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8/27/2013
10:28 PM
Shane O'Neill
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20 Great Ideas To Steal In 2013

IT innovators turn great ideas into action. Use these winning InformationWeek 500 projects to spark your creativity and advance your plans.
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Who says an established insurance company can't think like a startup?

Northwestern Mutual's Enterprise Venture Fund (EVF) program was created so leaders across the company -- not just in IT -- can evaluate and fund new technologies and implement them on a small scale before rolling them out big. Essentially, the EVF ensures that Northwest Mutual's technology investments either succeed or fail quickly and affordably, and that resources and needs are aligned.

Before the EVF, business units took on the financial burden and risk of a tech implementation. The EVF absorbs some of that cost and risk by letting the company take the technology for a test ride first, thereby avoiding costly mistakes.

The EVF brought a startup mode of thinking to what is a very traditional 156-year-old company. Some of the technologies the EVF has brought to bear include the Microsoft Business Intelligence suite, mobile device application development and unified communications technologies. To date, the EVF has produced 322 unique ideas and 93 projects from 127 idea submitters, with 500 employees engaged in pilot programs. The company says the value added by the EVF over five years totals $17.3 million.

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20 Innovative IT Ideas To Steal

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Shane M. O'Neill
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Shane M. O'Neill,
User Rank: Author
9/13/2013 | 7:09:27 PM
re: 20 Great Ideas To Steal In 2013
Impressed overall with how these companies didn't let corporate killers like inertia and bureaucracy prevent them turning ideas into action. I'm partial to the companies that went mobile in a big way by developing mobile apps (Dallas Cowboys, Salvation Army, Mitsubishi) or replacing paper products and old hardware with smartphones and tablets (Procter & Gamble, Dish).
rhagan04101
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rhagan04101,
User Rank: Apprentice
9/11/2013 | 4:04:22 PM
re: 20 Great Ideas To Steal In 2013
I'll certainly post my comment, but I'm not about to click through 22 dang slides to dig through this.

Click bait fail. You lose.
David F. Carr
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David F. Carr,
User Rank: Author
9/10/2013 | 6:51:20 PM
re: 20 Great Ideas To Steal In 2013
Congrats to Ketchum on their IdeaShop idea - sounds like a cool use of collaborative brainstorming.
Alex Kane Rudansky
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Alex Kane Rudansky,
User Rank: Author
9/10/2013 | 4:41:08 PM
re: 20 Great Ideas To Steal In 2013
BIDMC has consistently been a leader in health IT, and OpenNotes is no exception. OpenNotes keeps patients engaged in their healthcare and educated about their health, possibly resulting in better outcomes. CIO John Halamka is a true innovator there.
OtherJimDonahue
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OtherJimDonahue,
User Rank: Apprentice
9/10/2013 | 1:28:26 PM
re: 20 Great Ideas To Steal In 2013
Re: Arizona State:

"The creation of eAdvisor had a direct impact on the freshman retention
rate. Retention rates from 2008-2012 increased by 1.7% year over year.
However, retention rates in the year after eAdvisor's launch increased
by 6.8%."

That is seriously impressive. I'd be interested in knowing what other factors may be involved, but any university that improves retention that much that quickly deserves praise.
Laurianne
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Laurianne,
User Rank: Author
9/9/2013 | 5:41:58 PM
re: 20 Great Ideas To Steal In 2013
UPS will probably write the book on telematics analysis. But this company also gets the people part of the customer relationship right. I know a very senior IT person who was won over by UPS on a business level because she was impressed by them as a consumer: Her neighborhood driver leaves a dog biscuit on top of all packages left at her door. Talk about thinking like a customer. I am betting there is not a biscuit metric but I bet the biscuits go a long way.
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