How Innovative is Your Organization?


The assessment is free and takes about 15 minutes. Your data is safe and private.

The Value of Design-Led Innovation

The Design Management Institute released a report that shows clear positive correlation between design driven organizations and shareholder value. It shows that design-centric organizations have outperformed the S&P by 211% over the past 10 years. Such companies go beyond using design as a service, seeing it instead as a catalyst for organizational change and something that should drive business strategy and innovation.

We believe that the sweet spot of innovation is at the confluence of technical feasibility, business viability, and human values of usability and desirability. While innovation can still happen when considering just one or two of these factors, truly transformative and sustainable innovation happens when we create products or services that customers want, will pay for, and that are technically sound.

How can organizations create cultures of design-led innovation? To answer this question, we developed a framework based on our experience working closely with over 500 clients around the world on strategic design and co-innovation initiatives. From this framework, we have created a assessment that you can take to find out your organization’s innovation readiness, some barriers to innovation you face, and strategies to overcome them.

The 3 Pillars of a Culture of Innovation


An organization needs the right mix of design skills and team members with a mindset for design-led innovation. In addition, executive support is essential to ensure that design is treated as a priority at the company.


Process refers to the way in which people collaborate, discover problems and co-create with end users to solve them. It is essential that this iterative and human-centered process is applied to development and business problems alike.


Physical space plays a key role in fostering innovation and creativity. Teams need dedicated spaces where they can collaborate, iterate and co-innovate with end users and customers on projects.

Innovation Readiness Stages


Efforts are grassroots and ad-hoc. Design is seen as a cost.


Design is important and some resources are provided, but success is not sustainable.


Competent design capabilities are used as part of day-to-day business activities.


Design-led innovation is practiced throughout the organization, and design drives business strategy.

Assess your Organizational Readiness

Take this free assessment to find out your organization’s stage of readiness. This assessment takes approximately 15 minutes to complete. Your data is safe & private.

You can request a detailed report of your innovation readiness here. This report will contain barriers to innovation in your organization and strategies to overcome them.

Barriers to Design-Led Innovation

People Barriers

  • Lack of design skill-set & mind-set
  • Little executive, mid-level management support
  • Siloed organizations
  • Design is a low priority
  • Resistance to change

Process Barriers

  • Design as an after thought
  • Ad hoc, inconsistent design process
  • Waterfall process
  • Not enough empathy
  • Problem solving before problem framing
  • Not enough iteration and experimentation

Place Barriers

  • Siloed workplaces
  • Distributed teams
  • Few collaborative environments
  • Insufficient infrastructure for remote collaboration
  • Limited project rooms

"SAP’s Innovation Readiness Assessment offers tremendous value to organizations interested in harnessing the power of design to drive systemic innovation at their companies."

- Jeneanne Rae, founder of Motiv Strategies and DMI's Design Value Index


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SAP's Design and Co-Innovation Center Supports customer and strategic design projects through Co-Innovation and Design Thinking. We are a team of about 50 designers, design strategists, software architects, and program managers working out of Palo Alto, Heidelberg and Berlin.

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