Other Awards…


Other Awards

One of the great things about our conference is the chance to recognise organisations for the good work they do in relation to Suggestion Schemes and Benchmarking. Alongside our Idea of the Year award, we present Accreditation Awards and new for 2012 Benchmarking Awards. Continue reading

Idea of the Year Results…


Well the beginning of November was our annual Idea of the Year competition, once again this year, the final was held in conjunction with our annual conference.

There were over 100 ideas submitted from all sectors of our membership and indeed from all over the world. Once a shortlist was decided on, we invited the finalists to our conference to carry out a brief interview with the judges to explain the idea and the benefits it has brought to the organisation. Continue reading

Key Drivers of Successful Implementation of an Employee Suggestion-Driven Improvement Program


I was sent a link to a great peace of work by Harvard University by a friend of ideasUK, Paul Sloane (Destination Innovation) and thought I would share, it is a very interesting piece of work that would be a great starting point to anyone setting up an ideas programme.

Here is an abstract from the paper:

Service organizations frequently implement improvement programs to increase quality. These programs often rely on employees’ suggestions about improvement opportunities. Organizations face a trade-off with such suggestion-driven improvement programs. On one hand, the improvement literature recommends that managers focus organizational resources on surfacing a large number of problems, prioritizing these, and selecting a small set of high priority ones for solution efforts.

The theory is that soliciting a large number of ideas from employees will surface a set of higher priority problems than would have been identified with a less extensive search. Scarce organizational resources can be allocated to resolving the set of problems that provide the greatest improvement in performance. We call this an “analysis-oriented” approach. On the other hand, managers can allocate improvement resources to addressing problems raised by frontline staff, regardless of priority ranking. This “action-oriented” approach enables more resources to be spent on resolving problems because prioritization receives less attention. To our knowledge, this tradeoff between analysis and action in process improvement programs has not been empirically examined.

To fill this gap, we randomly selected 20 hospitals to implement an 18-month long employee suggestion-driven improvement program-58 work areas participated. Our study finds that an action-oriented approach was associated with higher perceived improvement in performance, while an analysis-oriented approach was not.

Our study suggests that the analysis-oriented approach negatively impacted employees’ perceptions of improvement because it solicited, but did not act on, employees’ ideas. We discuss the conditions under which this might be the case.

To download the full paper, follow this link

Full credit for this research goes to Anita L. Tucker and Sara J. Singer and taken from HBS Working Knowledge website.

Of course, ideasUK can help in your quest in launching the ideal engagement programme for your organisation. Contact us today for more information.

Free Engagement Event…..


Thursday 5th July, Cardiff.

Just a reminder about our next FREE event in Cardiff on the 5th July.

Two half day sessions 9.30 – 12.30 and 1.30 – 4.30

Session format:

• Introduction and objectives of the session
• Overview of employee engagement, staff involvement and suggestion schemes

1 hour workshop:

• Overview of employee engagement, staff involvement and suggestion schemes from internationally successful organisations – HSBC • RICOH • MoD (GEMs Scheme) and  Improlity software.

The workshops will be covering specific topics:

• The role of leaders in supporting engagement
• Practical Engagement tools / approaches
• Better productivity and performance through engagement
• How to engage staff through electronic media

Networking Break

1 hour workshop:

• Repeat of the workshops run earlier so that delegates are able to gain experiences
from a number of different sectors.

Call to action:

• What can you take away and use from today?
• A key feature of the event will be to take away practical actions which can be implemented and to generate information that can be shared with others.

Close of session

The session will be repeated in the afternoon. There are a limited number of full day places available for delegates travelling significant distances, or those wishing to gain experiences from all of the organisations participating.

The event is being hosted by the Wales Audit Office at 24 Cathedral Road, Cardiff.

For further information and booking please check:

The IdeasUK website & blog – www.blog.ideasuk.com

Email Anthony Denatale at – anthony@ideasuk.com

Twitter – follow ideasUK @ideasworldwide

THIS EVENT IS TOO GOOD TO MISS – SO BOOK YOUR PLACE TODAY, SPACES ARE LIMITED AND WE  HAVE OVER 3O DELEGATES BOOKED ALREADY!

Office Bliss……


I had this infographic sent over to me last night and thought it would be good to share it with you:

Thank you to – Daily Infographic for posting this.

The text that accompanied the graphic stated:

Call it a “case of the Mondays,” but surveys and studies show Americans’ happiness in the workplace decreasing each year. It is no coincidence that as job security ebbs happiness dissipates with it. But there are other factors to employee happiness at work, and the infographic below takes a stab at why you should care.

The infographic illustrates that happy and engaged employees do a better job at work and are more likely to stay in their jobs. It’s common sense, yet how many people hate their jobs because the corporate culture is thankless and depressing?

Scroll down to see if your current job is one of the top five happiest jobs (who knew that Biotechnology workers and Customer Service Representative were so darn happy?) and why Facebook is allegedly a positive force at work. Apparently, exposure to Facebook and other social media sites enhances both contentment and productivity. Perhaps I need to show this to my boss…

Now, although the study was carried out in North America, this is the same all over the world. The message is simple, happier employees means a more profitable organisation.

One thing to note is that 52% of people value the relationship they have with their manager or supervisor. How many managers can honestly say they value the role their employees play in the business?

Once again, thanks to the guys at Daily Infographic for posting this, there is a huge resource over at their site, why not pop over for a look.

 

 

 

Top 10 Internet Links of the Week.


Happy Friday everyone! The long weekend is almost upon us! Here are my top 10 links of the week, hope you enjoy them. As always, I will be sharing the Twitter accounts so you are able to follow them. Continue reading

International Ideas Week 2012


What are YOU doing to promote Innovation and Creativity
within your organisation?

Join us during International Ideas Week between 14 – 18 May 2012 which will be themed around Ideas, Innovation and Engagement.

Free events will be held in London and Cardiff.

Running between 9am and 12.30pm there will be advice and practical examples from organisations that are making employee innovation an important part of their business. They not only deliver major cost savings to the business but also a highly motivated workforce that is fit to face the future.

ideasUK launched National Ideas Day on 14th March 2001. The original day (14 March) having been chosen as a special day to focus on creativity and innovation in the workplace on the anniversary of Einstein’s birth.

Due to the success of celebrating this special day our members asked that the celebrations be extended to a week in May. So each year ideasUK International Ideas Week™ is celebrated.

This allows our members to hold special events Continue reading

What does Suggestion Scheme Management Involve?


Do not expect the CEO or senior executives to seek reports. You have been tasked with running the suggestion/recognition programme therefore you must take full responsibility for that.

You have the opportunity to become an expert within your organisation by identifying areas where improvement is needed and who is best placed to implement this improvement. You have the opportunity to be closely involved in assisting with the delivery of your organisations business plan. You have the opportunity to be a key player and you should ensure that your management realise this. You must be proactive.

  • Understand the wider issues facing your business and ensure that the suggestion programme is aligned to address these issues
  • Have an awareness of best practice. Find out what others both within your sector and outside are doing and develop your plans
  • Ensure that your own knowledge and expertise is up to date
  • Network and benchmark with others
  • Ensure that you can give examples of what others are doing and achieving and what you are doing to maintain competitiveness
  • Be aware of initiatives being used within your business and how the suggestion programme will work with them to deliver improved business results
  • If you want to compete with others for top management attention be aware of what keeps them up at night.

What you must do

 Opportunities

  • Can you change/enhance anything about your programme to make it more appealing or beneficial?
  • Think of it as a product – can you repackage/resize or discover new uses, involve more people, enhance outcomes?

Planning

  • You must have a vision. Recognise opportunities or demand in specific areas of the business. Should you continually focus on areas where support is strong and abandon others? Could you take advantage of marketing opportunities within the organisation by joining with other business area or activities?
  • What resources or training will be needed to ensure your team is up to speed? Outline your vision in your business plan. Break down longer-term goals into specific numerical targets and short term aims. Keep your goals challenging and SMART (specific, measurable, agreed, realistic, time related)

Look outside

  • Make it your business to know what is happening outside of your organisation, both in relation to suggestion scheme processes and relating to the business.
  • Know your business environment. If you are aware of imminent change you may be able to turn a threat into an opportunity.
  • Identify the people you respect as experts in your field and find opportunities to talk with them. Investigate opportunities for benchmarking.
  • Be aware of what businesses your management respect, admire or wish to emulate and find out their best practices in relation to employee involvement

Look inside

  • Communicate regularly with all employees within the organisation. Seek feedback both formally and informally.
  • Make use of internal benchmarking and consider any ideas used elsewhere in the business that you could usefully take on board e.g. marketing expertise
  • Encourage experiments and be prepared to take risks in order to maximise the impact your scheme can have within the organisation

Improve processes

  • Analyse the impact of your processes on your stakeholders. Consider what could be done more efficiently. What could be done to increase customer/stakeholder satisfaction?
  • Consider how cost effective improvements could be made. Do you have FAQ’s (and answers) either on intranet or hard copy?
  • Involve own team or work colleagues to help develop and implement changes. Utilise cross-functional teams

Encourage innovation

  • Encourage managers to lead innovation and actively encourage ideas by running workshops, discussion groups or cross-functional teams. Consider using an experienced outside facilitator to run the sessions.
  • Lead people away from thinking innovation must mean radical big bang changes. A lot of small changes can add up to a big change for the better and usually with far less risk
  • Show that the pursuit of innovation is seen as a continuing process. Innovation does not just happen in workshops. Experience has shown that the 48 hours after a workshop has ended can be a very productive period. Make sure that ideas that surface during this period are captured by the suggestion scheme.
  • Ensure your business goals and outcomes are regularly reported in team meetings
  • Build long term goals into your business plan. Set and review targets and milestones. Track key performance indicators (participation, implementation and ROI) to monitor progress

Overcoming Obstacles

  • Recognise that day to day tasks are always going to be seen as more important than the suggestion scheme
  • Combat insecurity and resistance to change through better communication
  • Gain recognition and acceptance for the need to change by discussing the consequences of not taking action
  • Continually raise the profile of innovation and the importance of the suggestion scheme
  • Actively encourage the involvement of all employees at all stages

And finally

Provide regular reports to top management on all aspects of suggestion scheme performance emphasising benefits to business and consequently the importance of the part you play.

 

Which type of Ideas Programme should you choose?


Choosing the Right Suggestion Scheme

The Options

There are two main types of suggestion schemes, a centralised or a decentralised scheme. Some organisations operate both models successfully.

Centralised Scheme

In organisations where there is a hierarchical management structure in place a centralised suggestion scheme is often the most appropriate system.

How it operates

  • A centralised Suggestion Scheme office, with dedicated staff, will receive and process all suggestions.
  • Suggestions are submitted directly to the Suggestion Scheme office, or are passed through line management for validation purposes.
  • Suggestions are acknowledged and allocated to specialist evaluators for investigation. Continue reading