Idea management is a process where you collect, organize, and evaluate ideas and feedback about your product. It's a customer-centric practice, so understanding them defines your product’s roadmap. Essentially, idea management will find a way for you to delight customers and improve business growth.
Some product managers use static spreadsheets and documents to organize their ideas
, but that proves to be difficult later on. You’ll have a harder time tracking and prioritizing ideas because they’re scattered across different platforms.
This will eventually lead to a growing backlog of ideas while you need to update your customers on your products. Hence, you’ll need software and tools to make idea management more efficient. It can capture feedback and requests from customers and gather them in one place. It then also saves you time from manually managing everything.
6 Ways to Drive Business Growth Through Idea Management Systems
1. The Best Idea Management Software for Product Improvement
No product is perfect; it's all up for improvement, and this can be done with the help of idea management software
. An idea can be further improved as long as you keep your resources organized. Imagine brainstorming while looking at a board with data and sticky notes. Inspiration might strike just yet while gazing at what you’ve gathered.
The software ensures that good ideas don’t fall through the cracks and are lost forever. It will help you evaluate and prioritize the right ideas for your roadmap.
2. Improve your idea management processes.
Some examples of business processes are sales operations, customer service, HR, and finance. And these processes have been formally or informally standardized in every organization you can think of.
Despite being standardized, these processes aren’t perfect, though they’re functional. Most of them haven’t been adapted according to workplace changes, and if they have, there’s still room for improvement.
You’ll find lots of opportunities to make minor adjustments that have a significant impact on saving money or time. Hence, it also has a big impact on the business as a whole.
If you're just getting started with idea management, your employees might have some thoughts to share. How will they improve their current work processes or what ideas do they have to improve the workplace? You’ll find that it leads to useful and practical opportunities to improve.
3. Gather ideas for new products and services for existing customers.
When asking your salespeople for feedback, expect to get a list of needs and problems you need to address. Your current products might have some needs that have to be met. Frontline employees especially have what it takes to come up with new product ideas or services for those.
With every idea comes a new business opportunity and the potential to reach new customers. But it’s important to address existing needs to improve the satisfaction of current customers. In solving those needs, you can also find or introduce new services or business ideas.
Many of those needs don’t even require a lot of effort or investment to fix, but they’re highly profitable. It’s no exaggeration to say that you’re hitting two birds with one stone using this tactic.
4. Brainstorm Ideas that Will Save Resources.
Every process you do will always create waste, so it’s a matter of how many resources you can save. Often, people don’t realize how much they’re wasting, like how half of the food globally produced becomes waste.
Hence, companies have been looking into sustainable ways to run their businesses. And where else can you get these ideas but from your employees who understand business? As a manager, you might be able to pinpoint the source of the waste, but you might overlook it too.
Your frontline employees who deal with the waste would know what you need to do. And more often, they’d be delighted to reduce waste and help the business save resources. You can document their suggestions in idea management software and further develop them.
5. Brainstorm Ideas that Will Save Time
Time is also tremendously wasted by businesses on all kinds of processes. Inefficient methods and improper prioritization can eat up time that can be allocated elsewhere. Some companies waste 30% of their time in meetings, resulting in more overtime to get things done.
The executives and employees both want to make a profit, so it’s only fair that time be spent wisely. Time is gold, and employees need to create more value than their time costs the company. Hence, you can ask employees to pinpoint the areas that need to be addressed to save time.
For example, during peak season, you can reduce the meeting times of people involved in time-consuming projects. Let’s say that they’re editors buried in piles and piles of work. If you have notetakers for the meeting, have them share those notes and action items with the absent editors.
That way, editors can use the supposed meeting time to get work done. And the notetaker makes sure that the editors don’t miss anything important from the meeting. This helps them focus on their urgent tasks and save lots of time, thereby increasing work productivity.
Idea management is a significant part of business growth with the help of the best idea management software. You can collect, organize, and evaluate ideas more efficiently compared to spreadsheets. The software can create a centralized workspace so you can find everything you need in one place. It’s more efficient than manually managing a spreadsheet, email, or document.
Though idea management might sound trivial, the smallest things can have significant business impacts. It can help you address your company’s needs, which will boost customer satisfaction. Addressing such needs can also create opportunities to offer new services to your customers. By improving your services, your current customers will also find more reasons to keep supporting your business.
For example, idea management can improve your products because you prioritize customer concerns. You can also brainstorm ways to save time and resources with your employees. And then suggestions can be stored in the idea management software for further development. Hence, idea management systems and platforms can drive business growth over time.