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ITI Awards - what's the Innovation class all about?

Written by Catherine Park

Awards Chairman Catherine Park provides some insights into the Innovation class of the ITI Awards.

In the lead-up to our awards deadline, I thought it would be useful to focus on some of our individual award classes, to give a more detailed idea of what they cover and who should consider entering.

This time I’m going to look at Innovation – one of the classes that is open to both members and non-members.

This class potentially encompasses quite diverse achievements. An entry could relate to a technological innovation by a technology provider; or a technology innovation by an LSP, industry group or individual.

However, it may not necessarily relate to technology. It could be a new system or a completely new way of doing something.

There must have been a significant, positive impact from the innovation based on identifying a clear need and developing a solution. Achievements should have the potential for a wider impact within the sector, and/or be something that others could usefully learn from to achieve major change.

Our winners in 2017 (the first ever!) were Juliet Haydock, Denise Muir and Ilenia Morelli for the ITI Italian Network’s new private online community.

Over time there had been in a shift in the needs of the members of the network. By 2015, the majority were happy to stay in touch via a loosely organised online community, and there was less enthusiasm than previously for physical events.

It was decided that a new online community was needed – to provide an all-encompassing space that could be used as freely as possible to suit each member’s needs, regardless of their interests or the time they had at their disposal. Specific goals included creating a virtual space for interaction where geographically dispersed members could have a sense of belonging; emphasising online over face-to-face activities which could potentially exclude members; encouraging new members to join; organising high-profile activities such as competitions and slams; providing online training courses to count towards CPD.

New objectives necessitated a move away from the existing Yahoo Group – SocialGo was selected as the new platform, with a carefully planned transitional period.

Evidence of success has included: more members in total; a higher proportion of young members in the group, and also contributing actively; fewer inactive members; increased discussion and interaction on the platform; online CPD courses.

This entry told a very clear story in terms of the issue; developing the solution; the implementation process; and the outcome.

Want to find out more about this or our other awards? You can download the entry pack here.

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