7 Tools Connecting Innovation Teams with External Innovation

Corporate innovation teams evaluate and engage with multiple sources of external innovation. Keeping track of these sources, as well as the diligence process that follows, is frequently performed manually and siloed within an organization. New tools are making it easy for innovation teams to centralize external innovation tracking, and share interesting solutions within their organization.

The result is a sustainable external innovation pipeline – where promising innovations are efficiently evaluated and passed to the best internal resource for execution. Here are our favorite tools for managing the process – from ideation, to startup scouting, through to piloting:

1. Ideation: Betterific

Betterific hosts Innovation Challenges where teams can win cash prizes, and connect with brands and corporations to get innovative ideas heard. Open-innovation brainstorms connect ideas with corporate needs and foster new relationships. Challenges are currently live — join a brainstorm!

2. Industry Scanning: Resolute

Resolute harnesses powerful AI to uncover tech that is below the radar of most observers. Searching across millions of articles, Resolute delivers synthesized, comprehensive results that guide teams through the research phase and navigate key decisions.

3. Government-funded Innovation: SBIRSource

Offering services for both large and small companies, SBIR Source helps innovation teams identify government-funding technologies and innovations.

4. Startup Relationship Management: SwitchPitch

SwitchPitch provides the most comprehensive data set available on over 115,000 startups, easing the search process for corporate innovation teams. The platform was purpose-built for innovation teams to find startups earlier, and manage those relationships. Over 900 startup ecosystems are tracking, including accelerators, universities and co-working spaces globally. Full CRM functionality simplifies the process of startup engagement.

5. Risk Assessment: Early Metrics

In this increasingly complex world, Early Metrics assesses the growth potential of innovative ventures. Their ratings bring transparency to corporations, investors and entrepreneurs. Their proprietary rating methodology provides accurate evaluation of the potential of growth of any innovative venture. 

6. Innovation Project Management: GLIDR

GLIDR takes a new approach to product management software that puts feedback, product discovery, and validation at the center. GLIDR centers product management around discovery and validation, leading agile teams to more successful product launches. They primarily serve innovation teams, product management, and startups.

7. User Experience Testing: Alpha

Alpha empowers teams with the fastest way to learn about future customers with advanced targeting of a marketplace of 100 million B2B and B2C users worldwide. Alpha’s features extend to aid through the development process with tools to aid design and reporting process.

On the same topic – we hosted a webinar recently featuring several of the tools on the list. We cover startup partnerships done right – from identifying through piloting -watch here:


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