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Innovation culture bears fruit

2019-17-05 Innovation culture bears fruit for Bolton Clarke.jpg

The latest in a series of innovations grounded in the relationships between frontline team members and customers were recognised this week with Bolton Clarke taking out the Innovation of the Year – Product and Innovation of the Year – Social Engagement Program categories at Ageing Asia’s 7th APAC Eldercare Innovation Awards.

CEO Stephen Muggleton said while there had been no single formula for effective projects, a deliberate approach to valuing and prioritising innovation in practice and a focus on human centred design played an important role.

“Innovation that makes a difference starts and finishes with the customer,” he said.

“It’s listening to customers and the people working with them every day and supporting those ideas by bringing in people who have deep practice in innovation and service design.

 “We’ve worked hard over the past several years to develop strong design thinking across the group. This also includes growing our network of partnerships, collaborating with customers and experts from diverse disciplines to design services and solutions that meet people’s needs.

“The goal is to better support our customers with solutions that are supportive, respectful and above all individual.”

Bolton Clarke Senior Strategist Business Innovation Matiu Bush, who has spearheaded social engagement initiatives, presented to judges on the product and social engagement innovation categories.

The CaT Pin, a wearable device targeting loneliness developed by Bolton Clarke in partnership with RMIT researchers, won the Innovation of the Year – Product category.

Winner of the Telstra Designing for Ageing Well Challenge, the technology works by monitoring baseline conversations and word count throughout the day and then prompting social contact when levels drop too low.

One Good Street took out the Innovation of the Year – Social Engagement Program category. The project is an online social networking initiative that improves the lives of older people by strengthening their inclusion, partnering with care organisations to extend their reach within communities and creating connections with carers in the same neighbourhood through peer to peer support.

The emphasis is on an ecology of practical activities, which is unique when compared with many single initiatives working in isolation.

Creating a culture of innovation founded in customer co-design and a strong network of research partnerships and industry collaborations has been a focus for Bolton Clarke CEO Stephen Muggleton, who was also named a Global Ageing Influencer at the awards.