Suggestion box 2.0: Startup aims to help turn smart ideas into reality

The London-based startup Wazoku that wants to rethink the suggestion box is aiming at the public sector.
Written by Steve Ranger, Global News Director

Idea management start-up Wazoku is taking aiming at the UK public sector with a G-Cloud certified version of its software, which aims to shepherd ideas from lightbulb moment through to reality.

Wazoku's cloud-based Idea Spotlight tool seeks to replace the office suggestion box by helping companies collect, evaluate and prioritise ideas from staff or customers.

Since its launch in September 2011, Wazoku has worked with customers including Faber & Faber, Diageo and ICAP. The company said its Government Spotlight software has received G-Cloud accreditation and the Department for Education and the Independent Commission on Mental Health and Policing have both used it as part of public consultations.

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Simon Hill, Wazoku chief executive of the London-based company, said one problem with how organisations try to encourage new ideas is that they don't always get support from senior management early enough, and so fail. "People had been using a suggestion box in the offline world or email but that's just about idea capture — that's the easy bit — and not how to move those ideas through and get them in front of the right people," he told ZDNet.

"There's no transparency — no way of knowing if other ideas have been submitted. There's no opportunity to voice an opinion or support ideas. You have none of this collaborative weight and none of this process."

Organisations can decide how ideas progress using the tool — stipulating any idea that gets more than 20 votes should be sent directly to an executive, for example, or that a marketing idea should always make its way to the CMO if it gets a certain amount of support.

Spotlight integrates with project management tools such as Huddle to take the idea further or a business case is needed. Hill said: "We've just got our G-Cloud approval so we are now focusing on UK public sector which should be a really hot area for us. "We are the only UK based company that does this stuff. The code is all written here and the servers are here."

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