Two years ago we decided to create an online community that increase collaboration and stimulate innovation in the food and packaging industries. A year later, we launched a digital open innovation environment. Now, we share with you some of the key factors in the development of OpenUp.
During the development of OpenUp, we have gained a lot of experience about what it takes to make a digital platform to function as an open innovation environment. Our experiences can be beneficial both in the development of new innovation platforms but also to you as a user so you can choose the digital innovation environment that suits you best.
1. Active hosting
A big advantage is that the platform is driven by people who have an active interest in the development of the industries. The possiblity to connect challenges driven in OpenUp with physical activities creates a new dimension of networking and also ensures a certain level of competence.
2. A clear niche.
Another benefit is that the innovation environment has a distinct focus so users have a clear understanding of what kind of questions and discussions that are relevant to the platform and its collective competence.
3. Different degrees of openness.
The digital platform should offer the possibility to both target and run entirely open challenges. Some challenges fit the large audience, while others are better suited for a smaller selected group, such as specific specialist or interest groups. The platform should also offer several different process options, depending on the complexity of the problem and the level of secrecy of the challenge.
4. Clear incentives.
The reasons why users should contribute with ideas and offer their expertise must be clarified. Whether it’s for money, enhanced cooperation, new contacts or any kind of recognition, it is important that there is a system and a culture that favors contributers as much as it benefits those who run challenges and collect ideas.
Last but not least, it is important that the platform is easy to use and offer guidelines so inexperienced users can get help in the innovation process. It should also offer easy access to personal contact with the platform moderators.
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