Innovation is often dismissed as a buzzword in business transformation. The reality is it’s a vital differentiator in business success.
There is a remarkable overlap between innovation and value creation in a modern enterprise. Of the top eight global companies by market cap in 2020, seven are technology-driven and highly innovative companies. Only oil giant Saudi Aramco, the largest company by market cap, surmounts that list. Arguably its own dominance will be contingent on innovation in the decades ahead.
Apple, Microsoft, Amazon, Alphabet, Facebook, Tencent, and Alibaba are behemoths of the modern business landscape. Only a jarring last-minute withdrawal from public listing saw innovative Chinese payment company Ant Group not joining this list.
There is clear evidence that innovation breeds value. Boston Consulting Group’s annual analysis of the world’s most innovative companies tallies uncannily to the most valuable digital and technology players. Apple, Alphabet, Amazon, Microsoft, Samsung, Huawei, Alibaba, IBM, Sony, and Facebook make up the top ten spots of most innovative companies.
At Neural Technologies we’ve a long history of driving opportunity through innovation for our customers. Our machine learning (ML) and artificial intelligence (AI) technologies provide easily scaled solutions that enable agile, innovative companies to rapidly increase revenue opportunities while reducing revenue leakage. That ability to adapt quickly is central to innovative companies deriving the greatest possible value from their actions.
Embracing innovation is a mindset
The Merriam Webster dictionary defines innovation as:
- A new idea, method, or device
- The introduction of something new
That definition succinctly incorporates both the value of innovation, and the significant challenges in embedding a true innovation mindset. New ways of working offer the potential to drive remarkable business opportunities, optimizing existing processes while opening up new areas of revenue generation in fresh products and services. Often however the ‘introduction of something new’ faces friction from legacy systems and operators reluctant to change.
If ever you’re in doubt about the value of innovation, you simply need to look at the reality of the world’s most innovative companies. Perhaps the most important thing that innovative companies can teach us is the fundamental ability of innovation to deliver value through the powerful combination of informed insight and fresh ideas.
Neural Technologies is itself an award-winning innovator, winning its third consecutive Outstanding Catalyst Innovation Award at the TM Forum Catalysts Award in 2019. Our experience reveals that innovation isn’t just about delivering theoretical opportunities however, it’s unlocking real value for customers. Our advanced Optimus Platform solutions improved fraud detection time by 12%, and increased collection amounts by 89% at telecoms operator Turkcell. That’s just one example of data-driven innovation driving revenue protection and growth.
Innovation is increasingly digital in our modern world, but it is not inherently so. This is about a willingness to change, to adopt ‘a new idea, method, or device’, and leverage that opportunity to build value. Neural Technologies’ own AI/ML solutions are about capturing the value of data that often already exists, then transforming that data into actionable and timely business insight that combines the power of automation with informed decision making for enterprises.
The innovation imperative
Innovation is likely to be even more crucial in the turbulent post-COVID business landscape. Suppressed trading conditions, reduced workforce capabilities, and volatile market conditions have created remarkable pressures on business revenue opportunities. The aggregate level of corporate debt is now at historically high levels relative to GDP, surpassing the 2008 Financial Crisis, Great Depression, and both world wars.
Boston Consulting Group identifies differentiating characteristics of top innovating companies in The Serial Innovation Imperative. Just 45% of companies both prioritize, and invest in innovation, with innovation leaders 15% more likely to make business model innovation a priority.
There are a number of innovation imperatives identified by analysts. In its innovation research, consultancy firm McKinsey notes a need to Aspire, Choose, Discover, Evolve, Accelerate, Scale, Extend, and Mobilize. Their research reveals that mastering five of these eight imperatives correlates strongly with financial results, delivering a 1.6x amplifier to economic profit, and 2.4x times for those enterprises which master all eight imperatives.
Innovation is about transformative change that unlocks real value. Companies should avoid fixation on innovation for innovation’s sake, and embrace an agile process that genuinely drives value creation opportunities.
The McKinsey study notes “Management teams do far better when they avoid the false comfort of averages, crude benchmarks, or pie-in-the-sky dreams. There is simply no substitute for the hard work of clearly linking innovation portfolios and aspirations, on the one hand, with a clear intent for each initiative and the associated resources required, on the other.” It goes on to note that “you can reduce the odds of placing bad bets through better decision-making processes and closer scrutiny of assumptions.”
That’s how Neural Technologies helps to unlock the value of innovation for our customers. We deliver the power of our own innovative solutions, to transform business insight for enterprises.
Innovation is a process of change, and one which delivers demonstrable value for those organizations that embrace it. Fundamental to that is the question of agile, and informed decision making. With the right tools, empowering you with the right data, the value of innovation opportunity could be remarkable.