How to choose an innovation consultancy?
Selecting a business consultancy to get your projects off the ground can be a complex task. But don’t worry, in this post, we will give you valuable tips for you to make the right choice!
With the intensification of the Digital Transformation process in companies, there has never been more innovation talk. No matter if your company is at the forefront of the market, trying to recover from difficult times, or starting to take the first steps to fly higher, innovation consulting is for you!
One of the most common pains is to ensure that the results of successful cases of the consultancy in question will apply to the reality of your company or understanding when is the right time to make this investment.
By this point, you must have been struggling to find a consultancy with experience in the market who understands your segment and knows how to drive innovation with speed and consistent results.
But, in a market where everyone is looking for innovation, how can we be sure that this initiative will generate satisfactory results? Through structured (and flexible!) processes, the answer is to create business solutions with a competitive advantage and the help of specialized professionals.
We recently made a post on why you should invest in an innovation consultancy. Today, we will give you tips on how to choose the right consultancy to help you achieve your goals.
What does an innovation consultancy do?
Innovation consulting is a type of business consulting that focuses on structuring processes and co-creating value solutions to address business challenges.
These processes are generally supported by problem-solving methodologies, process review approaches, and research methods of consumer habits and behaviors, such as Design Thinking and Jobs to be Done.
In these methods, the work consists of promoting a holistic view through exploratory and immersive research to understand the business, relevant variables, and the market contexts in which the company is.
Subsequently, ideas are consolidated to validate hypotheses and start proofs of concept or MVPs. There are several ways to approach innovation in your company, from the outsourcing of multidisciplinary teams, through the insertion of innovation specialists as facilitators to develop training initiatives.
Here at MJV, we work on 4 main innovation fronts, subdivided into a series of other expertise that you can see more in-depth in this article.
Some of them are:
More than implementing successful projects in your organization, it is important that the employees of a company are trained and acculturated to think about innovation from a perspective that allows them to create new solutions. Training services include Workshops and Hackathons.
Process innovation is most likely the most popular type of innovation that exists. With the exponential growth of technology, the need to optimize processes to scale operations has become essential for businesses.
In this logic, we rely on Business Process Management, a robust framework to work the organization’s value chain, including stages of process architecture, mapping, modeling, standardization, transformation, and control. All of this with a focus on continuous improvement, performance monitoring, and savings.
A deck of solutions that includes everything from Strategic Planning, Change Management to Cultural Transformation.
Researches show that experiences are what drive consumer priorities regarding purchase decisions. Thinking digitally, the recent arrival of new businesses brings incredible opportunities. We are talking about creating omni/cross-channel experiences, building user journeys, and designing interfaces.
When to hire an innovation consultancy?
Every manager who once realized the need to intensify efforts in building methods to generate value in his team and/or company has already faced the following question: what is the right time to hire internal help?
As you may know, there is no exact answer. But some questions can help you better understand the inclination of top management to support investments in innovation projects:
- Is the company/sector capable of taking risks to improve processes?
- How comfortable do employees feel to propose solutions different from the usual ones for everyday tasks?
- And for recurring problems? Do they have management support to address these problems in new ways?
- Are there any initiatives to share new process improvement ideas? Is there a specific forum for discussing these ideas?
- What percentage of these ideas have been turned into a practical solution?
- Does the company have (or are there projects for) solutions outside the core business?
If you can make a check or answer positively to most of these questions, know that it is probably time to count on expert help to turn your ideas into solutions!
Some elements such as institutional positioning and the organizational hierarchy can also give important tips concerning the status of innovation in the company and the probability that you will have internal support when hiring a consulting service.
4 steps to choose the right innovation consultancy for your business
- Understand what the different types of innovation are.
Knowing the different types of innovation and their results is essential to understand which kind of approach will best fit the company’s organizational structure – and how this hierarchy will be impacted depending on the choice of each one.
- Check customers and success stories.
Innovative clients or large companies and successful cases with impactful results can give an excellent first impression on the type of challenge that this consultancy is capable of solving.
The consultancy service is strategic and has an intimate relationship with the construction of competitive advantage. Therefore, project data will not always be available to the public.
It is essential to talk with innovation consultants to understand the dynamics of the service better and gauge good results in industries similar to yours.
- Define objectives and understand the execution of the project.
We previously mentioned there are some ways to promote innovation in a company, like workshops and hackathons. But each of them will fit better depending on the company’s maturity in innovation.
Workshops, for example, are events for getting hands-on and gaining experience in the use of design tools that assist in the construction of value solutions for businesses.
Hackathons, on the other hand, are events in which specialists meet to solve particular problems. Do you see the difference between the objectives?
Therefore, it is necessary to define the objectives and requirements to be achieved in implementing an innovation project so that your team can follow the work with the facilitators.
- Attention to culture
If anyone promises a change in your employees’ mindset overnight, or the word “culture” was never mentioned in your conversations, cross that option off your list.
An innovation consultancy can offer immediate results in innovation projects and even scale quickly as new teams change the way they work to build differentiated solutions.
However, these long-term effects can only be measured as the culture of innovation is consolidated in your company.
It turns out that building a sustainable innovation process – one in which your employees will take care of innovation from end to end – will take some time (depending on the company’s rigidity)—transformations like this demand a change in habits, consistency, and confidence in the chosen method.
Accelerate your goals with expert help
Choosing an innovation consultancy can seem like a complex challenge (and it is!). But, by understanding the level of innovation maturity of your company and the structural barriers to be overcome when making this investment, it is possible to implement a sustainable and efficient innovation process.
However, it is necessary to define the type of result expected from this investment and ensure the alignment between the company’s stakeholders on the objectives of the process. Remember: innovating needs to be a certainty.
Do you want to implement a culture of innovation capable of changing the frequency and speed with which new solutions appear in your team for the better? MJV can help you! Talk to a consultant and get all your questions answered.