Companies today can face various challenges that impact their survival. These challenges often arise from rapid technological advancements, changing consumer behavior, and the evolving business landscape.
For instance, the hybrid work model has increased the need to balance collaboration and productivity in a virtual and physical environment. Automation and integration can be tricky as many systems must be synchronized for data to flow smoothly between them. Meanwhile, the rise of cyber threats and data breaches has become a significant concern for companies. Furthermore, attracting and retaining talent can be painful for companies without a helpful staffing solution. These are just some of the obstacles, among others.
Small companies are just some of the ones facing these challenges. Companies of large size often require more advanced systems with multiple integrations, tools, and resources. To stay productive and maximize profits, big corporates need innovative business solutions offered by startups and to foster collaborations with them.
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How can a startup's innovative solution help corporates?
Innovative solutions allow corporates to remain competitive in a crowded marketplace. They're also an essential component of a compelling corporate innovation strategy. By leveraging new technologies and advanced capabilities, corporates can develop a successful innovation strategy that helps them remain in their leading position in the industry.
In addition, thanks to the COVID-19 pandemic, many companies have learned the importance of being agile and resilient through a crisis. And innovative business solutions help corporates maintain their performance level through crises. According to McKinsey, companies investing in innovation through a crisis not only outperform their peers in the crisis but also perform better in post-crisis years. Learn more about what corporates look for when seeking a collaboration with startups:
How to collaborate with startups and implement their innovative solutions
To collaborate with startups, corporates can attend relevant startup events, such as selection days, trade shows, seminars, and hackathons, to meet with startups and learn more about their innovation strategies. In this video, discover more about how to find the right startup for your organization:
Once you find a suitable business partner that offers an innovative solution that could work for your company, the next step is implementation. The process of implementation requires careful planning and communication between all involved parties. It's important to identify the resources and processes you’ll need to implement the innovative solution, understand the risks associated with it, and create a timeline for its deployment. Finally, all stakeholders should regularly monitor progress and adjust plans if needed.
Common mistakes to avoid with innovative solutions
One mistake corporates often make is failing to do their due diligence when making a partnership decision. This means they don't take the time to research the startup and understand its approach, technology, business model, market position, etc. It's important to be aware of these elements before deciding to invest in a partnership with a startup.
Another mistake corporates make is not having well-defined goals when working with innovative solutions. Without clear objectives, it can be difficult to assess the success of a project and measure its value. Failing to establish a clear strategy and timeline for the project can lead to missed deadlines and potential financial losses. It's important to set realistic goals and define a timeline for the project that all parties can stick to.
Finally, corporates need to be aware of the risks associated with implementation and develop strategies to manage them. This includes understanding how intellectual property rights will be handled during collaboration, creating contingency plans if something goes wrong, and communicating regularly with all involved parties.
With so many options in the market, it can be tricky to find the right innovative solution that works for your company. Watch this video to learn what questions corporates often ask to determine which solution to choose.
Now with the right questions in mind, here are some startups with various innovative business solutions that can become an essential part of your innovation strategy.
Business IT solutions
Business IT solutions are essential for providing businesses with secure and reliable systems, especially when it comes to cybersecurity. In today's digital world, cyber threats such as phishing, malware, and data breaches can cause severe damage to a business’s reputation and bottom line. To protect their customer data effectively, enterprises need to stay one step ahead of threats by implementing business IT solutions. These allow them to optimize security systems and ensure the systems are up-to-date.
- Today's corporates deploy sophisticated and complex infrastructures with multiple database types hosted on various clouds. Unfortunately, this has made monitoring data exfiltration and policy violations increasingly tricky. Dig Security is a startup that combines capabilities from Data Security Posture Management (DSPM), Data Loss Prevention (DLP), and Data Detection & Response (DDR). Its innovative solution helps corporates discover, monitor, detect, and govern their data through a unified policy engine.
- Gomboc.AI bridges the knowledge gap between DevOps and security engineers while working with Infrastructure-as-Code configurations. The solution simplifies the implementation of secure configuration changes by leveraging a shift-left approach to cloud infrastructure security. It allows both DevOps and security engineers to collaborate on improved cybersecurity measures.
- Korambit.AI stops software supply chain attacks, which have become a growing problem for businesses of all sizes. The innovative solution automatically detects malicious code injections and trojanized updates to closed-source packages in the ecosystem.
Business communication solutions
Business communication solutions enable corporates to collaborate, share information, and communicate in real-time. These solutions provide a platform for internal dialogue and can improve collaboration among teams and departments. By using cloud-based services, businesses can access data from anywhere, allowing them to share information quickly and easily while reducing the need for physical meetings. The most popular business communication solutions include cloud-based services such as chat, audio or video conferencing tools, file-sharing tools, collaboration tools, and more.
- Demodesk is an intelligent online meeting tool for remote sales and customer service teams. Its features, such as automated scheduling, preparation, follow-ups, and data reporting, help sales convert prospects faster and increase customer retention. The startup claims to have developed the first entirely web-based screen-sharing technology. Rather than using local desktops, it provides a virtual display as the medium to meet and engage with customers.
- AVATOUR provides an innovative solution to remotely explore a facility or job site. By combining full-motion 360° capture with real-time communication, Avatour simplifies remote inspections, marketing tours, and training sessions - all while keeping employees safe. An Avatour host can collaborate with up to nine remote guests in a real-time virtual tour using an affordable camera and smartphone. Users can bring clients on guided tours, inspect sites from afar, or consult experts worldwide.
- Layer is a customer conversation platform that empowers businesses to create interactive and personalized customer experiences throughout the customer journey. These experiences are claimed to drive conversions, increase engagement, and improve employee productivity. Layer includes a conversation design system, an experience development kit, and an integration development kit on top of a managed infrastructure.
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Automation and integration are crucial for modern businesses because they increase efficiency and reduce costs. Automation solutions can streamline processes and free time for higher-value tasks. By automating repetitive and mundane tasks, automation solutions help corporates become more efficient and productive while reducing costs. Many automation solutions on the market also help reduce errors and improve customer service, allowing customer queries to be handled quickly and efficiently.
- ElectroNeek provides enterprise Robotic Process Automation teams with a tool to rapidly and inexpensively build bots that don't require licensing. This innovative solution allows for greater scalability of the RPA process, resulting in significant cost reduction across industries. ElectroNeek claims businesses can save up to $3m with its automation solution.
- Workato is an AI-based middleware platform that enables businesses and IT to integrate their apps and automate business workflows with robust security features. It helps companies integrate and automate faster from the massive and growing fragmentation of data, apps, and business processes today. Its customers include Box, Hubspot, and Monday.com, among others.
- Luminai is an innovative solution for connecting all SaaS applications. It serves as an operating system, saving teams from having to juggle and tab between a dozen different apps to complete just one task. Taking the workflow process and recording it with video, Luminai can automatically script those steps into integration within the main workspace.
Human Resources (HR) solutions are essential for businesses, as they help manage employee-related tasks such as staffing, onboarding, payroll, and benefits. By using HR software, companies can automate many tasks, saving time and money. Additionally, HR solutions can help manage employee performance and track employee progress. For corporates, a right HR solution is essential in building professional, productive, and creative teams that drive company performance.
- Censia's Talent Intelligence Platform™ provides comprehensive, unparalleled talent profiles. It's built as a lightweight, plug-in solution that can operate independently or be integrated via API into any human capital management (HCM) system. The solution is equipped with features like workforce intelligence, gap analysis, diversity and inclusion, talent mapping, internal mobility, and more.
- Swarm's HR solution helps grow teams with its innovation profiler and training, innovation team designing, and innovation culture assessments. It identifies innovators in the teams and provides training to develop their skills. It claims to help businesses design high-performing teams and drive a culture of innovation.
- PeopleJoy helps employers design education assistance plans to draw and retain employees, bridge the racial and gender wealth gaps, and boost financial stability while promoting mental well-being. It works with several small and large employers nationwide, including SKF USA, Prysmian Group, Children's Hospital of Philadelphia, and the University of Pennsylvania Health System. Its services include student loan payment assistance, tuition reimbursement, student loan advisory, and college financial planning services.
Innovation is essential for any business that wants to stay ahead of the curve in today's fast-paced world. Corporates must adopt innovative business solutions to keep a competitive edge in their industry. Technologies such as artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning (ML) can potentially transform customer service, sales, marketing, and operations. AI-driven tools like chatbots can provide automated customer service and help businesses streamline their processes. ML can automate tasks such as data analysis, assisting companies in making better decisions faster.
Collaboration with startups is a necessary step to foster innovation within a corporate. By integrating startup's innovative business solutions into their operations, corporates can ensure their workflow goes smoothly and remain successful for years to come.
Want to learn more about mastering innovation? Explore our seriesInside the Corporate Mind today to continue to build your toolkit for successful corporate innovation.