Next month, on October 21, 2017, Amadeus will celebrate its 30th Anniversary. For the past three decades, innovation has been a defining hallmark of our success on the global travel technology stage. While innovation often grabs a large share of attention in business circles, the equally important process of ideation also merits praise. So, what’s the difference between the two, and why does it matter?
Innovation vs. ideation
Innovation is a buzzword that in today’s context means “doing new things.” Innovation itself doesn’t help companies launch new products or build revenue. As a defined process however, innovation delivers a structure and framework to facilitate work. Like agility and quality, innovation is an essential process for achieving business success.
Ideation is also a process. In “Ideation: The Birth and Death of Ideas,” authors Douglas Graham and Thomas Bachmann describe it as a creative process for generating, developing and communicating new ideas. Ideation tells us what to do, how to determine if anyone has thought of it before, and how to protect, develop, fund and market an idea.
Like the age-old chicken-and-egg dilemma, which comes first? In our view, the innovation process begins with ideation, which leads to innovation accomplished. Ideation therefore becomes the gateway to innovation.
Why ideation is important
Like anything, ideation has its pros and cons. On the down-side, the conversion rate from ideation to product can be difficult to define and manage. An over-abundance of good ideas, coupled with too few product conversions, can lead to discouragement and frustration. This conundrum can be explained by factors such as feasibility and time to market. For example, a very good idea might have poor conversion due to an overly ambitious roadmap, or a too-lengthy time to market.
On the flip side, an existing idea with one small tweak could become a great product innovation, thanks to high customer demand, commercial acceptance, perfect timing and other factors. Also good news: Ideation doesn’t require special profiles or people to come into being. Rather, ideas can come from anyone, anywhere, at any time. Pre-conceived notions such as, “Only geeks and techies can innovate,” or “To truly innovate, I must develop software,” are simply not true.
The future of Amadeus ideation
Today, Amadeus ideations, innovations and advances are recognized around the world by our customers, partners and industry players. Amadeus has – and will continue – to generate a wealth of ideas through the innovation process. To illustrate our success, consider open technology platforms, a great Amadeus ideation, along with 2,600 ideas currently on the table or under development.
In this 30th Anniversary year, Amadeus will continue to focus on new advances that make the world more connected, efficient and rewarding for billions of travelers. Our investment in R&D will fuel new innovations in massive data, revenue management, airport IT & optimization, AI and VR, mobile, cloud-based architecture, payments & fraud detection, analytics, digital advertising, choice modeling, social media – and more.
Thirty years from now, it will be exciting to see how Amadeus’ ideations and innovations continue to transform our industry and the future of travel.
What will be the most important travel technology innovation in the next five years?