Innovation is vital to the growth of a company. For this reason, innovation is the most important factor that enables a company to grow. Topics we will cover in our blog post “What is innovation maturity? Why is it important?” will be. What is Innovation Maturity? Innovation maturity shows how effective a company’s innovation efforts are. Thus, it provides important information on how to extend its life in the market in which it is located. In other words, innovation maturity helps a company determine what it needs to do to improve its performance and drive higher innovation. Managers use innovation maturity models to identify talent within the company. These models measure innovation levels and provide a roadmap for opportunities. However, some differences should be known between innovation management and innovation maturity. Innovation management is about how a company manages innovation. Innovation maturity defines a company’s level of originality and the models that should be used to measure it. Why is Innovation Maturity Important? Measuring innovation allows companies to monitor their progress as they plan for the future. It helps fill the gaps between learning what a company needs and doing it. For this reason, the success of a company depends on aligning its business strategy with the innovation process. Innovation Maturity Levels Innovation maturity levels provide information on what level a business is currently at and what it needs to do to raise its maturity level. Innovation maturity has 4 levels; 1. Level At the first level, there is an innovation taking place. However, it is usually temporary and driven by the customer or employee feedback. Innovation at this level only happens when employees or departments encounter a business problem and need to solve it. In other words, innovation takes place according to urgent business needs or market pressure. Methods that can be applied within the company to pass to the second level; – Actively evaluating innovation opportunities – Creating opportunities to gather innovative ideas – Identifying leaders who can drive the innovation culture within the company and have innovation management skills 2. Level In the second level, ideas and suggestions are actively collected. However, innovation processes are not fully defined. Employees take responsibility for innovation and are knowledgeable about innovation. But in the second phase, there are no organization-wide standards and processes that apply to innovation. Methods that can be applied within the company to move to the third level; Implementing innovation processes Formalize innovation management to encourage collaboration and knowledge sharing within the company Creating an innovation team for innovation management 3. Level In the third level, the entire innovation process is actively managed according to a specific roadmap. All parts of innovation are implemented seamlessly to a certain extent. Innovation at this level is carried out within the framework of a plan focused on strategic goals. In addition, roles and responsibilities are assigned to the relevant persons. Methods that can be applied within the company to move to the fourth level; – Setting goals to realize innovation – Allocating a budget to carry out innovation processes – Optimizing innovation management, processes and infrastructure 4. Level At this level, the business roadmap is the driving force behind project management, strategic planning and innovation. All processes within the scope of innovation are implemented. With effective practices, high participation and performance, the innovation process continues in a beneficial way. How to Increase Innovation Maturity? 1. Know Your Current Level First of all, it is necessary to determine the innovation maturity level of the company. There is one factor to consider in order to properly assess the current stage. This factor is that a large number of employees from different departments participate in this process. Thus, companies gain a comprehensive view of the innovation process. 2. Determine Which Level You Want to Reach As a next step, the company must determine what stage it wants to reach. To reach this stage, it is necessary to set realistic and short-term goals. 3. Identify Your Shortcomings After determining the current maturity level of the business and what level to reach next, the improvement points that the company needs should be found. In other words, it is necessary to determine what the deficiencies are between the current level and the desired level. The information obtained from the evaluation to learn the current stage helps to identify all the shortcomings. For this reason, those assessments must be taken into account. 4. Create a Plan to Get Implemented Finally, it is necessary to plan the steps to be taken by working with the innovation managers and senior employees of the company. After the whole plan is ready, what needs to be done will be to implement and manage this plan.