Executives at The Chubb Group of Insurance Cos. were
looking for the next big thing—and they wanted to find it
within three months. With that kind of deadline, managers
knew they couldn’t take a silo approach. They needed a
way to tap into the minds of 10,000 employees in 120
offices around the world.
When the innovation program officially kicked off in
September 2008, the company implemented Imaginatik’s Idea
Central, a Web-based collaboration tool. Within a month,
3,700 employees had submitted 607 ideas—a 35 percent participation rate evenly spread across all geographic regions.
Chubb then used the software to flesh out the concepts
and determine the best ones to pursue.
After the top 24 were reviewed for viability, a cross-functional team of case managers worked with the people
THE CHUBB GROUP
OF INSURANCE COS.,
Challenge: Gather ideas for new
revenue streams from 10,000
employees in 120 offices
Solution: Idea Central, Imaginatik,
Boston, Massachusetts, USA
ROI: 607 ideas vetted, 24 pitched to
the executive board, two developed
who had actually come
up with the ideas to
create 15-minute pitch
In the end, two concepts made it to development—and paved
the way for future
with Imaginatik has
strengthened our innovation capability by giving us the means to collaborate more
efficiently as a company,” says Jon Bidwell, senior vice
president of innovation at Chubb.
DRAWING A CROWD
Dispersed project teams
have been tapping into all
sorts of technology to stay in
contact about schedules and
updates, but finding a way
to foster true collaboration
across offices and time zones
often proves elusive.
For sustainable design
and engineering company
Cundall, it came down to the
drawings. It needed a way for
its 500 employees in 21 locations around the globe to see and manipulate renderings and plans.
“To ensure that the outcome of any design matches the client’s
vision in terms of function, efficiency and visual impact, it is critical we draw on the design, experience and knowledge from all our
team members, wherever they are in the world,” says David
Dryden, managing partner at Cundall.
Challenge: Foster team collabo-
ration across 21 sites
Solution: Smart Board interactive
whiteboards and Bridgit conferenc-
ing software, Smart Technologies
ULC, Calgary, Alberta, Canada
ROI: Increased collaboration and
In the past, that meant a lot of trekking between offices, and
a flurry of e-mails and phone calls between team members.
Last February, Cundall tried a different tack, launching a
pilot project to test Smart Technologies’ interactive whiteboards
and Bridgit conferencing software in two of the company’s U.K.
The set-up let team members in the two offices work on the
same project simultaneously in real time—without travel or
multiple versions of a drawing floating around. Team members
could also share voice, video and data over the Internet as they
discussed project designs.
Following the pilot, Cundall installed the technology in
its five U.K. offices and plans to eventually connect its other
“Smart’s interactive technology is helping to facilitate cultural
change within our organization,” Mr. Dryden notes. “It’s allowing
our workforce to collaborate quickly and easily on projects,
alleviating the silo mentality that we know will act as a barrier to
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