What is innovation strategy?
Innovation strategy is the practice of developing a roadmap for innovating your products and services to increase market share and profits.
Here’s a quick overview of the skills you should look for in innovation strategy professionals:
- Innovation strategy
- Business development
- Market research
Why do you want to hire innovation strategists?
The trick to finding top innovation strategists is to identify your needs. Is your goal to analyze competitors to identify key differentiators you can leverage to grow your own market share? Do you need help with market segmentation to identify underserved markets you can target with your next product release? The cost of your project will depend largely on your scope of work and the specific skills needed to bring your project to life.
HOW TO HIRE INNOVATION STRATEGISTS
Innovation strategists can audit your products and services along with those of competitors to identify unmet customer needs, feature requests, and other areas for improvement. Fulfilling unmet customer needs is a great way to expand your market share and increase profits.
So how do you hire innovation strategists? What follows are some tips for finding top innovation strategists on Upwork.
How to shortlist innovation strategy professionals
As you’re browsing available innovation strategy consultants, it can be helpful to develop a shortlist of the professionals you may want to interview. You can screen profiles on criteria such as:
- Product-market fit. You want an innovation strategist who understands your product-market fit so they can see into the adjacent possible and help your team innovate.
- Project experience. Screen candidate profiles for specific skills and experience (e.g., developing an innovation strategy for a consumer electronics manufacturer).
- Feedback. Check reviews from past clients for glowing testimonials or red flags that can tell you what it’s like to work with a particular innovation strategist.
How to write an effective innovation strategy job post
With a clear picture of your ideal innovation strategist in mind, it’s time to write that job post. Although you don’t need a full job description as you would when hiring an employee, aim to provide enough detail for a contractor to know if they’re the right fit for the project.
An effective innovation strategy job post should include:
- Scope of work: From auditing products and services to brainstorming new features, list all the deliverables you’ll need.
- Project length: Your job post should indicate whether this is a smaller or larger project.
- Background: If you prefer experience with certain industries, technologies, or marketing tools, mention this here.
- Budget: Set a budget and note your preference for hourly rates vs. fixed-price contracts.
Ready to develop your own innovation strategy? Log in and post your innovation strategy job on Upwork today.
FAQS FOR HIRING INNOVATION STRATEGISTS
How much does it cost to hire an innovation strategist?
Rates can vary due to many factors, including expertise and experience, location, and market conditions.
- An experienced innovation strategist may command higher fees but also work faster, have more-specialized areas of expertise, and deliver higher-quality work.
- A contractor who is still in the process of building a client base may price their innovation strategy services more competitively.
Which one is right for you will depend on the specifics of your project.
How long should you contract an innovation strategist to complete your project?
As difficult as it is to estimate how long it takes to develop an innovation strategy, budgeting time is very important to keeping your project on track.
Be prepared to budget more time for more-demanding innovation strategy projects. For example, creating an innovation strategy for incremental improvements to a software-as-a-service (SaaS) product will take less time than working with R&D to create a market-disrupting technological advancement in a consumer electronics product.
What are the steps involved to hire innovation strategists?
Here’s how to hire innovation strategy consultants in four simple steps:
- Identify your project needs, whether it’s market segmentation or feature ideation.
- Define the scope of work and write a detailed job post. Be specific about deliverables (e.g., audit your supply chain logistics to identify areas for improvement).
- Review proposals and shortlist potential innovation strategists for unique skills needed to bring your project to life (e.g., UX design expertise to assist with feature ideation for iOS apps).
- Interview innovation strategy talent to gauge whether they’re the right fit for your project.