What is idea crowdsourcing?

Using the right idea crowdsourcing platform as part your organization’s innovation strategy can accelerate innovation from seed to execution and increase overall ROI.

Let’s break down the benefits of idea crowdsourcing platforms and how implementation enables you to leverage collective intelligence.

Definition of crowdsourcing

Crowdsourcing is a term made up of the words “crowd” and “outsourcing”. It can literally be defined as outsourcing an activity to the crowd, a community.

On a personal level, everyone benefits from and contributes to this participative and collective action. Who hasn’t contributed to or benefitted from reviews on Google, content on Wikipedia, or contributed ideas to the group you’re a part of.

For organizations, crowdsourcing is a tool that helps access and utilizes the know-how, skills, experience, or creativity of an audience to create or improve new products, services, or processes. An organization can engage and activate its employees or its external communities via a digital platform, a questionnaire, or a contest for example.

Idea crowdsourcing is becoming increasingly popular among enterprise companies looking for diverse ways to improve continuously. It’s a testament to its effectiveness in aligning offerings or processes with customer needs.

While the value of crowdsourcing is no longer in question, organizations don’t yet fully realize how valuable crowdsourcing platforms can be in their innovation strategy.

The benefits of crowdsourcing ideas in organizations

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Generate and identify innovative ideas

Organizations can develop otherwise undiscovered solutions by opening up their innovation practice to a wider audience. Whether that’s internally or with partners and customers.
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Accelerate innovation processes and reduce costs

Crowdsourcing platforms reduce the research and development phases of the innovation process as you idenitfy and develop high-potential ideas at an accelerated pace.
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Improve employee engagement

Rallying cross-functional teams around shared challenges allow you to reinforce their sense of belonging and maintain or boost motivation.
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Build a strong employer brand and corporate culture

Crowdsourcing makes it easier to unite and motivate your internal and external communities around strategic issues and showcase your organization.

Why idea crowdsourcing platforms are necessary?

In today’s globalized environment, brainstorming, workshops, and post-its can no longer meet the innovation demands most enterprise companies face. While idea crowdsourcing isn’t a new method, it has gained momentum since the 2010s and has accelerated during the pandemic.

Business leaders currently face unprecedented changes in the world – and ask themselves how their company can go from good to great. How can they ensure rapid transformation of their organization? Discussed elaborately in Jim Collins’ books on the well-known topic of “build to last”.

Innovation management covers all actions taken to identify, develop and execute innovations within an organization: new ideas, new work methods, and new products and services.

Innovation processes must reveal latent ideas within organizations’ ecosystems if they aim to address market reality. By nature, those ideas are more innovative as they exist outside the usual environment the organization operates.

This approach has gained popularity with the availability of tools that enable organizations to leverage collective intelligence for structured transformation. Currently, Agorize is the leading platform providing this value to more than 300 enterprise companies worldwide.

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“A good idea is something that does not solve just one single problem, but rather can solve multiple problems at once. It's easy for people to come up with a good idea that can focus on one problem, but that's not good enough.”

Crowdsourcing, an added-value creator

Companies have recognized the innovation potential of crowdsourcing for years.

PepsiCo, RATP, Majorel… are just some of the organizations that are using this method to improve and transform themselves to last. Whether they’re addressing startups like L’Oréal or employees like PepsiCo, they have all experienced the benefits of adopting an ecosystem mindset.

Inventing a new “healthy” drink concept, building the city of tomorrow or finding the scientific formula that will save hundreds of lives, it is all becoming everyone’s business. Like Schneider Electric, which organized an innovation contest for students in 2021. The Go Green Challenge attracted 25,000 students who submitted nearly 2,800 innovative ideas for the development of sustainable energy.

Majorel, an international leader in customer relationship management, chose Agorize’s idea management solution to create a crowdsourcing platform for its employees. Thanks to the platform, Majorel’s innovation process is simplified. It also allowed them to more easily identify high-potential ideas and engage the best talent.

"The innovation process is simplified, transparent and dynamic, thanks - among other things - to a unique, user-friendly and efficient tool. Also, the collective co-construction model enabled by the platform supports a strong message to our teams and our customers."

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The silo is broken in favor of collective thinking, encouraging collaborations between internal teams but also with partners, customers and even future recruits.

An example of crowdsourcing in retail.

Agorize recently helped a major retailer with its “customer centric” transformation process. The retail company’s management wanted to involve all customer-facing employees in the search for ideas to transform the customer experience (Cx). The approach had to be adapted to the populations of the head office and in stores. In order to maximize the contribution of the teams, it was mandatory the crowdsourcing platform is accessible to employees who were not in the office or who did not have computer equipment.

To do it, Agorize deployed its complete idea box solution, which easily met the company’s specifications. To simplify the user experience, the connection is made by a unique identifier (SSO) including via smartphone and QR Code. For several weeks, ideas were submitted in one click on a centralized space. At the same time, the possibility of collective voting allowed the detection of the ideas with the highest potential.
The most popular ideas were presented to the Board. Three projects are currently being implemented: a climbing wall has been installed in each store to create a memorable shopping experience and encourage repeat visits to the point of sale.

Enterprise companies Ideation funnel supported by Agorize software

Giving each voice a channel for expression and evaluation

Digitalization and the Internet have given crowdsourcing an unprecedented reach, allowing for global, faster, more reliable exchanges. As long as you use a platform to centralize ideas that are adapted to your organization, you are ultimately more innovative in leveraging ideas from a large number of contributors than a “group of elites.”

Agorize’s belief is that ideas and talents are everywhere, you just have to reveal them.

Agorize is the most comprehensive innovation and idea management software. It is powered by a team of experts and a global community of over 5 million innovators: startups, students, and developers. Agorize offers a Software as a Service (SaaS) platform solution used by more than 300 large organizations around the world to transform themselves, strengthen employee engagement, and unite their ecosystem around their strategic challenges.

They appreciate the fact that they benefit from an innovation engine but also from the energy source to make it work.

ROI is measurable, more quickly optimal, and sustained year after year using a centralized exchange platform to drive the innovation process efficiently.

Since 2011, Agorize has developed a unique offering, integrating:

  • An innovation management platform
  • A community of innovators
  • A team of experts

Its primary purpose is to help companies accelerate their innovation, notably by reducing the research phase.

It is used for several purposes, including:

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Sourcing technologies and startups

Discover tangible solutions that are ready to be depoyed.

Agorize innovation for good

Innovate with purpose

Engage in responsosible and sustainable transformation processes.

Agorize innovation for good

Employer brand and human capital

Make innovation a tool for employee commitment.

Our crowdsourcing solutions to meet your strategic challenges

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Idea crowdsourcing

Deploy your ideation platform for your employees or external communities. Define a theme and let your audience feed it with their ideas, vote for the best ones and participate in your improvement.

Co-create with your ecosystem

Create your innovation contest with your target audience: students, startups, tech profiles, employees, etc. Use collective intelligence to solve strategic problems.
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Give purpose to innovation

Find innovative solutions to meet one or more of the Sustainable Development Goals defined by the UN.

Accelerate your innovation efforts with crowdsourcing

Let’s have a talk about how we can help you.

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