Current innovation status within ADvTECH
In order for us to provide an appropriate plan for the future of ADvTECH in relation to Innovation and how they utilise it, we must look at their overall current standing with regards to innovation. An in depth analysis of the following can be found in our previous blog posts.
Culture of Innovation
With ADvTECH Innovation is something that is seen as “critical to the future of education, (Staff, 2014). According to the report the company encourages a Culture of Innovation within all tiers of their activities being “students and learners innovating, alignment and association with innovative partners and educators innovating”. In order for them to remain market leaders they have to maintain the culture of innovation within the company as this allows them to keep ahead of the curve. Instead of following trends, ADvTECH tries set them.
Leadership cultivating a culture of innovation
Innovation is said to be “a key strategic imperative for the ADvTECH Group”, (ADvTECH Group Annual Report 2012, n.d.). As the company runs of a hierarchical structure instruction as to how the company operates comes from the top down. As stated in ‘ADvTECH and Their Leadership’, ‘ADvTECH is a company that wants to stay ahead of the curb in the private education sector and their leadership is not only a driver of their business but also their culture of innovation. ADvTECH unfortunately does not have a definitive or structured approach to creating innovation within their company.’ “While ADvTECH’s strong leadership team has delivered on (their) successes, this would have not been possible without strategic direction from the Board”, (Thomas, 2015).
The Main Drivers of Innovation
Leadership is a clear driver of innovation as leaders ‘foster creativity’. “ADvTECH is run by a board of director, however each sector has its own group of leaders in their field that manage and maintain standards. Nothing falls upon an individual but rather a cohesive collective of people working together towards a unified goal. Each person has a place in the ranks of the company and contribute effectively, attributing to the companies’ success.
Emerging technologies is what we have discovered to be the main driver of innovation within ADvTECH, ‘virtualising’ operations is seen as the way of the future for them, (Ascent Technology, 2013). “This has meant that (their) educators have to stay abreast of the innovation curve and technology trends”, (ADvTECH Group Annual Report 2012, n.d.). This means remaining relevant with “modern educational demands”, (ADvTECH Group Annual Report 2012, n.d.). Part of ADvTECHs current growth stratey is “growing its leading market position while enhancing the use of digitally enabled learning in schools and tertiary institutions”, (Thomas, 2016).
Barriers and Enablers of Innovation
The Enabler of Innovation are linked to the drivers, however the way that they do business and their partnerships are also enablers of innovation with ADvTECH.
The barrier that is hindering ADvTECH from further innovation is the entity not having an innovation value chain. For our suggestions to ADvTECH, this is specifically what we would like to focus on and hopefully change.
A Way Forward for ADvTECH
The Innovation Value Chain is a key tool if used correctly have major benefits in terms of an organisation level of innovate and by implementing on there are great gains to be made by the entity from financial growth, elicit an even more positive brand image in the mind of the consumers also it will contribute to the organisation pulling in individuals with high innovation levels and high quality employees looking to make a difference. “The innovation value chain offers a comprehensive framework for managers to take an end-to-end view of their innovation efforts, pinpoint their particular weaknesses, and tailor innovation best practices as appropriate to address the deficiencies. It breaks innovation down into three phases – idea generation, conversion, and diffusion.” (Brikinshaw, 2007).
By utilizing this approach effectively the organisation can identify any bottlenecks of innovation which in turn aids is determining the best solution possible in order to overcome the bottle neck stages. By implementing a successful innovation value chain the organisation will gain substantial competitive advantage in the current market place they are operating and in ADvTECH’s case it would be private education sector and optimizing their efficiency of operation.
The Innovation value chain offers for product development in ADvTECH’s case it would be rather the service of education as a pose to a tangible product as they can see where exactly there is the greatest growth potential and then capitalize on this area by having a offering that adds value to the consumers as well as the community. Value chain considerations should be core components of business process and planning including, sales, marketing promotions and stakeholder’s interests and benefits. This is because unanticipated disjunctions can destabilize the best strategic goal. The emergence of globalization has given rise to many opportunities and problems as well, for example, many companies are requiring establishing relationships with new types of suppliers- we saw ADvTECH following this trend by the recent collaboration within Africa with the acquisition of the GIS Gabon International school in Botswana.
The need of innovation value chain is attracting and energising current and new stakeholders, so if the organisation competitive advantage is driven by boundless stakeholders the company will be innovative because great stakeholders pride themselves in thinking differently and the develop and implement new and novel ideas, so if organisation do not embrace the level of innovation that attracts these stakeholders they risk losing them to firms that encourage innovation. The innovation value chain not only results in market-oriented improvements in products and services, but also enables businesses to streamline operations within and between themselves – resulting in higher levels of
efficiency than would otherwise be possible. It also enables businesses to create competitive advantages that are very difficult for competitors to copy. Innovation is also one of the best ways in building market share and growing profitability of the organisation, in today’s very competitive and saturated markets innovation is key to the survival of any organisation as if innovation is not embraced by companies trying to add value to their consumers they risk losing them to competitors that implement innovation in the workplace. The innovation value chain abeles organisations the opportunity to have a unique customised approach, it also aids the stakeholders involved to unleash new and improved products and offering to their customers.
Therefore by ADvTECH implementing a Value Innovation Chain the organisation will benefit to a tremendous extent and allow for them to reach a level of innovation that will allow for the organisation to expand as already leaders in the private education sector.
In order for the Innovation Value Chain to be implemented effectively all key leaders need to be on board, informed and educated correctly on the process as the leadership within ADvTECH is what drives the business. It would also be extremely effective to introduce members to the board whom specialise in innovation as this would be a source of innovative inspiration and a driving force from within the company.
As ADvTECH is running off a hierarchical structure placing experts in innovation in key positions will filter down throughout the company. Each sector of their operations should have someone to refer to on the matter. ADvTECH has been falling short in terms of planned and strategised innovation and the Innovation Value Chain will open them up to new possibilities and allow them to remain the leading force in the private education sector.
We have a feeling that ADvTECH will keep leaving their mark on the industry and we implore them to take note of our recommendation for the future.