• Micha Veen

Can we, in today's world, only appreciate technology innovation?


When you speak to employees in how to resolve their challenges, most immediately think of the latest technology or mobile solution to resolve their challenge, instead of addressing a process, behaviour or operational challenge. With the rise of mobility-anywhere and IoT in the consumer environment, we expect that any business challenge can also be resolved through these technology advances. Our first reaction is to resolve our issues through the use of the latest and greatest technology.

This mindset is not strange, as our private lives we can resolve most challenges through a new app. You can say that there is an app for almost everything, and if there is no mobile app, then there is another technology that is able to cater for the requirement. But is this haphazard focus on technology-driven resolution the right approach for more complex operational issues? And more important, if technology is able to resolve many of our consumer requirements at home, is it strange that we have started to create similar expectations in the workplace? Or are we just getting lazy?

Due to the exponential increase, ease-of-use and adoption of new technologies in our day-to-day lives, most employees have started to have this same expectation in the workplace. Many technologies are trying to show how consumer-type technologies can be extended in your organisation, but is this really realistic?

On our insights page, we are including many external "research papers" that show how technology organisations are looking to introduce fit-for-purpose solutions into organisations. However, due to this consumer to organisation transition, a large percentage of the workforce don't see the need to initiate non-technology innovative solutions. This continuous demand by the consumer-workforce starts to impact the CIO-office in the last few years. Many employees don't appreciate that with these leading-edge technology innovations, business complexity increases as well. 10 years ago, technology solutions and the CIO-office was focused on introducing large, connected ERP solutions to deliver end-to-end operational effectiveness, visibility and cost efficiency. But in today's business landscape the focus is shifting from these manual, high-maintenance ERP-type solutions to intuitive, easy-to-use, fit-for-purpose business and technology solutions.

So what's next to deliver Operational Innovative solutions?

  • It's crucial to deliver innovative solution design through close collaboration, potential use of Robotics and focus on end-to-end solution integration (see A refreshing innovative approach to Supply Chain Excellence)

  • To be successful in delivering Operational Innovative solutions, e.g. supply chain innovation, finance innovation, etc. ensure that your organisation is creating customer-centric innovative solutions (see Customer-centric Supply Chain Solutions)

  • Focus on results! If your operational innovative solution doesn't deliver results, than there is little point of doing innovation. By clearly defining and agreeing what results are expected, you're able to deliver the right Operational Innovative Solution (see What innovative solution approach provides results?)

This shows that Innovative solution design in the supply chain, operations, finance & accounting and other back-office functions, don't need technology to deliver real results. It's therefore important to show your workforce to introduce non-technology innovations before embarking on Technology Innovations...

If you're interested in how to adopt Operational Innovative Solutions without a single focus on Technology Innovation, don't hesitate to contact Unique Excellence!

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