The cure for Apple is not cost-cutting; the cure for Apple is to innovate its way out of its current predicament”. Steve Jobs
When Steve Jobs returned to Apple after over a decade away from the company, he prioritised innovation as the driving force with the potential to transform the brand. He was right. From being close to bankruptcy to becoming one of the most powerful brands in the world, there is no doubt that it was Apple’s commitment to innovation that has helped make them the brand they are today.
As technology enthusiasts, we place great value in our team’s efforts to innovate. With a team dedicated to Research and Development (R&D) projects, an ‘Ideas Box’ open to all employees suggestions and a structured Ideas Evaluation Process, we nurture creativity and technical knowledge to create successful products.
The power of R&D
As a technology business, we are placed within a fast-paced sector driven by innovation. With the likes of Alexa and PokemonGo transforming our interactions with technology, R&D is shaping our daily tasks.
The success of the likes of Elon Musk, Bill Gates and Mark Zuckerberg, have showcased the power of R&D. All championing innovation, their brands have proved that investment in R&D is fundamental for a business to become a pioneer in its industry.
If we were to look at Tesla’s rise in the manufacturing industry, the correlation between investment in R&D and financial growth is evident. With Tesla’s R&D budget growing from approximately $93 million in 2010 to $834 million in 2016, it comes as no surprise that the business saw a revenue growth from $204 million in 2011 to approximately $7 billion in 2016.
Whilst everyone may not have Tesla’s R&D budget, most businesses regardless of their size can commit a percentage of resource to R&D and see a return in profitable results. In relation to the size and nature of our business, we commit 10% of our employee resource to R&D. This investment enables us to design, create and sell our own bespoke software, CRM systems and gaming experiences.
Our Director of Innovation explains:
“the primary goal of the R&D department at stickee is to further the capabilities and expertise of the company by investing time into new ideas and exploring new technologies that can further enhance our business lines”.
So, why do we invest so much in R&D? In a nutshell, because it works. Some of our most successful products are a result of our R&D team’s investment in ideas which require extensive attention and resource.
Competitor Pricing Intelligence
With years of experience of working within the mobile sector, our team were interested in removing a problem which many retailers face: pricing products appropriately and competitively.
When creator of the software, Ed Genochio joined the team, he began working with our Innovation Director to develop a suite a B2B products under ‘Competitive Edge’, from which Magpie was conceived. After undergoing numerous iterations, development stages and modifications, Magpie was launched. Now established within the mobile telecommunications sector, the software provides in depth insight into crucial data for pricing strategists in some of the biggest brands in the UK.
Bridging the gap between data experts and commercial decision makers,Magpie offers users a clear and concise understanding of important information. Rather than only offering excel spreadsheets packed with masses of data, an interactive dashboard presents bitesize data which is easy to consume.
Possibly the most disruptive technologies which have made waves recently are Virtual and Augmented Reality. Fascinated by it’s potential, we quickly invested in the relevant hardware and registered as a VR game developer on Steam.
After brainstorming potential virtual experiences, the team decided to create a game which would appeal to all ages. The result was a virtual Cricket Game which gives users an immersive cricket experience, with varying difficulty levels, bowling speeds and numerous other features.
The engaging cricket game got the attention of the England Cricket team’s sponsors Natwest, and is now being used by the sponsors in their T20 games this summer.
From improving workflow processes, to being a creative brand promotional tool, the possibilities of innovation make it a department which deserves attention.
By dedicating a team to R&D, we can ensure ideas are given time and undergo a structured reviewing process. With so much success, we have and will continue to commit 10% of our resource to R&D.
If you want to find out more about our innovative business solutions, or have some ideas that we could help you get started with, then get in touch with our team.