Armed with Sharpies, Gantt charts, and sticky notes, innovation and R&D teams are accustomed to rolling up their sleeves and collaborating in person. In fact, over the last ten years, corporate teams increasingly built special-purpose labs and collaboration spaces, bringing in colleagues, business partners, and customers to ideate together.

Then the COVID-19 crisis changed everything. Suddenly, innovation teams could only connect with each other — and with customers — through screens. The worry was palpable and universal: “How can we do our jobs effectively if we can’t be together?”

For our latest report, our team wanted to understand how the crisis is reshaping the ways in which innovation leaders think about the use of digital tools and platforms to support innovation activities. Two hundred respondents to our survey shared with us the specific tools and platforms they are using; the level of ROI they’re getting; and the challenges they have to overcome to bring new digital solutions into their organizations. We also conducted qualitative interviews with a handful of IT and innovation leaders to gather their advice (and lessons learned the hard way) about tools and platforms.

This report includes insights and recommendations for innovation leaders seeking to get the most out of digital tools, and also for tool developers seeking to build productive relationships with those leaders. The report features downloadable slides with our survey data, selections from our qualitative interviews, and multimedia components to help guide you as you consider the role that digital tools and platforms play today — and should play in the future — within your own organizations.

This report was produced by InnoLead and sponsored by Startgrid.

Sample Data

Video Insight

Full Interviews
Sanofi Pasteur’s Chief Digital Officer on Making Virtual Collaboration Work
September 17, 2020 | By Alex Slawsby
As Chief Digital Officer for Sanofi Pasteur, Natalija Jovanovic leads a global, cross-functional team responsible for developing and executing the digital strategy of the largest vaccine developer in the world. In late July, the US government awarded Sanofi and GlaxoSmithKline up to $2.1 billion to accelerate the development and manufacturing…
Digital Tools for Innovation Can’t Just Be “Vitamins”
September 10, 2020 | By Alex Slawsby
When it comes to digital tools, some offer real solutions. Others provide “vitamins” that are nice to have but not essential. Learn how to find the tools that solve real challenges. 
Making the ROI Case for Digital Innovation Tools
September 23, 2020 | By Alex Slawsby
Amy Kramer of Maritz Global Events shares the Executive Dashboard structure she uses to clearly communicate the value her team is creating in the current climate.

Thought Leadership
Digitizing Innovation: A Call to Action
September 7, 2020
Digitizing the management of startup ecosystems is no more daunting than managing complex processes in sales, marketing, or supply chain automation. Get best practices…