Workplace innovation encompasses a wide range of organisational, technical and social innovations that depart from 'business as usual', and drive value creation while simultaneously delivering rewarding, fair work for employees.
Workplace innovation is a process and an outcome. The process includes the ways things are done in an organisation and the process of delivering fair work. The outcomes may be new ideas about products/services, processes or ways of working, as well as business outcomes such as increased productivity, profitability and growth. Crucially, workplace innovation can deliver positive employees outcomes, such as retention, engagement and satisfaction.
People innovate. Business innovation is, therefore, inextricably linked to people and how a business draws on all of their employees, at all levels, to innovate. The process of innovating comes out of how organisations and tasks are designed, how people are managed, how decisions are made, how technical and non-technical processes interact, how organisations interact with their external environment and stakeholders (e.g. customers/clients, suppliers, competitors and communities, etc.) and how organisation supports meaningful, fair and good quality work for its people.
Workplace innovation practices include a wide range of organisational, technical and social innovations that depart from 'business as usual', and drive value creation while simultaneously delivering rewarding, fair work for employees. It focuses on better use of an organisation's resources in ways that support the delivery of strategic and operational business objectives, improve the quality of work for employees and deliver better social outcomes in terms of health, participation and equality. In doing so, it creates the conditions that support future innovation and fair work. New ideas can emerge and spread across the organisation. Crucially, it involves collaboration, reflection, learning and change to improve workplace performance and deliver fair, rewarding work.
There is no simple check-list of practices for success. That said, Innovating Works… projects identify where – through fair work conditions, dialogue and collaboration – innovation and change can be developed to address business challenges in a positive and sustainable way.