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Scaling Innovation

What’s the Big Idea? Why most innovations fail to scale and what to do about it

What value is an innovation that cannot be scaled?

Organisations across the board are hedging their bets on innovation to meet changing customer needs, improve operational performance, and build long-term value and growth. But although they are investing millions in R&D, innovation centres, and external partnerships, few seem able to achieve scale in areas such as smart factories, artificial intelligence, agile, or automation.

Since this inability to scale is a primary barrier to realising commercial goals, we wanted to find out what works and what doesn’t when scaling innovation. To these ends, in the latest report from the Capgemini Research Institute – What’s the Big Idea? Why most innovations fail to scale and what to do about it – we interviewed 40 executives from organisations around the world that have achieved scale and four eminent academics who focus on innovation in their research and training.

We found that while companies are generally quite good at generating and incubating new ideas within innovation centres or open ecosystems, they are less successful at scaling the results, for reasons ranging from over-reliance on technology, to a lack of focus on what customers actually want. If they play their cards right, however, companies can still get ahead in the game. We believe that to do so they should treat the achievement of scale as a specific and unique discipline, put in place the right innovation governance, and build a culture that encourages taking tough decisions on scaled innovations.

For more information on scaling innovation download the report.