We promise to deliver six actionable opportunities for business innovation in just four weeks. We get working software into our clients' customers' hands in 100 days. To achieve this we've developed a Rapid Business Innovation framework. Here's how it works in practice.

Momentum is key to successful business innovation. We’re finding today just how quickly businesses need to respond to new situations - and not just because of Covid 19. Only those agile enough to adapt can keep pace with changes in customer demand, technology potential and market context.

Speed is a novelty in many corporations. Old school business processes are big on planning and short on doing. They’re too linear to address complex and changing variables. They don’t employ the right breadth of expertise - often taking a technology first approach - or they lack the authority necessary to cut across departmental silos. Often, the response is to give it up as 'too hard to do' and then relegate innovation to a Lab.

We have achieved more in the last 9 weeks than in the last 2 years.

- John Flint, MD, HSBC Retail Banking on Made by Many's contribution to the Nudge project

Over the past 14 years we’ve moulded together a different way. We’ve taken the best of Lean Start-Up, Agile software development and Design and Systems Thinking to create a powerful alternative and used it to prove that, in a big corporate setting, it’s possible to deliver innovation quickly and successfully.

The goal of Rapid Business Innovation is to recreate business with digital at the core, driven by customer centricity and data analytics: not for it’s own sake but to enable adaptation to new situations and create and capture value quickly. Early success enables strategy to emerge and crystallise around the new opportunities unlocked across the business.

In a typical situation, within four weeks we’re able to identify half a dozen clear opportunities to make significant business impact. We will then prototype and test one or more of these - getting working applications and services into customers’ hands - to give the leadership team and stakeholders a clear view of how to grasp the opportunity and deliver business impact.

Within four weeks we’re able to identify half a dozen clear opportunities to make significant business impact

The process involves multiple stages of rapid making, testing and learning. Unpacking the problem into short stages enables exploration of multiple aspects of product fit, with confidence and at speed.

How does it work? Rapid Business Innovation has three essential features.

1. Take a system-wide outlook

See the business as a system and look for any available lever to drive new value: customer need, operational efficiency, technical or commercial innovation. We look to unlock hot-spots of latent value along and across the value chain. This unbiased, holistic approach seeks out the right balance between desirability, business viability and the technical or operational feasibility of an idea. It’s a framework for both identifying opportunities that meet specific business objectives, then prioritising according to their potential to create the desired impact within a realistic timeframe.

2. Employ expert inter-disciplinary teams

We deploy empowered, expert, interdisciplinary teams to identify and exploit the best opportunities. A highly skilled team with a breadth of expertise across technology, design and business strategy can work together in creative tension to gather insights, validate ideas and prove concepts - making almost at the speed of thought. The team should have a direct line to leadership and work within the business in close collaboration and constant communication, with pre-set decision points to enable momentum to be maintained.

3. Iterative adaptive process

This is an evidence-based and iterative practice. At the start of an engagement we gather insights directly from customers, employees and managers to make an early informed assessment of digital strategy, then prototype and test to understand performance in the real world, adjusting and evolving the strategy accordingly. Making creates a bias for action; action generates evidence; evidence builds momentum and trust.

Making creates a bias for action; action generates evidence; evidence builds momentum and trust.

The Lean digital mindset is focused on creating early value, establishing product fit, then scale; it’s tested through co-creation with customers and rapid prototyping of propositions, interactions, technology and operations.

We go to market early and utilise our clients’ assets - be that customer relationships, data, operational systems or ready capital - to provide scale.

As the strategy is executed a portfolio of investment opportunities emerges around a coherent set of complementary product and infrastructure programs.

Proof points

This framework is tried and tested over thousands of hours of consulting experience in Fortune 500 companies; our clients see it as an empowering alternative to big consulting. Rapid Business Innovation has spearheaded successful large scale transformation programmes at Carlsberg, Finnair, the V&A Museum and at the UK's leading biotech start-up, Oxford Nanopore Technology. We've used Rapid Business Innovation effectively during the Covid 19 pandemic, working in Tokyo with a leading convenience store chain, in Switzerland with the World Economic Forum and in the UK with the Institute for Global Health Innovation at Imperial College. .

To find out more, call Tanja Brockmeyer on +44 7539 849979 or drop us a line.

William Owen

William Owen Founding Partner

William is founder and partner at Made by Many. He advises senior executive teams on digital strategy and product innovation.


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