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Source: BCG

According to the latest report from Boston Consulting Group (BCG), Most Innovative Companies 2021: Overcoming the Innovation Readiness Gap, the COVID-19 pandemic has demonstrated the importance of innovation excellence in turbulent times

Boston Consulting Group (BCG) has released the latest report on Most Innovative Companies 2021: Overcoming the Innovation Readiness Gap with the top honours going to Apple, followed by Alphabet and Amazon making up the top three slots. Microsoft and Tesla are not too far behind while Pfizer is tenth overall.

Pharma companies performed strongly this year, joining technology and software companies that have dominated the rankings in recent years. The survey also identified strong regional variations in the innovation readiness of companies, with China and the US in the lead.

The report finds that only about 20% of companies globally have built high-performing innovation systems that can transform ambitious aspirations into real results. Moreover, some industries show big gaps in innovation readiness. Companies that are both committed (they back priorities with investment) and ready (they have the necessary platforms and practices in place) are up to four times as likely as those that aren’t to outperform their peers in terms of revenues from new products, services, and business models.

“Innovative companies have reaped the benefit of their earlier investment through this current crisis period, both for their shareholders and in terms of wider societal impact,” said Ramón Baeza, BCG managing director and senior partner and a coauthor of the report.

This year’s research has also revealed a worrisome readiness gap. On the positive side, 75% of companies identify innovation as a top-three priority (up 10% from 2020—the largest year-over-year increase in the 15 year history of the report), and 60% plan to increase their investment in innovation, with one-third of those planning to boost spending by more than 10%. But 80% of companies fall short of BCG’s innovation readiness benchmark across multiple dimensions of their innovation systems. The report suggests that attention to two areas can help bridge the gap: C-suite engagement and stronger bonds between product and sales teams.