Originally posted at http://www.howtomeasureanything.com, on Thursday, March 05, 2009 7:30:54 PM, by JBehling.
“I am Six Sigma Black Belt for an IS Organization and my team has been struggling to measure the impact of “Innovation” in our company. We bring new and innovative systems to our business partners to help them streamline their practices and processes.
Any thoughts on how to develop a measurement system for innovation? Are there any standard practices for measuring IS Innovation? HELP!”
I have little experience in this topic, but what do you think about this?
First…define “innovation” as it pertains to your organization. For example, does your organization look at “innovation” the same as others view “breakthrough”? A “breakthrough” could be something like a sudden advance in knowledge or technology resulting from research, new application of something already known, etc. Once defined, a process can be established to measure innovation. One way to do this is to establish business rules around the definition and measure results against those rules. Another way is to establish a forum or appoint a single expert to act as a validator. Advances that are candidates for innovation could be presented to the validator (or a committee) with justification. The expert validator or committee would then rule as to whether the item really is an innovation. All proceedings must be documented to justify the findings. To summarize..this process would consist of — definitions (that are acceptable to the community of experts), business rules for declaring an innovation, and judgment by experts. Those are my thoughts…I am sure there are other ways, and I would be interested in hearing them.
It sounds like you are proposing a solution to a challenge not offering a challenge. And your solution is about defining some process but not really about measuring it.
Having said that, a lot of people try to measure innovation. Some approaches to measuring innovation seem to count nearly everything under the sun as innovation. So you are correct that the first step is to define it. I just didn’t see how you were actually defining it.
Also – to repeat the questions I asked in another challenge – why do you care? Are you selecting ideas based on their level of innnovation? Why? Do you really care ultimately about potential business success? If so, aren’t you really measuring that? If not, then what is the purpose of the measurement?
I’ll await your replies.