Scaling operations and measuring business impact across business units
With a staggering number of innovation projects in a broad variety of departments, from pre-development and production to design, marketing and supporting functions like HR and legal, BSH Startup Kitchen addresses the challenge to identify and prioritize projects with highest startup partnering potential. After that, is all about as efficiently supporting operational execution for all these projects and eventually make sure that successful Proof-of-Concepts (PoCs) get implemented and bring the envisioned business impact.
This is where BSH Startup Kitchen started to work with GlassDollar to choose better innovations projects, find the best-fitting startup solutions and make sure the impact gets delivered.
Choosing the right innovation projects
Each week a number of startup solution requests reach BSH Startup Kitchen. BSH business teams approach the unit with their innovation challenges that can benefit from partnering with an external company. First, Lars and his team use the GlassDollar platform to collect all requests and get a holistic overview. Since not all of those projects will lead to a successful adoption of a startup solution, it is necessary to pre-select the most promising ones before even sourcing a solution. This is done by calculating a simple business case, albeit with high-level assumptions, which nonetheless allows to prioritize the projects. As projects move on from sourcing stage, via assessment and purchasing, to the PoC phase, the business case gets refined.
Since 2018, BSH has looked into over 180 innovation challenges and has sourced over 1,500 possible startup solutions. Amongst the promising challenges were the increase of productivity by voice-enabling production lines, improving customer engagement with AI-generated media and training data at scale for machine learning use cases.
Having the right partner is key to success
With the help of GlassDollar, BSH Startup Kitchen has run more than 60 PoCs overall, over 30 of those in 2021 alone. With truly global operations, the scope and activities of BSH Startup Kitchen are not limited to headquarter activities, but projects come from all areas – including Europe, North America, China and other emerging markets. This level of operational excellence was only possible with the use of the efficient GlassDollar software platform. Together with a defined process playbook, this allowed for an effective internalization of the team’s Venture Managers, which lays the foundation to scale the business impact further in the coming years. While it is ultimately not about the quantity, but the quality of PoCs, a high number of PoCs increases the chances of successful adoptions. Every startup collaboration carries some risk, but with a well-balanced portfolio of collaborations, the probability of a large long-term business impact increases significantly. With 40%, the adoption rate of the BSH Startup Kitchen is rather high for the manufacturing industry, but ultimately it comes down to the concrete cost savings and revenue increases generated by the implemented startup solutions.
GlassDollar has developed a business impact calculation methodology that allows a standardized yet accurate estimation of the impact of a startup collaboration across its several phases. The calculation framework is simple enough, so it is applicable quickly and without advanced analytic skills yet detailed enough to yield dependable results. With this framework, BSH Startup Kitchen systematically calculated the business impact of their adopted startup solutions, which resulted in tangible net cost savings of more than €15M. Naturally, the impact varies across project categories, with product innovations having a higher risk, but also a higher return on investment, when scaled successfully.
Onwards and upwards
The journey is far from over, of course. Beyond further international expansion, from running more collaborations in China, North America and the Emerging Markets, BSH Startup Kitchen works with GlassDollar to effectively manage operations, acquire best internal stakeholder and track the business impact for all of its startup partnerships. The team will continue to set standards in startup partnering in terms of success metrics to measure and steer by as well as the scale that can be achieved with this kind of collaboration.
"When we started working with GlassDollar, we wanted to scale our startup partnering activities to reach the next level of professionalization and measure the impact we bring to the organization with BSH Startup Kitchen. Not only did GlassDollar support us on our path to increase the number of PoCs by more than 2.5x, but we were also able to measure a tangible business impact of €15M and report this number to our management and other stakeholders. GlassDollar provides the scalable software platform that enables us to create transparency of our activities and focus on the most important actionable metrics."