When launching an internal ideas competition, it’s critical to get the word out as soon as possible, using all available online and offline platforms. The problem included in the call for entries should be challenging but solvable. Furthermore, the situation should be presented in detail but not in a restrictive manner. Employees who participate in the competition devote some of their leisure time to finding a solution, but they can also work on it during work hours if circumstances allow. 6 to 12 weeks are available to generate ideas, depending on the complexity of the problem. Individuals or small groups of people may participate. Various diversity groups should all have an equal chance to participate and submit a solution. The participants may submit their solutions anonymously online or as part of a brief pitching session at a company event. Following the presentations, the entire organization votes on which idea is the best. The winning team receives adequate resources to develop and execute their concept.
An internal ideas competition can increase employee engagement and lead to innovative solutions to problems of all kinds, provided that a wide range of diversity groups is reached and the competition is communicated in a motivating way. Following up on the most promising ideas after the competition and putting them into action is crucial to achieving a sustainable positive effect.