Blackmores needed to embed a structured approach to innovation within the organisation to enable a more customer-centric and agile approach as well as a mechanism for seizing innovation opportunities that sit outside of traditional New Product Development.
What we did
- Worked with Australian leaders across Blackmores to get alignment on the need to embed a sustainable approach to innovation within the DNA of Blackmores, as opposed to relying on a few passionate individuals. These leaders were also taught how to lead for success when it comes to supporting teams to implement their innovation toolkit – for example, by providing time and autonomy to work on innovation projects and the support to get out of the building and explore new ideas with customers.
- Trained over 140 Innovation Champions across Australia and Asia. These Champions play the role of doing innovation but also coaching and facilitating others through Blackmores’ best-practice approach to innovation.
- Conducted an Innovation Maturity Index to understand Blackmores’ baseline performance on the nine key drivers of innovation.
- Developed and implemented an organisation-wide centralised innovation process.
- Engaged the broader Blackmores community in building innovation capability by running innovation workshops at the annual supplier conference, attended by over 150 of Blackmores’ suppliers.
- Delivered expert innovation mentoring to Innovation Champions to support their application of the innovation toolkit and process to Blackmores-relevant projects.
The Blackmores Executive Team are now aligned on the importance of embedding innovation within Blackmores and adopting a strategic and customer-led approach to achieving growth through innovation.
With the formal launch of the Blackmores Game Changers program, employees from diverse teams such as IT, Finance, Quality & Regulatory and Sourcing are now asking what problems need to be solved for customers and contributing to innovation at Blackmores, rather than innovation being confined to Marketing and NPD teams.
A physical space – the Blackmores Game Changer Lab – has been created. This Lab serves as a simple environment that has the tools to lead innovation workshops at the fingertips of the employees within Blackmores and is presently being utilised daily.
And here are some specific project outcomes from FY19:
- In collaboration with another multinational consumer goods company, Blackmores ran an idea generation workshop using Inventium’s tools and process. This led to two marketing ideas being taken up by a major retail customer. Testing these ideas delivered an increase sales volumes over an eight-week period and secured an ongoing strategic partnership.
- By putting Inventium’s approach to experimentation into practise, Blackmores was able to get an early read of customer behaviour on a new product idea, generating savings in research and production costs, and invaluable time.
- Through running experiments on the Blackmores Subscribe website, revenue from subscriptions have more than doubled in twelve months. Subscriptions now contribute significantly to online sales.
- After observing health care practitioners and speaking directly to them to understand their frustrations, the Blackmores Institute have been able to better serve pharmacists, increasing traffic to their website by over 600%.
- The Blackmores team in Thailand made substantial savings in production costs by creating an MVP to test various product options around ‘product authenticity’ directly with customers.