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Idea Management | Customers & Community | Engagement & Collaboration

5 Steps to Drive Global Ideation with GenAI

It is well understood that new innovations are made better and more robust through the power of collaboration, diverse perspectives, and expertise. This is why more and more companies are emphasizing inclusive innovation involving multiple stakeholders working toward a common goal and mutual benefit.

However, the broader companies cast their net for ideation, the greater the complexity in fostering meaningful engagement, effectively channeling creativity, and managing the flow of ideas. To mitigate this complexity, the ITONICS Smart Ideation tool harnesses the power of generative AI (GenAI) to streamline the ideation process, empowering companies of any size to activate global communities in innovation.

This blog explores how ITONICS Smart Ideation has the potential to transform innovation by facilitating global ideation. It delves into the ways this tool breaks down traditional barriers to simplify idea submissions, boost participation, and foster more efficient, creative, and inclusive outcomes.

Why global ideation sometimes fails

Boosting engagement in innovation within a dedicated department is hard enough. Inviting participation from a global community of innovators with differing perspectives and capacities can be especially daunting. Get it right, and the benefits are manifold: enhanced creativity, cost and time savings, access to new markets, and greater alignment with customer needs. Meanwhile, poor management of ideation campaigns can lead to wasted resources, dilution of focus, and demotivation among participants.

When global ideation campaigns fail, it is often due to common yet avoidable pitfalls faced throughout the process:

  • Poorly defined ideation campaigns: An unclear or unfocused ideation campaign can lead to confusion about objectives and desired outcomes, resulting in irrelevant or low-quality ideas.
  • Low engagement rates: Insufficient participant motivation or awareness can result in low involvement, limiting the diversity and quantity of ideas generated.
  • Tedious idea submission process: A complex or time-consuming submission process can deter potential contributors, reducing the overall number of ideas collected.
  • Lack of a clear evaluation process: Without standardized criteria or procedures to assess ideas, the evaluation can become subjective, inconsistent, and inefficient.
  • Difficulty managing the flow of ideas: Handling a large volume of ideas, especially ensuring they are evaluated, tracked, and actioned appropriately, can be challenging, leading to potential bottlenecks or overlooked opportunities.

There are also cultural challenges to overcome when ideation is opened to a broader community. Companies must replace mindsets like “not invented here” and imposter syndrome with a culture that values collaboration, openness, and experimentation.

How Smart Ideation drives global ideation

As a part of the ITONICS Innovation Operating System, Smart Ideation helps companies successfully design and launch global ideation campaigns. Infusing machine intelligence into the core of innovation processes like ideation magnifies collective creativity for global teams that want to innovate fast, systematically, and continuously.  

1. Create detailed and targeted campaigns

Clearly defining your ideation campaign is essential in global innovation. With a large number of participants involved, there isn’t the luxury of relying on local branch or department knowledge and nuance, picking up details by the “water cooler.” All information—the goals, scope, guidelines, steps, and timeframes—must be communicated in the campaign from the outset.

This is where Smart Ideation comes in. Harnessing the capabilities of GenAI, Smart Ideation guides campaign managers in swiftly setting up effective global ideation campaigns. The autofill feature uses prompt-based assistance to generate a comprehensive campaign description utilizing best-practice storytelling tactics and tailoring it for the target audience. Campaign managers can also autocreate ideas to initially populate the campaign, serving as an example and inspiration for participants.

Get up and running fast with best-practice campaign templates

The ITONICS Innovation OS also provides best-practice campaign templates to guide the initial setup and ensure everything is captured in one central location. These templates include all the need-to-know information like who are the responsible campaign manager and evaluators, whether it is an always-on or time-bound campaign, the start and end dates, and the workflow through which submitted ideas will flow.

Learn more about ITONICS Campaigns →

2. Streamline the submission process

In our recent webinar on Intelligent Ideation with ITONICS, we asked innovation leaders: What is the main roadblock to ideation in your company? A majority answered: time. Even within large multinational companies, few employees have innovation as part of their core responsibilities. This can make it difficult for those individuals to carve out enough time to shape their input into relevant and impactful ideas—especially when submission processes are high effort and overly arduous.

Smart Ideation simplifies and speeds up the idea submission process, making it easier for everyone to contribute. It guides participants through a series of user-friendly and intuitive steps to shape input into innovation-ready ideas. With GenAI-powered autofill features, detailed idea descriptions, captivating header images, and related tags are all automatically generated to ensure that ideas are properly captured and contextualized with the Innovation OS.

3. Boost participant engagement

Encouraging engagement in a global ideation campaign can be difficult due to organizational silos, asynchronous communication, and differing interests and motivations. Motivation can wane when employees are not made to understand the value of their contributions. Fragmented and opaque idea management systems can also lead to the perception that submitted ideas simply enter a black box with no feedback or tracking of ideas.

Smart Ideation boosts global participation by making the ideation process more transparent, accessible, and fun. Participants gain the confidence to contribute with guided and GenAI-supported idea generation. They can choose from a selection of idea templates that autofill idea descriptions based on a provided title and summary. Various available ideation templates—from creativity methods like SCAMPER to personas like Elon Musk and Barack Obama—make the process more appealing and thought-provoking for participants from different backgrounds.

Take engagement to the next level with gamification

ITONICS offers gamification features to further inspire engagement in global ideation. Participants earn badges for each interaction in the Innovation OS, climbing their organization’s leaderboard for a bit of friendly competition. Managers can reward engagement and also access detailed user activity reports that provide insights to further enhance collaboration.

Learn more about gamification with ITONICS →

4. Efficient idea evaluation and filtering

In global ideation campaigns, efficiently evaluating and filtering a multitude of ideas can pose a big challenge. With a plethora of contributions pouring in from diverse sources, the task of sifting through them to pinpoint the most viable and innovative ideas becomes a key hurdle. This difficulty can lead to potentially groundbreaking ideas being overlooked as teams struggle to manage the sheer volume and variety.

Smart Ideation transforms the idea evaluation process. It automatically assesses each idea against specific, pre-defined criteria. This automation accelerates the filtering and prioritizing process and ensures a comprehensive and fair assessment of all submissions. It enhances the efficiency and effectiveness of the selection process so that every idea, regardless of its origin, is given due consideration, thus elevating the overall quality of ideation outcomes.

5. Effective idea management

Managing a multitude of ideas from various global sources without creating bottlenecks or losing track of valuable contributions requires a meticulous and organized approach. The risk of valuable ideas getting lost in the shuffle is high, and the need for a system that can keep pace with the dynamic nature of a global campaign is critical.

Smart Ideation supports effective idea management with automated tagging. Based on the title and description of each idea, the tool uses GenAI to recommend a list of relevant tags. Attributing tags to ideas allows them to be efficiently categorized and connected to other ideas, projects, and drivers of change with shared tags. This makes it easy to validate ideas, identify synergies, and remove duplication, ultimately increasing the value of your ideas pipeline.

Take engagement to the next level with gamification

ITONICS offers gamification features to further inspire engagement in global ideation. Participants earn badges for each interaction in the Innovation OS, climbing their organization’s leaderboard for a bit of friendly competition. Managers can reward engagement and also access detailed user activity reports that provide insights to further enhance collaboration.

Learn more about gamification with ITONICS →

KPMG’s global co-innovation challenge

Recognizing the immense potential of GenAI throughout not only the ideation process but end-to-end innovation management, KPMG created a Global Generative AI Innovation Challenge. Co-sponsored by ITONICS, this challenge aimed to conceptualize how GenAI can improve the innovation lifecycle.

In addition to this primary objective, KPMG also aimed to open this challenge to thousands of global participants to foster collaboration and knowledge exchange. This required a scalable process and system capable of managing the huge volume of idea submissions expected, ensuring that high-value ideas would be quickly identified and validated. 

This is where KPMG Illuminate, the organization’s innovation operating system, comes in. KPGM Illuminate was introduced in 2022 to enhance co-innovation and drive growth systematically. With KPMG Illuminate, KPMG was able to design, launch, and manage this global innovation challenge quickly and easily. It effectively channeled the collective creativity of KPMG’s diverse network of innovators, facilitating the flow of ideas from submission to implementation.

KPMG's innovation platform powered by ITONICS

In this challenge, GenAI was both the subject of innovation as well as an enabler. KPMG used GenAI to generate the challenge description, provide initial seed ideas, and evaluate submissions alongside the input from its global network. The achievements of this challenge, managed through a centralized innovation operating system, include:

    • Global scalability: The KPMG innovation challenge was extended to more than 10,000 innovators within KPMG’s global community, inviting a greater depth and diversity of ideas.
    • Improved engagement: By clearly communicating what to expect, acknowledging submissions, and announcing winners, KPMG improved engagement and motivation amongst participants.
    • Increased productivity: The ability to launch the challenge and engage the right target audience sped up idea generation, with over 100 ideas submitted in just two days.
    • Leadership commitment: With a transparent and systematic evaluation process in place, decision-makers were quicker and more confident in selecting and investing in ideas.
    • Nurturing relationships: In the true spirit of co-innovation, the challenge has strengthened collaboration and sparked new opportunities within KPMG’s global community.

ITONICS is your partner for global ideation, intelligent foresight, and streamlined portfolio management. Get in touch to learn more about how we’re infusing AI capabilities throughout our end-to-end Innovation OS to help global teams, industry leaders, and world-class companies drive innovation at scale and speed.



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