Innovation Toolkit

One of the things I have discovered over the past three years of working on innovation is that it involves a lot of reading.Yet as we all know, information overload is now a continual risk, and particularly for those trying to add innovation to an otherwise already full schedule and constant workload. Hence we provide the weekly bits of interest posts to try and distil some of the core titbits of the vast amount written on innovation every week, and we are working to develop the Innovation...
Late last year I spoke to the Australian Taxation Office Innovation Community of Practice about DesignGov and what I have learnt about innovating in the public sector. None of this is likely to be new to long term readers of the blog, but at the request of some of the members, and as an opportunity to recap some of the main points, the content is provided below.Ideas are not the bottleneckInnovation can be seen as a five stage process, and as many people have said better than I, innovation is...
In this post, we take a look at another difficult aspect of developing a business case[1. This post follows on from two other business case posts - one on dealing with risk and another on identifying resources required.] - identifying the outcomes and being able to say what success (or failure) will look like in implementing the idea. You should know what you hope will happen, but how will you assess whether it has worked, and whether its implementation should continue? In APS jargon, what are...
One of the things we aim to do with the Innovation Blog is to discuss tools, strategies and approaches that can assist or supplement the innovation process in public sector organisations. In this post we give a brief look at horizon or environmental scanning.Recently a colleague and I had the opportunity to attend a meeting of the Australasian Joint Agencies Scanning Network (or AJASN). The AJASN is a group of representatives from government agencies and others that meet quarterly to undertake...
After 18 months of research, consultation, planning and testing, I am pleased to report that the Australian Public Service Commission has now launched the first Public Sector Innovation Survey. This is a pilot survey designed to investigate innovation within the Australian Public Service (APS) and the factors that contribute to its success or failure.  It is part of the Australian Public Sector Innovation Indicators (APSII) Project, which commenced in early 2011. The project is a collaborative...
We’ve previously asked you about what the innovation toolkit should look like. Now we’d like some help with another toolkit question. For each of the tools identified in Empowering Change: Fostering Innovation in the Australian Public Service we are developing a ‘module’ to try and provide you with information about how the tools can be used.The aim of these modules is to provide public servants with the information they need to know -  what each of the tools are for, how they can be used,...
In September 2012 I reported that an innovation-specific pilot survey had been launched by the Australian Public Service Commission (APSC). The survey was part of the APSII Project and aimed to measure innovation in the Australian Public Service (APS).  I’m pleased to report that the pilot survey was very successful and provided insightful information on public sector innovation.  A more detailed summary on key findings is available but here are some of the highlights: An innovation-specific on...
In a previous post we had a look at dealing with risk when preparing a business case. In this post I'll cover another part of the business case that can be problematic for innovations - identifying what resources will be needed.One of the difficulties in implementing a new idea is that it can be hard to tell what the call on resources will be. If the idea is sufficiently novel it will be different to what has been done before and therefore require an estimate rather than a full accounting of...
One of my favourite features of our Public Sector Innovation Toolkit is the IDEAS framework, developed by Professor John English.It's a simple series of questions that help you consider whether an idea is ready to be pursued.I find it a really useful tool for helping me assess my ideas and for working out which ones I should prioritise and where I can get the most value out of focussing my efforts.It's also a great prompt to make sure I don't forget about the areas where my idea might not be so...
On this site we talk about innovation all the time, but sometimes it’s important to remember that not everyone is familiar with what it is or what it really means.In response to my previous post on the Innovation Toolkit one of the commenters (Con) said that the Toolkit should start from the start and be a course in innovation. I’ve also been asked recently by another agency whether there were any short overarching pieces on public sector innovation.While there are some resources available on...