Measuring innovation: the human factor

Innovation is not a stationary object. It’s a process that transforms ideas into value – a way of doing things that every company has to adopt at its core.

Since 2000, the focus on innovation has been moving to the value within organisations’ people: not only employees but also stakeholders and consumers. The emphasis is on finding new means and methods to motivate and engage these people in the search for new paths and answers to vital business challenges. In other words, innovation seeks to find how to unleash their talent and expertise – their full potential to innovate.

The Global Innovation Index (GII), an annual reference publication that gauges countries’ innovation results and capabilities, devoted its 2014 edition to the topic ‘The Human Factor in Innovation’, describing the human factor as ‘the fundamental driver’ and ‘the heart of innovation’.

Developed by Cornell University, INSEAD and the World Intellectual Property Organisation, GII surveys 143 economies around the world. In 2014, it used 81 indicators to establish countries’ ranking, based on the following framework.

measuring innovation

Switzerland, the United Kingdom and Sweden topped the 2014 rank. This index considers, among other indicators, new product creation, the quality of infrastructure (e.g. access to information and communications technology), and employees’ competence acquisition.

What about companies? What metrics are they using? We’ll see that next.

Are you using these innovation metrics?

How can you measure innovation management?

Pedro do Carmo Costa, Exago’s director and co-founder

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