The Mohammed Bin Rashid Centre for Government Innovation provides a wide variety of tools and techniques, enabling government entities to develop initiatives and come up with innovative solutions to enhance the efficiency of the government sector, and
improve the services provided by the government to individuals and entities.
These tools will help government entities achieve their innovation goals through stimulating innovative thinking. This in return, helps in finding quick and innovative solutions to the pressing challenges faced by these entities. These tools
are considered as key enablers that are necessary to improve government services.
TOOLS FOR EACH STAGE OF INNOVATION
Based on the innovation framework of the Mohammed Bin Rashid Centre for Government Innovation, the innovation process usually passes through the 7 fundamental stages: opportunities and challenges, generating ideas, developing and testing, making
the case, delivering and implementing, growing and scaling, and finally changing systems. It is worth mentioning that these aforementioned stages need special tools to complete the innovation activities that are associated to each one of them.
The future vision board is considered as a useful tool that contributes to achieving motivation and inspiration. It’s applied through setting the challenge or initiative by the workshop coordinators, and dividing the participants into working teams. The
challenge or initiative must be explained, and the expected goals, time period and the proposed budget clarified. Illustrated magazines, scissors, glue or sticky tape, and a large board are distributed to each participating team. This tool
helps participants cut and paste expressive images that highlight the obstacles they face in achieving their objectives.
This tool is used to boost the participants’ intellectual energies and prepare them for brainstorming exercises. For example, to write an English sentence, and ask the participants to find a specific letter (the letter ‘F’ for example) as well as identify
the number of times it is repeated. Based on previous experiences, most people cannot specify the right number. Thus, this tool determines the participants’ intelligence levels.
One + One = One
This tool is based on a person’s ability to think of an inanimate object that starts with the same letter as his/her name. For example: Mohammad (M) = mirror, Khaled (K) =kiwi, Salem (S) =soap, Badria (B) = brush, etc. The names of the inanimate objects
are subsequently written on a sticky note, and every participant looks for another participant in order to combine both of their words into an applicable project.
The Building Block/ The Hanger
This tool is used to come up with innovative ideas and present them to others, by asking participants to think of innovative ways to use a particular tool. For example, the audience is given five minutes to think of new ideas for the use of
building blocks or hanger. Participants are encouraged to provide some examples to stimulate random ideas, such as the use of bricks as paperweights or hangers as a means to hang advertisings in hallways or streets.
Challenges / Initiatives in Words
This tool is used to summarize the challenge or initiative in a word, sentence or single image in order to simplify the problem, at least mentally, and facilitate the process of creative thinking. A blank paper is distributed to all team members on which
they will be subsequently required to write down a word or sentence, or find a picture that summarizes the challenge or initiative. For example: The provision of better health services in the world.
This tool motivates and helps participants visualize the form of the initiative and how it will appear in newspapers once launched. In this respect, the workshop coordinator asks the audience to provide some magazines or newspapers containing a number
of advertisements. Each team is then given a newspaper or magazine, and five minutes to re-design and draft the advertisement, so as to tell the story of the initiative or challenge that has been addressed during that day. After that, each
group chooses one of its members to read and present the advertisement to the participants. This exercise helps in boosting the participants’ energy level, and increasing their enthusiasm.
Opportunities and Challenges
This tool helps detect similar patterns of presented ideas, and sometimes get rid of old ones, by sorting and assembling information on the basis of convergence in language and content. This tool can identify focal areas and determine the most
common patterns within a group. The Affinity Map is used to determine the main and subcategories, by arranging the presented ideas in groups based on converged thinking patterns. It can also propose changes in the thinking pattern, while enabling
and urging the working group to find innovative ideas through brainstorming.
•Customer Experience Journey Mapping
This tool helps customers document their experiences with the government services provided to them, and aims at identifying the stages thereof, starting from recognizing the existence of the service right up to the completion of service delivery. This
tool documents the customer’s needs and impressions in every step of the process.
This tool is based on brainstorming techniques and seeks to come up with 108 new ideas during a maximum period of half an hour. The number of ideas proposed is more important than their quality. In order to brainstorm and propose new ideas, this tool
is based on written methods instead of verbal ones. This is intended to encourage team members to participate and express their thoughts freely without exposure to any criticism or comment.
•Random Stimulus Thinking
This tool is considered as a practical way to come up with new ideas. At the beginning of an innovative, random stimulus thinking workshop, a challenge or question is set in order to search for new ideas or government services for a specific government
entity. After that, a word is selected randomly (by flipping through any book or magazine, and selecting any random word or image). The group is subsequently asked to associate this world with 10 relevant attributes. Thereafter, the group is asked
to come up with 10 different initiatives related to these 10 attributes.
Developing and Testing
This tool is based on putting forward innovative ideas through asking questions about current services or products with the aim of finding innovative ways to improve them. It also provides methods and means to innovate products and services, by stimulating
the mind to think about their potential improvement.
This is a well-known administrative tool to facilitate the process of innovative thinking. With the participants’ ideas displayed on a wall while working on a project or addressing a specific problem, this tool helps identifying the correlation between
different ideas, and determining the consistency extent between them.
Making the Case
•The seven Ps Framework
Given the fact that every meeting needs a plan to abide by, these steps help in the preparation of plans, by identifying key areas of focus. Things may not always go according to a set plan. However, by following these seven steps, it would be possible
to reach the desired goal. The duration of the meeting for this tool should be between 20 minutes and two hours, depending on the nature of the topics. These seven steps are summed up as follows: • Purpose: Identify the purpose of
the meeting. • Participants: Select participants that need to attend. • Product: Identify the desired outcomes of the meeting, (including any new service or product). • Process: Collaborate to develop the meeting’s agenda. • Prepare:
Carry out research or studies prior to the meeting. • Pitfalls: Address any risks that may arise before the meeting. • Practical concerns: Carry out any necessary logistics before the meeting (Technical equipment and meals).
Making the Case
•The twelve steps
Delivering and Implementing
•Project Implementation Plan
This tool is considered as a guiding document for the development of plans so as to implement ideas and plans for any relevant projects. This guide can help determine the purpose and objectives of a project. It starts with the identification of the project,
objectives, and scope. In the second stage, studies are conducted on the risks and costs associated with the project in accordance with the scope that was agreed upon. In the third stage, a working team is formed, members are appointed and tasks
and responsibilities are distributed. Finally, following up on and monitoring the progress of the project will ensure the successful implementation of the plans.
Delivering and Implementing
This tool provides a systematic process of practical methods and techniques to analyse and solve problems, by adopting a design-based way of thinking. Design thinking is, therefore, used as a tool to create new ideas, aimed at proposing initiatives or
addressing specific challenges faced by the government entity, thus contributing to enhancing a work environment that supports innovation. Design thinking features the following four main stages: to identify restraints and possibilities within
the concerned entity, through conducting interviews with staff; to introduce new ideas; to convert proposed ideas into prototypes that can be tested and developed; and finally, to prepare a deliberate action plan. This tool helps consolidating
the innovative design approach in the provision of services and thoughtful planning so as to face challenges and meet requirements.
Growing and Scaling
This tool serves as a panel discussion, aimed at linking the entity’s performance with relevant stakeholders’ priorities so as to ensure convergence in activities, objectives, resources and capabilities. The duration of this exercise varies between 10
minutes and two hours depending on the number of participants and the areas of strategic focus. Participants are gathered in a large room and provided with panels, pens, watercolour pencils and sticky notes, while the coordinators use the happy
line form as a reference document, when necessary. The graph of your happiness line shows the performance level of the entity on the one hand and the priorities of relevant stakeholders on the other hand, thus contributing to the reorganization
of priorities in order to achieve maximum benefits.
Growing and Scaling
It is a package of technological tools used to support the coordination activities between working groups located in different geographical areas. There are two types of coordination, of the two the multimodal coordination, which is based on the use tools
such as images, documents, and virtual coordination, which is aimed at reinforcing active participation through interactive activities, and exercises that are prepared in advance. This tool is used in conjunction with other advanced methodologies
of coordination, and is adjusted according to the requirements of the session.
Challenges and motivational awards play an important role in achieving social and professional benefits. This drives most companies nowadays to further invest in innovative activities based on competitions and challenges. Challenge platforms contribute
to stimulating the innovation process through mobilizing intellectual and financial resources, and attracting the community members’ attention towards a particular problem or challenge. Challenge-related awards may include appreciation or motivational
awards to encourage participants to come up with creative solutions to the challenges faced or services provided.
•Idea Management System
This relatively new tool is designed to organize the process of monitoring and collecting ideas from within an entity or community to ensure the continued availability, implementation, and development of good ideas. Given the fact that companies rely
heavily on innovative strategies to expand in the market, the proper management of new ideas is considered a critical process. The Idea Management tools help encourage employees to participate in the innovation process and share their views with
the senior management.