What is Corporate Innovation?

December 8, 2021

Corporate innovation is the process of a company experimenting with new practices, technology, strategies, and possibilities to improve the competitiveness of its current business model. At its most basic level, business innovation encourages employees in corporate organizations to think beyond the box. Organizations may establish a specialized innovation team based in satellite offices and work closely with startups to accomplish this.

Companies are constantly developing new products to market or modifications of existing products. A fantastic idea is frequently the catalyst for a company's first success. However, the expansion comes with its own set of difficulties. Large, well-established businesses are especially prone to resisting change and becoming entrenched in their ways. Rather than reinventing the wheel, they prefer to expand on current items. Startups with fresh viewpoints and financial backing are upending entire industries with new technologies — and business models — in today's world.

These realities create the need to stay innovative to survive today’s fast-paced business environment. Here are some steps you should consider for corporations to move up the innovation ladder.

Create an Innovation Lab

One of the most common barriers to corporate innovation is a lack of critical infrastructure to enable new ventures. Even if someone in the sales or marketing department has a compelling idea, it may not fit within the company's current timetables and quarterly goals. Many initiatives shut down before they even get off the ground because there is no specific staff or budget. Corporates need to build innovation teams to raise the company’s intrapreneurship mindset and manage the startup partnership & integration processes. The fundamental goal of an innovation team is to introduce something new to a company—a product, a process, a pivot, and so on. The team gathers and analyses existing products or systems then brainstorms and implements changes using diverse knowledge and skillsets.

Build a Corporate Venture Capital Arm

The main advantage of corporate venture capital over traditional venture capital firms is that CVCs do not just get monetary benefits from their startup investments. They can also use startups’ products to solve the problems and improve the essential processes for themselves or their customers & clients. This is how CVCs create value for startup ecosystems and the corporate world.

Boost Innovation Through Corporate Accelerator

Even if they have extraordinary ideas, many potential entrepreneurs are hesitant to take the plunge. When a company encourages employee innovation, it provides a platform for new businesses to thrive by providing employees with the tools, experience, and industry connections needed to prove a concept. An accelerator program can help a company go beyond its first financing by working as an advisor or co-developer. The external accelerator is a low-risk and potentially high-reward corporate innovation model to implement. At Hackquarters, so far, we have partnered with many leading corporates to bring corporates and startups together to co-create value and overcome the thresholds that the society or business world face. Grants4Apps with Bayer for healthtech startups, VISA Innovation Program for fintech and consumer startups, Sustainable Growth Program with HSBC for sustainability startups, WorkupAgri with Türkiye İş Bank for agriculture startups are a few examples of our approach to corporate innovation. To get deeper insights, you can visit our website.

Run Intrapreneurship Programs to Expand Entrepreneurial Spirit in Your Company

An intrapreneurship program can assist you in identifying exceptional minds and providing them with the resources they require to turn their big ideas into reality. This can be a fantastic approach to gaining a significant competitive advantage while developing new products. It is similar to accelerators in that firms provide a platform and resources for their professionals to work on new ideas. These projects may result in new products for the organization or serve as a launching pad for young entrepreneurs to start their businesses.

Organize Hackathons to Move Up the Innovation Ladder

Sometimes the best form of corporate innovation comes from someone who isn't even associated with the organization. Many businesses organize hackathons to find fresh ideas since outsiders have distinct viewpoints and remain objective. These events are high-intensity R&D sprints that also provide excellent networking opportunities. You can learn more about how we design our Hackathons here.

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