Embrace innovation: the importance of future-proofing your organization

Most organizations have plenty of forward-thinking people who want to innovate. Getting initiatives off the ground, however, is a different story. Oftentimes, it requires taking a leap into the unknown, and there is a good chance you will only achieve the desired result after several attempts.

Moreover, you will be held accountable if things don’t go right the first time. Sticking with your old ways or implementing internal alternatives can feel safer. Nevertheless, it is a shame if you don’t innovate, because you won’t improve.

Choosing a different route can lead to many new insights. True, it requires more time and effort. But once you succeed, there are ample benefits to reap. In this blog, we will list the three main reasons why an organization should embrace innovation. Hopefully, it will set you off in the right direction and help you unlock your company’s potential!

1. Future- and millennial-minded

Today’s young talents are the employees of the future. Therefore, it is not only important to attract them; you should also offer them a work environment that allows for growth and development.

Especially well-educated millennials want to contribute their bit and like to be heard. When they present their ideas, you should not make them feel as if they run into a stone wall. Allow them to help you change and improve, and they will.

 2. Continuous improvement

‘How can we do things in a different and better way?’ It is a question you should be asking all the time. Only then, you will be able to organize your processes in the most efficient and effective possible manner. Co-creation can be very fruitful in this context: by involving your customers or suppliers in your innovation process, you can work on securing your organizational future while strengthening your relationships.

Incidentally, don’t forget to make participants in an experimental project sign a document which states that you may not yet meet all requirements during this stage. At the same time, tell them you firmly believe that your efforts will be advantageous in the near future.

 3. Team and company culture with adaptive power

The world is innovating at a rapid speed, and management can’t afford to lag behind. For example, when flex working found its way to offices all around the globe, many organizations quickly redesigned their interiors to welcome the concept.

No more office booths or assigned desks: even CEOs should sit randomly at any desk available at the moment. It sounded great, but in many cases, management had claimed its ‘own’ corner within a month. The result: work processes were not adapted to new ways of working, and nothing improved.

In our other innovation blogs, we will discuss how you can recognize and eliminate such innovation killers!

Innovative initiatives: how do you realize them?

In our last blogs about innovation, we discussed the importance of embracing innovation and explained how to recognize and eliminate innovation killers. Now, it is time to look at the requirements for innovative ideas and the way you can realize them.

Every process of innovation follows a pattern of trying, failing, learning and trying again. So before you can innovate, you actually have to realize the ideas you have been thinking about for awhile. What does it take to get a good initiative out of one’s head and into reality?

 1. The speed of trust

Innovation is about letting go of the obsolete – and, therefore, about loosening control. It is about trying out new things, that can lift up and boost your organization – or make everything a little less great. You never know what’s going to happen.

Many organizations struggle to make those courageous decisions, as this increases the risk that things could go wrong. It is, however, important to trust your experts if you want to get something innovative off the ground.

For example, before the 2007 launch of the very first iPhone, Apple employees were granted trust and a certain amount of freedom to develop a device that was completely different from any cell phone ever released.

No one knew what was going to happen, but they went for it anyway and it turned out really well for the company. Your innovation process asks for the same courage – and trust.

2. Failed attempts? No problem!

Innovation comes from the Latin word ‘innovationem’. Until the 16th century, being a ‘novator’ wasn’t a good thing. They were treated very carefully and were not to be trusted, as a ‘novator’ was a heretic or a disbeliever.

That’s right, innovation comes from people who didn’t feel comfortable with the established religion and came up with their own ideas. If you want to be innovative, come up with your own ideas, even if not everyone’s immediately on board. Because although it turned out well for Apple, sometimes it takes a long time before innovative processes bring any benefit to your organization.

It is crucial to realize from the beginning, that innovation processes hardly ever go right the first time. While trying out new things, you discover what works and what doesn’t and this way you learn by trial and error. Apple did, Triggre did, and so will every other organization.

At the same time, it is important to take damage control into account so you (and your employees) are well prepared. For example, explain to your test group what you are trying to accomplish and have them sign a document stating that you are at an experimental stage. Also, pick the right process to experiment with – not all processes are suitable!

3. Leading with a compass (not with a clock)

When you are planning an innovative move, it all starts with the ‘why’. Ask yourself why your organization is making changes and create a goal before you start. After awhile, you can check the progress your organization has made, by asking if you are getting closer to the ‘why’.

‘Are we heading into the right direction?’ is the key question in innovation processes, and it should be one of the few you are (re)answering along the way. If the progress gets you closer to fixing the reason why you are innovating, your organization is on the right track.

When implementing innovative initiatives, it is essential to lead with a compass, rather than a clock. After all, you don’t know how long a process will take. You take steps forward and you take steps back, and the project plan will most likely never be on schedule.

Still, every move will get you closer to innovating and being better than before. You can only determine at regular intervals whether you are still on track towards your final goal: innovation!

Innovation killers: how to recognize and eliminate reluctance

In our other blog about innovation, we discussed why it is important for organizations to embrace innovation. Today, we would like to help you tackle a related issue: innovation killers.

Many organizations have employees who want to innovate, but who cannot seem to get their initiatives off the ground. The majority tends to cling onto the ‘safe’ status quo, which makes it risky to pursue innovative ideas. After all, if it goes wrong – and it often does the first two or three attempts – you will be held accountable in an innovation-unfriendly environment.

This is a shame, because sticking to old habits inevitably means that you won’t improve. Below, we will list three common innovation killers. If you can recognize and address them, it is easier to eliminate reluctance and take your first steps towards innovation!

1. Being swayed by the issues of the day

Most companies are always busy organizing sales, delivery, and transportation. Oftentimes, innovative initiatives have to make room for such urgent matters. However, if you think about it, organizations with this mentality are fighting a losing battle.

After all, they can’t improve their efficiency. It is only sensible to take a moment to consider why your processes are organized the way they are. Only then, you can spot the gaps and make improvements.

 2. Compliance-related concerns

There is an ever-increasing amount of laws and regulations that you need to comply with. Consequently, many decision makers leave the green-lighting of new initiatives to their IT compliance experts.

However, experience shows that the answer completely depends on the individual handling a proposal: many people reject initiatives because they are afraid to make a compliance-related mistake.

Due to the associated fear of things going awry, compliance can be a real innovation killer. Therefore, a change in mindset is crucial: organizations and their employees need to realize that compliance can actually assist in setting up innovative initiatives.

 3. The widely dreaded bureaucracy

Many organizations are hindered by the seemingly countless departments a proposal needs to pass through before any action can be taken. Employees with innovative ideas are often scared away by such drawn-out processes. They give up before they have even tried.

One way to break through this cycle of bureaucracy is to take calculated risks. On a case-by-case basis, try to determine whether it is acceptable to opt for a faster-than-usual route when it comes to an innovative initiative.

If so, you could try it out among a small number of end customers. Have them sign a contract stating that they are aware of being in a test group upfront. This will reassure the legal department and ensure that your end customers are involved in your innovation process!

Why are IT projects often a hassle?

Managers – especially those with an entrepreneurial spirit – often encounter numerous issues when trying to get software projects off the ground. At Triggre, we regularly meet such managers, and we understand their frustration which stems from the fact that they want to accomplish their IT goals at a pace that their IT department can’t keep up with. But why is that? Why are IT projects a hassle?

A lack of understanding

Suppose you’re a forward-thinking manager with innovative ideas, and you ask your IT experts to adjust or develop something you consider to be minor. Their response? “That will take three weeks – at least.” You don’t get it. This should be simple, so why are they making it difficult? The long wait doesn’t help either; it only widens the gap between you and your IT people. The result: a mutual lack of understanding.

Other interests

If you’re depending on an external IT supplier, their interests differ strongly from yours. They don’t want to empower you to a level where you don’t need them anymore. Their business benefits from returning customers – which is why they want you to come back and ask them for solutions. At Triggre, this is not an issue, as you can realize your ideas independently. This means our success depends on our customers’ success – a very different approach than most software companies opt for!

New insights

As a manager, you gain new insights every day. Your IT experts, however, don’t offer room for these. They dive into an idea for six months, and once they present you with the result, your vision may already have changed fundamentally. At times, this can be very frustrating and cost-ineffective!

Insufficient involvement

IT people tend to respond to fresh requests in a very bureaucratic manner. A variety of forms need to be filled out and several meetings are organized, often restraining a manager’s innovative thinking process. As a manager, you can see the urgency or benefits of your idea, but you quickly find yourself bending over backwards to break through a bureaucratic, abstract wall.

Do you recognize these issues that make the realization of innovative software ideas a hassle? And are you tired of them? Don’t hesitate to contact us to discuss your opportunities. At Triggre, you can create your own software. It’s fun and hassle-free!

Digital revolution: grab the opportunity and boost effectiveness

‘Digital revolution’ is a hot topic, especially for B2B companies. With the introduction of industry 4.0, increasingly more machines have been connected. But how can you capitalize this in terms of business?

Why bother about the digital revolution?

Suppose you are a supplier and your machines provide you with very valuable data. If you have the right software which can read out this data, you will be able to analyze it and predict how your machines will behave. This, in turn, means that you will be able to create effective maintenance and earning models as well as combine all data to serve your customers better – objectives that virtually all businesses aim to achieve.

To give you a clear picture of the importance of the digital revolution, we listed its three key advantages for you below. These explain why you should join ‘the movement!’

1. Zero touch

Basically, this means that you need less employees and can work more efficiently with the ones you do have as a result of automation. As the banking industry currently demonstrates, running your business with less people gives you the opportunity to work leaner, smarter, and faster. Once you digitalize your processes, the employees you hire will only be cream-of-the-crop people who can greatly improve their efficiency because automation supports them.

Additionally, don’t underestimate the benefit of empowering your customers: they demand to organize more things independently, and expect transparency on everything.

2. Improved planning and control cycles

The fact that machines, vehicles, and equipment yield data is very interesting, especially to industrial branches. Production lines and factory processes offer a wealth of data, which should be given a place in the digital landscape. If, for example, you send the data retrieved from systems and equipment to an ERP system, you can improve your planning of maintenance and control. This will ensure that you can close better, more cost-effective deals.

3. Digital business models

Say, you are selling agricultural machinery or maybe raw materials. In the old days, you would set up an office and hire great sales people to get on the road and meet your targets. However, things are different in this day and age. The majority of your prospects is aware of online information on prices. They will opt for a time saving way of purchasing, for example via their own customer portal.

So, how do you attract and convert new leads? You will need to create new, smart business models and develop digital tools to retrieve useful information from your online (sales) data.

What we are saying is: embrace the digital revolution. Use it for your business by gaining the insights you need, and you will be able to realize a significant boost!

Towards modern digitalization in three steps

It is safe to say that ‘digital enterprise’ has become a buzzword. At Triggre, we have noticed that increasingly more organizations are wondering how to digitalize their business models. Their key question: where should I start?

Digitization versus digitalization

First, let’s make an important distinction. A lot of things that business do may be digitized, but are not digitalized. Whereas digitization mostly refers to scanning paperwork and emailing it to others as Excels or PDFs, digitalization encompasses the process involving data that can be read out using a system. The latter is the more interesting of the two. So, what steps would you need to take to get there? The three steps listed below will get you off to a good start!

1. Data and ERP: let them communicate

Many companies have an ERP system in place. The main goal is to ensure some form of interaction with it. For example, if you have a website where customers can place an order, or if you own a machine-filled factory, you need to establish a link to your ERP system. To this end, you should ask yourself how you can best organize it and make it scalable. The point is that you need to do something with the data provided to you – be it by customers, suppliers, or machines.

2. Processes? Make them leaner!

If you need to deploy less tools, you will require less people and be more scalable. However, you will probably not want to start major replacement processes, as you have a lot on your plate and merely twenty-four hours a day. Therefore, it is crucial to improve by taking up one initiative at a time. Once you have successfully completed it, you can move on to the next one.

By working on processes in such short intervals, those involved will be able to witness how digitalization can help your company move forward. Consequently, you will grow efficiently, and everyone will be on board every step of the way.

3. It all starts with you (that is, your company)

If digitalization is your goal, you should come up with an internal process to deal with it. Your company needs a structure and company culture that support the quick development, testing, and going live of digital initiatives. Lean agility and speed are indispensable in this regard.

Lastly, keep in mind that you don’t have to be running a corporate to establish these things. Medium-sized business are increasingly preoccupied with digitalization. Today, it is relevant to everyone!

Using company DNA as a differentiator

A good product can only take you so far. If it’s not rooted in the depths of your company and team – if there’s no clear spirit that you thrive on – it’s difficult to achieve your goals and grow your business. A prerequisite for creating added value for your customer is, after all, to have a well-thought-out company DNA in addition to your product. For that reason, Triggre has spent a considerable amount of time defining it. Because it’s our team and their beliefs that make for a successful product and equally successful collaborations with customers!

Simplifying everything

First and foremost, we want our customers to get their questions answered. In most cases, we can provide quick solutions to burning issues. Admittedly, this requires a creative mindset; sometimes, problems need an out-of-the-box approach. And other times, we need to ask our customers a few smart questions to clarify their exact goals and motives. Subsequently, our team quickly analyzes the core of the issue, coming up with a smart solution.

Alignment of interests

Our success depends on our customers’ successes. That is Triggre’s basic principle, and therefore, we try to help them within the shortest possible timeframe. This means, among other things, that we are always quick to offer a helping hand. By making our customers’ interests our own, we create an alignment, ensuring that we are always on the same page.

Company DNA

The above examples stem from our company DNA. We set up ten basic DNA rules, each of which focuses on finding the best solution by joining forces, using our team power and collective knowledge. We aim to surprise our customers time and again in our own, unique, Triggre-like way. And last, but not least: we pick up new information quickly, and we are never done learning!

Triggre Guides: a behind-the-scenes look

Triggre is built on a strong belief in revolutionizing the status quo of software creation. And with outside-the-box ideas come one-of-a-kind people. Let us introduce you to the team that has played a big part in realizing our success. Or as we like to call them: Triggre Guides.

Goodbye consultants, hello guides

Consultants have a habit of telling you things you already know. Moreover, they cost you a lot of money, and in a bang-for-your-buck attempt, they write lengthy reports and organize time-consuming meetings.

We brainstormed. And we concluded that we didn’t want to burden our customers. Our goal has always been to unburden them. So we invented Triggre Guides: well-trained coaches that guide our customers through Triggre in a fun, playful, and informal way. They have the ability to empathize with the customer’s world quickly, and they’re very knowledgeable.

Furthermore, they’re a customer’s go-to person for everything. Improvement, inspiration and support: name it, and your Triggre Guide will assist you in every conceivable way.

What’s a typical Triggre Guide like?

Of course, every Triggre Guide is an individual with unique character traits. But all Triggre Guides have a few things in common. For example, each of them is:

  • Enthusiastic: they love what they do;
  • Committed: they are there for you when you need them;
  • Creative: they come up with much-needed creative solutions. As we wanted to make Triggre an easy-to-use, hassle-free solution that always works properly, we couldn’t allow for complete programming freedom. Consequently, our Triggre Guides need a creative mindset to help customers incorporate their ideas into Triggre. And they’ve been doing a great job at it; customers have been able to realize their desired functionalities under Triggre Guides’ guidance time and again.

In summary, our Triggre Guides are millennials in the truest sense of the word. They want to make a real contribution when fulfilling their jobs, and they need a certain degree of freedom to accomplish it. This millennial spirit perfectly matches our philosophy!

Software creation: the ‘why’ and the ‘how’

Why do you want to create software in the first place? What motivates you? Probably either one of the following goals: saving costs by automating more aspects of your business or generating more returns. Or, ideally, both of them.

No software, no future

Expensive and comprehensive software creation processes prove to be a hurdle for many organizations. This results in a problem: a lot of time intensive and repetitive tasks are not automated, new business opportunities are missed. If, however, you want to make your business future proof, you need to make software the heart of your business model. In a few years, all business models will have some sort of software component.

As developments follow each other rapidly today, you simply can’t afford to have ‘static’ software. If you want to change your software radically ten days after completing it, you have to be able to do this hassle free. And if you wish to try out a brand-new app and receive real-time user feedback, you should be provided with the opportunity to do so.

Just the fun part

To bring the fun factor back in creating software it needs to become easy-to-adapt, not-complex, and user-friendly. A solution that can repeatedly stand the short tests of time and is able to grow with your company. That’s what we had in mind when we created Triggre.

Can everyone just create software using Triggre? That depends. Have you clarified your business processes and are you able to write them down? Then yes, you can work with it, as Triggre generates your software based on the business process input that you provide it with. All software created with Triggre is automatically tested, you can only create software that really works. We check whether your processes are properly modeled on the fly and issue a clear warning if they need your attention.

In conclusion: yes, you can create software without ever having to see a single line of code. Just know your business process through and through, and you will only experience “the fun part” of software creation!

Becoming an idea generator

Let us tell you briefly about one of our customers. They’ve been working with Triggre for a while now, and after every client meeting, they’re full of inspiration. Triggre welcomes their creativity, allowing them to add new value-adding ideas all the time. Becoming an idea generator and putting all their insights smoothly into practice has made them very happy. And it’s sure made software creation fun!

What triggered Triggre: an innovative journey towards empowerment

Empowering companies with great ideas: it has been Triggre’s purpose from the very start. Born out of a frustration about lengthy, expensive software development processes, Triggre helps organizations with a creative spirit realize their ideas. Let us tell you a bit more about our innovative journey!

Disruption is key

After working on major IT projects for several years, we concluded that there was a lot of room for improvement. Long-winded processes that required more patience than creativity were wearing us and our clients out. So we asked, ‘What if organizations could create their own software?’ If they’d have a tool for realizing their tech-savvy ideas – from client portals to platforms – they could start creating stuff barrier-free. No more worries about where to start or how to budget. Software creation should become just as easy as working with an Excel spreadsheet.

Our philosophy was at odds with industry standards, as we believed that changing the way you create software also means changing your business model. Simpler said, in our ideal software creation world, the IT consultant has become superfluous. That’s true innovation: disrupting the current way of working. And it has opened up a whole new world for our clients.

From software hassle to carefree creation

Traditionally, an initial version of new software is so heavily reviewed that after the first feedback collection, experts often claim it’s better to start all over again. Before you know it, you’re trapped in a seemingly endless cycle of meetings, steering groups, and project groups – without any tangible results. Or, the well-known software hassle.

We believed things could be different: carefree, creative, and even fun. What we wanted to do is change the experience at a fundamental level. And the only path towards carefree creation is that of empowerment: if clients are able to create software independently, the hassle will be taken out of software creation.

We composed a brand new team with a progressive vision and a different DNA. The result? Triggre.

What it’s all about: triggers

Triggre: where does that name come from? Well, a fundamental feature of our tool is that it can be used to support business processes. As the traditional business process modeling method is highly complicated, we cut back to the core: a number of triggers lead you seamlessly through the process. That’s the heart of our system. And that’s why we named it Triggre!