are unsure if the IT or technical elements of your business are fit for the future, get in touch today. We are happy to provide a free consultation and help assess what areas of your business could be improved with innovation.digital innovation, digital transformation, innovation, technology