Innovation That Matters

Bank taps customers for co-developed ideas

Financial Services

The proverbial suggestion box was a fixture in all too many companies for far too long, attracting dust but rarely attention. Thanks to the crowdsourcing trend, however, consumers’ ideas today are more commonly producing tangible results. The latest spotting? Swedish Avanza Bank, which has developed a system that lets consumers suggest and vote on each other’s ideas for potential implementation. Avanza Bank’s Labs is a dedicated part of its site where customers can suggest ideas large and small for improving the bank. Each idea gets listed on the Labs page, where it is available for voting by others who visit. Those discussed most frequently and/or receiving the most votes are then taken into serious consideration by the bank for possible translation into a real solution. The bank also uses its Labs site to solicit customer suggestions on new products and ideas of its own, such as on a forthcoming Android application. While we’ve seen companies including big-name brands like Starbucks and Volkswagen turn to the crowds for help with some aspect or other of their businesses, it’s refreshing to see a bank do the same. Not, however, that we don’t have a little suggestion of our own for Avanza: It’s one thing to ask customers for ideas, and even better to use those ideas from time to time. What makes the partnership real, however, is when you reward them for their efforts. This is Generation C(ash) we’re talking about, after all! (Related: Crowdsourcing site actively manages the design processFor a reward, crowds name new productsCrowdsourcing product improvements.) Spotted by: Johan Lofmark



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