Why is innovation important for businesses?

By Eleanor Bailey

close up of someone drawing a lightbulb in their diary
Want to find out how innovation could win you £5,000? Read to the bottom!

Disruption is a good thing. That’s right, we said it, sometimes you shouldn’t follow the rules. Finding new ways to do things, through innovation, ensures your business is serving your customers in the best way.

What is innovation?

Innovation doesn’t always mean Einstein-looking mad hatters inventing in their shed. It’s about thinking in a different way and disrupting the current methods of doing things to shortcut, improve, or totally change for the better. In business terms this means changing how you do your business now to serve your customers better in the future.

Why is innovation important?

Without innovation nothing would ever improve – we’d still be stuck having to choose between using the phone or the computer whilst the din of the dial-up mocked us. For your business, innovation is important because it makes sure you stay ahead of the game. It’s a way to grow, stand out, and maybe even become an industry-leader. You really can’t argue against faster and easier methods which save you and your customers time and money. Lack of innovation means customers are just waiting for advancements to make your service obsolete; here’s the kicker, if you don’t innovate, someone else will.

Real-life examplesApe looking up

Just think about: what happened to Blockbuster when Netflix popularised online streaming, Uber’s growing popularity compared to traditional taxis, Amazon’s success pricing out shops, Facebook’s social media break through, Google’s ever-growing monopoly, or even the fact that nobody carries cash anymore and instead pay through contactless cards and phones. Technology is constantly racing ahead and clever businesses use this to find ways to shortcut traditional business methods.

Be an innovator!

Don’t worry, innovation is entirely possible. The biggest barrier is simply not realising that your business needs to embrace change. Nothing can move forward by staying in the same place, so always keep your eyes open for ways to make your service easier. Finding ways that customers can self-serve, such as through apps and websites, is an extremely successful and simple way to do this.

At Water Plus, we’re really keen on promoting innovation. After recent warnings about the sustainability of water, it’s more important than ever for businesses to save water. If you’ve got an innovative idea on how businesses or the public sector could use less water, and save money, we want to hear from you!

We’re running a competition, with a prize of up to £5,000, for the best idea.

Please note: This competition has closed. Thank you to all those who sent in an entry. You can read more about our Search for Innovators to help businesses or the public sector save money or reduce costs by using less natural resources in the future here.

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