The role of your customers in the innovation process

Innovation is “the multi-stage process whereby organisations transform ideas into new/ improved products, services or processes, in order to advance, compete and differentiate themselves successfully in their marketplace.” – Beregheh (2009).

The above definition is a bit of a mouthful, but I think it sums up innovation well. In today’s fast changing business world, innovation is one of the most important aspects of business transformation. Through research and development, RWA uses technology to drive not only our products but also our own productivity, which ultimately benefits our customers and clients.

This is why, when RWA considers innovation, we begin with the customer in mind:

Your customers are the most important aspect of your business. Without them, you will not be able to trade profitably. Your customers should be loyal and want to buy products and services from you and in turn, you should be developing a rapport with repeat business from them.

From this customer base, you will want to explore how you can provide more value to your customers, particularly value that will get them to engage with you more and buy more products and services from you. It is this value that differentiates you from your competitors.

Speak to your customers and find out what they want from you. There may be services or products that you do not provide, but which they would like to buy from you; or, they may suggest improvements to the service that you already provide that would make their experience better and possibly more cost effective for you at the same time.

Market research is an extremely important tool in enabling innovation and change. Those resistant to change will find it very difficult to disagree with your customers if you have their support into how you innovate and deliver your services.

If your business is struggling to innovate, grow and change, then consider ways in which you can overcome the barriers and focus on the enablers of innovation. Your customers are a great place to start. For more information about how RWA can support your business challenges or if you would like to share your own examples then please connect with me and get in touch.

Tom Wood

About the author

Tom has worked at RWA for over 12 years, starting as Operations Manager before taking on roles as Operations Director, CEO and most recently as Director leading the company into the digital age.

Before joining RWA, he was involved in helping develop the operations of one of Wales’ fastest growing utility consultancies as well as leading the Key Accounts team of a major commercial energy supplier.

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