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2011 Nominees & Winners

Congratulations to the winners of the 2011 SPIKE Awards

CPG Category

Diamond Candles Category Winner!

Glaceau Vitamin Water

Life Sciences Category

Prize4Life Category Winner!

HopeLab

Manufacturing / Other Category

Madison Electric Products Category Winner!

General Electric

Technology Category

CDC Software Category Winner! People's Choice Winner!

Cisco Systems

Diamond Candles

Congratulations to Diamond Candles for crowdsourcing new innovations directly from actual user experience. Listen to the Tech-Clarity podcast interview with Diamond Candles

Business Challenge

Getting real time analysis of which future candle scents customers would be most likely to favor.

Project Details

Instead of relying on traditional market research and trend analysis, Diamond Candles has developed a way to crowdsource idea submission and voting from their existing fans and customers for future scents to develop and bring to market. Fans and customers can propose ideas for scents and vote on the suggestions submitted by their peers. Diamond Candles takes the top 10% of voter suggestions and cross-references that with market trend analysis to make final decisions on new scents to develop and launch.

Results / Improvements

Since launching their new crowdsourcing tool only only one month ago, Diamond Candles has received over 5,000 votes on user generated scent suggestions and 250+ new scent suggestions from their existing customer and fan base. This has provided the company with actionable and real-time information to guide their future scent selection processes.

Glaceau Vitamin Water

Business Challenge

Utilizing Vitamin Water's Facebook fanbase to design a new flavor.

Project Details

Vitamin Water’s flavor "Connect" was developed by the company's Facebook fanbase; one Facebook fan won $5,000 for her role in development of the new flavor. The competition allowed VitaminWater's Facebook fans to develop all aspects of the product, from selecting the flavor to designing the packaging and naming the product.

Results / Improvements

Over two million VitaminWater fans on Facebook had direct involvement in the development of the new product.

Prize4Life

Congratulations to Prize4Life for using a social innovation model to accelerate progress towards a treatment or cure for ALS.

Business Challenge

Identifying a biomarker for ALS, a progressive and fatal neurodegenerative disease.

Project Details

Working with the online crowdsourcing organization InnoCentive, Prize4Life launched a $1M Challenge to find an accurate way to track the progression of ALS and reduce the cost of ALS clinical trials. At least 50 teams competed from 18 different countries. Prize4Life’s Scientific Advisory Board voted to award the ALS Biomarker Prize to Dr. Seward Rutkove. As a result, Rutkove’s work has been accelerated and gained the attention and input of thought leaders in the field.

Results / Improvements

Using the biomarker discovered by Dr. Seward Rutkove the cost for a clinical trial will be reduced by 50% or more. As a result, the time required to determine the therapeutic benefit of a given drug in a clinical trial is shorter and requires fewer patients. This translates to potential therapies moving more quickly through the development pipeline, accelerating progress towards a treatment or cure for ALS, and creating incentive to invest resources in ALS drug development.

HopeLab

Business Challenge

To develop effective products that address childhood obesity by increasing physical activity in tweens.

Project Details

HopeLab, a nonprofit organization, created a competition to address childhood obesity by using the global community to generate ideas for products that will help kids stay active. The competition, named Ruckus Nation, asked participates from various target audiences to generate ideas for products that would encourage physical activity. The Skild® software platform was tailored to match the Ruckus Nation brand identity and customized for a kid- friendly experience that would also appeal to more sophisticated participants.

Results / Improvements

HopeLab received 400+ entries from 37 countries and 41 U.S. states, and resulted in six patents based on ideas submitted. In test conducted by HopeLab, many of the ideas submitted have displayed strong potential for HopeLab’s product development efforts. Product prototypes based on various Ruckus Nation ideas are being developed for further user testing and research, and HopeLab ultimately plans to create products that prove effective in getting tweens to stay active.

Madison Electric Products

Congratulations to Madison Electric for using an open innovation model to create a go-to resource for inventors and aspiring entrepreneurs in the industry. Listen to the Tech-Clarity podcast interview with Madison Electric

Business Challenge

Developing products that solve problems, meet a need or increase efficiencies, without breaking the bank through research and development.

Project Details

Madison Electric’s commitment to innovation led the company to launch the Sparks Innovation Center- the industry’s first crowdsourced, collaborative approach to product development. Through their website (www.meproducts.net/sparks), anyone is invited to submit ideas for new products. The Madison Electric team assesses each idea’s merit, and the best ideas are then presented to a focus group through Madison Electric’s Contractor Forum. Based on their feedback, Madison then determines which product ideas should come to fruition.

Results / Improvements

Generating nearly 100 submissions thus far, the Sparks Innovation Center is the point of origin for five Madison Electric signature products and another four in the production phase. Furthermore, the center has evolved into a go-to resource for inventors and aspiring entrepreneurs in the industry. Since launching in 2010, Madison’s Sparks Innovation Center has been featured in Crain's Cleveland Business, received multiple awards, and driven additional traffic to the website.

General Electric

Business Challenge

Leveraging knowledge and ideas beyond the company walls to develop new power grid technologies.

Project Details

On July 13, 2010, GE announced the Ecomagination Challenge, a global contest that called for updates to the existing power grid through 21st century technologies. Together with top venture capital firms, GE committed $200 million to help entrepreneurs develop their ideas and bring them to market. $100,000 awards were offered for each of five winning ideas along with the potential to partner with GE or its VC partners. GE utilized Brightidea’s social innovation management solution as the platform for the contest. User votes determined the most popular proposals. Ideas were routed to subject matter experts and a final panel of judges would determine the winners.

Results / Improvements

The Ecoimagination Challenge website garnered 70,000 users from over 150 countries, contributing 3,844 ideas and casting over 120,000 votes. Twelve projects were selected to partner with GE and receive funds totaling $55 million. The contest’s most popular submissions received a $50,000 award. GE also granted $100,000 each for five promising products ideas in the early-concept development phase and promised to invest $10 million a year in academic partnerships to promote technological advancement through education.

CDC Software

Congratulations to CDC Software for using an Enterprise 2.0 framework to support their agile product development methodology, resulting in improved quality, product delivery times and costs. CDC also won People’s Choice for 2011. Listen to the Tech-Clarity podcast interview with CDC

Business Challenge

Managing multiple time zones, geographies and languages to deliver new products and version releases.

Project Details

To address the challenges in managing a far flung development staff, CDC Software relies on an agile product development approach that enables it to achieve aggressive market delivery targets while maintaining cost structures optimized to current economic conditions. The central part of this development methodology uses social network technologies to develop and deliver software from multiple teams in different countries. These social technologies are used at each step of the development process of the entire product life cycle, and act as a key component of the delivery process, as well as promotional activities targeted to customers and prospects.

Results / Improvements

CDC Software's agile methodology, which uses SharePoint cloud portals and social media as its collaborative framework, has cut the time of product delivery from 24 months to 12-16 weeks. These cloud social technologies have promoted tight collaboration among their R&D offices across 14 countries. It has promoted knowledge transfer and knowledge sharing among the whole global R&D organization which delivers efficiencies in quality, product delivery times and costs.

Cisco Systems

Business Challenge

Accelerating time to market and time to revenue generation.

Project Details

The Cisco Enterprise Collaboration Platform Business Unit (ECP BU) cross-functional development group included team members from program management, product management, user experience, engineering, quality assurance, and their executive sponsors. This highly integrated and networked team decided to use the comprehensive Cisco Quad® platform to form a working community to integrate their work processes, while meeting individual and group needs, essentially leveraging the same collaboration platform that it was developing in rapid iterations.

Results / Improvements

The ECP BU delivered its first major release within 12 months, a reduced product time to market that translated to an estimated $89M savings in net present value over five years. The team achieved an average 12% productivity gain per employee within the development team; the usage of Cisco Quad transformed communications by reducing email traffic by 38 percent and overall message size by 43%. The annual productivity improvement gains alone resulted in a recurring benefit of ~$2.9M per year and ~28,000 labor hours savings.