Mercury Marine® has been making world-class outboards and sterndrives for more than 80 years. Founded in 1939 in a small machine shop in Wisconsin, they've grown into the largest builder of marine propulsion systems in the world.
In order to continue its reputation of being an industry-leading innovator, the design and engineering departments were looking for new ways to tap into the wisdom of their team of over 500 to ideate around cutting-edge propulsion technologies to incorporate into their new product lines.
Brainstorming methods the organization commonly used such as in-person whiteboarding and spreadsheets had worked well in smaller group environments, but being able to tap into the entire engineering organization simultaneously in a highly collaborative way wasn’t possible using these traditional methods.
"One of the things we found most beneficial about Ideawake was the ability to know who was responsible for the submission of an idea, and which team members made meaningful contributions to the idea. This is especially helpful if an idea turns into an opportunity for future intellectual property. "
Mercury aimed to provide a voice to its engineering employees at all levels of the organization, regardless of their role or title. The company needed an easy-to-use solution with a simple onboarding process for employees, that also had the advanced capabilities needed to quickly surface and select ideas with high potential.
After researching multiple options, Mercury decided to utilize Ideawake’s idea management platform to crowdsource, collaborate around, and surface innovative ideas from its engineering and design teams.
The Ideawake team worked closely with Mercury to create a targeted challenge statement that served as a call-to-action to their design and engineering teams, as well as helped create a promotion plan to maximize engagement once the campaign went live.
"It has been great working with the Ideawake team, who has been really helpful in helping provide insights on the strategy behind how these internal crowdsourcing campaigns are successfully run."
The challenge targeted all 500+ employees in the engineering organization including team members across both the design and engineering disciplines.
The challenge set impressive benchmarks for user participation, with the collection of 183 ideas, 269 comments, and over 597 votes. This led to a high-quality shortlist of ideas, which were reviewed by an internal steering committee. 15% - 20% of submitted ideas are being integrated into Mercury’s future products. In addition, many ideas that were generated were characterized as opportunities for future intellectual property.