Survey Reveals Industry-leading Innovation Drivers
In a jointly sponsored survey, Cushman & Wakefield and CoreNet Global have found that it takes more than a vision and mission statement to produce true innovation in today's corporate environment.
The research underscores the importance of collaborative physical work environments and technology to create a workplace in a holistic manner that delivers meaningful results.
Often cultural barriers "lurk deep within organizational structures" that impact results, according to the survey team.
The researchers polled 1,500 corporate real estate executives at CoreNet Global Summit, held last spring. Of the respondents, 87 percent identified innovation as extremely or very important to their organizations. More than 40 percent of the respondents identified challenges in technology and risk-averse decision-making processes as needing improvement.
Other challenges or areas needing improvement included collaborative physical work environments, with 34.7 percent citing the need for change within their companies. About 32 percent of respondents felt that strengthening corporate mandates to promote uninhibited innovative environments among staff would have a positive effect.
Face-to-face collaboration was viewed as a critical success factor for achieving innovation, with 93.5 percent ranking "in-person interaction and human contact" as the most important contributor. Meanwhile, more than two-thirds of the respondents rated the quality of the physical work environment as an important related factor.
"These two findings provide another validation of how people still need to be physically connected to be effective at what they are working on. Virtual work will not ultimately trump the physical work setting," said John Santora, president and CEO of Cushman & Wakefield Corporate Occupier and Investor Services. "Companies that understand how to balance mobility, telework and other kinds of flexible work practices are often more successful in continuously creating new ideas, products and services."
Other significant contributors are technology, incentives to innovate, multiple generations working together and a corporate mandate to innovate.
"Innovation has to be considered one of the top-tier business drivers of most any enterprise, starting with its highly interdependent nature," explained Richard Kadzis, vice president of strategic communications for CoreNet Global. He also cited speed to market, capitalization, talent, competitive advantage and location strategy as key drivers. "A company has to be hitting on all these cylinders to be on the leading edge," he said.