Posted on 28 Mar 2017

Today’s business environment is complex, dynamic and unpredictable. ‘Innovate and adapt’ is the new corporate mantra, and rightly so. Organisations that fail to do so, don’t survive. The democratisation of innovation – making innovation everyone’s job – is the goal and strategies to achieve this increasingly focus on people practices.

We put a lens on organisational innovation to explore how companies are executing on this priority through human capital. Our initial investigation highlighted three key drivers for organisational innovation that HR is well-positioned to influence: (1) culture, (2) workforce agility and (3) technology.


Fostering a culture of innovation is a key strategy to drive corporate innovation, particularly when the goal is to democratise innovative behaviours and practices. Levers include leadership, diversity and inclusion, performance management, and learning.

Workforce Agility

Static and hierarchical organisational structures inhibit capability and speed to innovate. On the flipside, increased workforce agility enables organisations to flex in response to change and deploy rapid innovation. Levers include organisational design and talent mobility.


Technology both delivers and enables organisational innovation; it facilitates collaboration, instant information and speed, and has the potential to reshape the employee experience. Levers include established consumer technologies and emerging technologies.


These were the three areas of focus in our research. We found that there is enormous potential for HR to foster organisational innovation and hardwire innovative behaviours. This can be achieved by bringing forth core HR capabilities.

There is enormous potential for HR to foster organisational innovation and hardwire innovative behaviours.

This eBook brings together the results of our research to provide a market perspective on the current state of organisational innovation and HR’s contribution to this. It is based on survey data from 322 business and HR professionals, interviews with 33 HR executives, and commentary and research from industry thought leaders.


The eBook includes a framework to focus your HR strategy and practical steps to ramp up organisational innovation.