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Six Strategies to Encourage Innovation in Software Development

Innovation in software development is a key for any business to set its products and services apart from its competitors. This also applies to software development and is very important because its engineering teams concentrate more on technical issues. Organisations or Businesses need to build a culture of innovation to stay on top of their game. 

There is an adage that says “Nobody solves a problem with the same thinking used when creating it in the first place.” This applies not just to the world of business but as well as anywhere else. To continue evolving, organizations need to think outside the box, aim at new things and innovate, mostly in the area of software-driven businesses. 

But wait…… what does the word innovation mean exactly? 

Innovation refers to the method by which a product or a service is renewed and developed to date by applying new strategies, initiating new techniques, or establishing successful ideas to create new value.

Introduction 

Software development has evolved greatly in the last few years. The change has made technology so powerful that to speed up your business, you need to drive innovation into every product and service that you create.

Today, innovation is more than a word used to make others think your business is changing. It’s the thin line that sets growing businesses apart.

However, most people start businesses from a courageous and entrepreneurial mindset, and this doesn’t work over time. They become less forward-thinking, and uncertain, and end up finding themselves in a pattern.

 To stay winning,  businesses need to step out of their comfort zone, move with the change, cultivate a culture of innovation among employees, and motivate them to be creative with ideas. 

 Let’s take further steps in ways or methods you can use to drive innovation in your business, especially in the software development sector.

  1. Grant the team time to be creative

Innovation doesn’t happen when you want it to happen. It takes time to build anything great. If your team uses all their working hours every day to complete their tasks, then there won’t be any room for creative thinking. And Innovation needs patience and time to 

 breed creative ideas.

Giving your developers ‘thinking time’ is vital in generating ideas that can transform the business or move it forward. Most organisations set apart days for thinking time where they brainstorm any creative ideas the employers might have and see how the company can execute the best 5 ideas. Another method is organizing hackathon sessions where developers can dedicate time from their schedule probably twice a week to create and test new ideas. 

  1. Introduce an Implementation

For innovation to be effective, businesses need to have a system to implement these ideas. Just creating a team where you brainstorm creative ideas isn’t enough, you need to go the extra mile and execute them. 

Innovation in software development needs a functional system Where engineering managers take the drive to execute their team’s ideas and build a community where constant innovation is always encouraged.

 For example, Apple is well-known for its innovations in software, and other services. Their innovation strategy depends on a structure that revolves around functional expertise. When they need to fill a senior management role, they choose someone with deep expertise in that area. This innovative strategy produced extraordinary results which led them to grow to a $260 billion company with more than 137,000 employees.

  1. Create a functional workspace

Having a working workspace is often forgotten by most software development companies. 

Studies show that innovation was rapidly linked to high-performing workplaces which not only prioritized group working spaces but also dual employees. innovative thinkers mostly brainstorm in communal and outdoor spaces.  Create a clean and conducive workspace for your team. 

  1. Acknowledge and reward great performance in your team. 

Recognising your developers’ contributions has been a key to job satisfaction and future performance. This helps employees work hard towards success by rewarding their efforts. When you have a  team that is putting a considerable amount of time and energy into building your products and services, don’t forget that acknowledging an effort is an impressive method of motivating everyone.  

Awards and appreciation are always linked to big bonuses, you can reward them with something as easy as more paid leave, flexible work hours, movie tickets, or a stipend to assist them in developing their projects. 

This will help boost the morale of your team and help in your innovation strategies. Happier, fulfilled teams are universally more productive than underappreciated and overworked.

  1. Create a personal  offshore software development team

Creating an offshore team for software development can be effective for any organization if you are focusing on innovation. The Rapid change in the markets has driven a need for ongoing innovation. This has increased the concept of offshoring, which has become a go-to strategy for companies that want to optimize innovation, execution, and cost.

Countries like India, Ukraine and many others develop world-class engineers in software development. This is achieved by recruiting software engineers and building your offshore team in one of these countries. Investing in developing an offshore team gives you the powerful help of developers who can spend more time pushing boundaries in your industry and it can boost the company to gain an edge in brainstorming. 

  1. Leaders are the forerunner 

The first action for innovation in software development comes from the top, from the leaders. Team leads and managers are largely responsible for creating an environment that encourages innovation. 

You can produce unity, trust and steadfastness among everyone in your company by leading by example and interacting with your developers now and then. If they see you embracing creativity and acknowledging your employees, they are likely to build confidence and perform their duties. 

Conclusion

Software technologies have been in demand due to the pandemic and rapid technological change. 

However, innovation is the path for businesses to meet up this demand and set themselves apart from their competitors. 

Without having strategies to keep up, you are likely to be left behind. You can develop an effective way to boost innovation in software development in your organization with this point listed above. Software development can’t evolve without innovation or will always compete through innovation, and you can’t achieve this in the first place without finding the right team members to work with and enforce them.

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