People and training

Using innovation as an explicit criterion in recruitment, particularly of SES and EL2s, both rewards innovative people and makes a strong statement about the importance of innovation to the agency. It can help build the innovation appetite of the organisation and its innovation capability. It sends a signal to those wishing to be promoted to senior positions that innovation is expected and wanted.

Another important strategy is to ensure that diversity, which is important in the innovation process, is considered in recruitment strategies.

Making available training in innovation and creativity can also be useful, while recognising that there are limitations to what this can achieve. Training in understanding the innovation process and how to encourage and harness innovation and creativity could be useful for some staff at the beginning of an innovation process in order to build momentum.

Secondments and supported study are other useful ways to develop staff in a way that will build links and networks, help diffuse ideas and enhance innovation capability. Other forms of short-term collaboration with other agencies, such as cross-agency projects, may also be useful in this regard.

A useful measure is to factor innovation into induction programs for staff, including an overview of the innovation process and support within the agency. This can emphasise what roles staff can play in the agency’s innovation system.