In the report, the focus has been made on the background of the company along with the crisis that Oven-fresh Bakery faced due to having a lack of ability in doing innovation in product. An explanation has been made on various kinds of the innovation process along with its strategic approach. Furthermore, organisational vision and the importance of leadership have also been discussed that may help the company to make continuous innovation in its product making and presentation process.
In the era of globalisation, it is important to remain always competition among the global market. For this reason, the essential features of innovation and commercialisation are mandatory to follow in an accurate way. In this study, a report and a business case will have to be presented based on the case study provided by Oven-fresh Bakery. Being hired as an innovation consultant by Oven-fresh Bakery, a total evaluation will be made to the company so that the importance and development of innovation can be made or applied in an effective manner. Furthermore, accurate recommendations will be provided to the company so that it can get over all its challenges regarding product diversity.
Oven-fresh Bakery is known as one of the known bakery stores in the UK, which was established 5 years back. The company is known for making one type of white bread, which is giving birth to tremendous challenges. The founder of the company named Mr Wilbur is facing a crisis to present diversified products to health-conscious customers because of a lack of capability to innovate. This sort of situation is degrading down the business turnover and thus the company is facing pressure from retailers. Hence, as per the situation of Oven-fresh Bakery, some innovation and development in the product line need to be put to focus so that the founder of the company can get hold of the business in an effective way.
Based on the information provided in the case study about Oven-fresh Bakery, the company needs to follow both the important features of innovation and invention. As per the ideas of Aslam and Ali (2020), there is a huge difference in making innovation and doing invention if understood in an accurate way. On the one hand, innovation is introducing something innovative in terms of product making or servicing process. On the other hand, the invention is making an overall creation and designing something completely new like in the case of the product development process. According to the falling down of the business turnover and the pressure of the retailers, the Oven-fresh bakery needs to focus on both the innovation and invention process. In the case of innovation, the founder of the company needs to innovate its existing product that is the only one type of white bread so that an ample number of customers can be retained. Innovation can be made by presenting the white bread in various shapes, sizes, fillings and many such. However, inventions need to be made in the company like making various kinds of bread with different flavours so that the attention of the health-conscious customers can be grabbed. In order to gain a sustainable competitive advantage and to develop the company in an effective manner, continuous improvement in the invention and innovation process needs to be made in an effective manner by taking the help of experts (Referred to Appendix 1).
In order to maintain an innovative work culture in a business environment, it is important to have an accurate vision and leadership approach. As stated by Weerts et al. (2018), an organisation can have a great vision if the involvement and contribution of great leaders can be put to practical use. This sort of management system helps to promote sustainable teamwork so that further commercial success can be gained. An effective team and fruitful results from the works of a team can be received if the higher authority like the leaders can make them understand the vision of a firm (Matthews and Brueggemann, 2015). Followed by this, the work process and innovative work culture can be achieved in an appropriate way in Oven-fresh Bakery. According to the situation of the Oven-fresh Bakery, the leader of the organisation, who can be considered as the founder named Mr Wilbur, needs to focus on the innovation and invention process of the firm.
The process involves making the team or the employees understand the vision of the firm, which is to provide fresh bread to the customers. An innovative work culture can be maintained if the leaders of the firm can promote innovation in the product making process along with the serving system so that the retailers, as well as the health-conscious customers, can get satisfied. The founder of the company should motivate the team and must create a vision so that development in the future can be made. It will give the firm an opportunity to build an appropriate and innovative organisational culture so that it can further complement the vision and possible leadership approach of the mentioned firm. Commercial success is a kind of strategic approach that can only be gained if a firm has a static vision along with great leaders that can help to promote an effective organisational culture (Storey et al. 2016). Hence, Oven-fresh Bakery should pick up the right motivational initiative like a reward giving system, holding effective meetings and making communicating with the team members. It will help the founder of the firm to make the team members know about the vision of the firm that will further give rise to an innovative organisational culture.
Innovation is a vital component in all markets that helps to fasten the business process and gain a sustainable competitive advantage. In the case of Oven-fresh Bakery, the 4Ps of innovation can provide knowledge and support the process of management of innovation in the case of product, process, position and paradigm. It will help the organisation in making better connections with retailers along with the customers as per their individual needs and demands so that innovative changes can be created and delivered in an accurate way (Akgun et al. 2017). In context to this, the core features of a product in context to Oven-fresh Bakery, innovation needs to be made in the ingredients, shapes, colours of the new baked products along with the existing product that is the white bread. Besides this, the packaging and delivery process also needs to be improved so that the pressure from the retailers and the customers can be well-handled. The process in making the baked products needs to be developed in the firm like in the preparation of die and baking.
The founder needs to understand it is not about delivering the same line of the product but it is all about innovating something new so that the business could complement the basic criteria of the global market. The company needs to invent something new and sell these at an affordable price that could satisfy the health-conscious customers like baking bread with oats rather than applying gluten-based items. Besides this, as per the current position of the company in the bakery industry, the company needs to understand the basic needs and demands of the customers that they have from the organisation. In order to maintain its ethical and sustainable position in the market, it is also important to give priority to its retailers, employees and many such members in the firm, who are involved in both external and internal ways. In relation to the company, a paradigm is all about making innovative changes in terms of product-making, servicing and selling processes that will further help the founder to make something beyond making one type of white bread.
Besides the practical application of the essential feature of 4Ps, the company should follow the accurate features of Incremental innovation (Coccia, 2017). Hence, it will be appropriate to advise Oven-fresh Bakery to first make some innovations in its existing product like in the case of white bread. If profitability can be gained through this innovation then further invention can be done in the baking and product making process.
Figure 1: 4Ps of Innovation
(Source: Akgun et al. 2017)
There are various kinds of approaches to innovation that can give development to innovative ideas and make an improvement to the business as a whole. In context to this, the focus should be made on the core aspects of the Innovation Funnel. It is a kind of tool that helps companies to make innovation as it is a constant stream of ideas that brings development to the process of product making (Anzola-Román et al. 2019). Oven-fresh Bakery can make practical applications of the Innovation funnel so that development and improvement can be done to the existing product of the company such as to the one type of white bread. The founder of the organisation should maintain and make the employees follow up the essential steps of the innovation funnel that makes idealisation, giving proof of some new concept, enhancing the manufacturing process and making innovation to the distribution and sale process. It will help to satisfy the customers and will also aid to slow down the pressure coming from the retailers. On the other hand, Frugal Innovation is a kind of engineering process that helps to reduce the complexities and cost of the goods along with the production rate (Hossain, 2018).
It is all about delivering valuable products to the customers at a low cost that would further increase the rate of customers and will complement the growing trend (Najafi-Tavani et al. 2018). In this case, by making innovations to the existing product of the company, the founder should make a target to deliver high-quality products at an affordable price to the customers. Innovation should be made to the size and shapes of the white bread rather than the taste of it, which will help to manage the cost of the production. However, based on the profit gained from the innovation, the founder of the company can make inventions and introduce new kinds of baked products to the customers that may help the firm to move forwards and handle its turnover rates in an accurate manner. Besides this, among different kinds of innovation, some of the strategic approaches need to be taken into consideration (Välikangas and Gibbert, 2015). Followed by this, the company should undertake to mitigate its challenges by making an application of Incremental innovation to the existing product along with the implementation of the Architectural Innovation techniques to the new product (Han, 2017). Hence, besides the application of Frugal and innovation funnel approaches, the architectural and incremental innovation technique will complement and enhance the feature of the existing product along with giving ideas in making some new bakery-based product inventions.
Figure 2: Innovation Funnel Management Process
(Source: Toolshero.com, 2020)
As per the information provided followed by the case study of Oven-fresh Bakery, it can be suggested that the company and the founder do not need to satisfy its health-conscious customers along with the retailers by making effective innovations to the product. However, according to the demand of the bakery industry, later the company needed to invent something new so that continuous development and improvement in its turnover can be made in an effective manner. Innovation can be made to the product making or bakery process along with the delivery technique and presentation of it. The core features and essential aspects of various kinds of innovative approaches should need to be put to focus by the founder of the firm. It will give scope to make both innovation and invention to the product in an effective manner (De Hoop et al. 2016). The architectural innovation in making the new product and incremental innovation to the existing project can bring development to the mentioned organisation as a whole. Besides this, the company needs to go through the innovation funnel and the frugal innovation so that falling business turnover can be argued against and that will further give scope to the organisation to provide diversified products among the retailers and the customers.
It is important to generate new ideas for New Product Development (NPD) so that a huge number of customers can be attracted in an effective manner (Fernandes and González, 2020). New product development is not about making development in the features of the product but to generating ideas and focusing on the screening of it. However, the concept of developing and testing also falls under the category of new product development that also involves core aspects of marketing strategy development (TROTT, 2012). Oven-fresh Bakery can take Donut loaf as a new and innovative product with various kinds of fruits flavours that can help the organisation to compete in the market. The founder of the organisation can make some innovation at its existing product that is the one type of white bread based on its size, shape and colour along with ingredients. Besides this, new product development will provide new scope for the firm to receive high-profit rates along with attracting high number of customers. The implementation of healthy and gluten-free ingredients will help to grab the attention of health-conscious customers and will also affect the demand rate of the retailers. In this case, the company can showcase its innovative business model and apply for a venture capital funding system or can take Bank loans. However, SBA loans and focus can also be made to the Angel Investors so that investment in new product development can be made in an effective manner. Hence, there are various kinds of ways of funding, which the founder of the firm needs to select and decide as per the situation and risk of the organisation.
In order to measure, test and improve the performance of the Oven-fresh Bakery, it is important to apply accurate innovative techniques that can bring development to the firm as a whole. Those techniques are as follows:
It is all about matching the goals of the organisation to the availability and capability of the resources (Spyropoulou et al. 2018). As per the goals of the organisation, which is to provide high-quality bread to the customers as well as to the retailers, the company should have its strategic capabilities and contact shift resources like in the case of funding systems. The founder of the organisation needs to handle the essential assets of the firm along with the skills of the team members so that effective use of the available resources can be made accurately.
Risk assessment helps to gather information about the risk and challenges that may cause harm to the organisation as a whole (Zio, 2018). It is mainly applied to describe the overall process that is linked to hazards and potential risk factors. It can be viewed that for the introduction of new products and making development to it based on the core feature of innovation and invention, the chance is there of high risk. In this case, accurate planning, identification of hazards and many such elements need to be taken into consideration.
The value of the new product and its development of it can be analysed or focus is made to the core fester of frugal innovation. The frugal innovation adds value to the product in case of its delivery and making process. It will give a simplified approach to the new product that is all about selling the product at a lower cost but maintaining the quality of the product and enhancing the level of user experience. The value analysis of the new product needs to be done by developing its quality and providing it to the customers at a low cost.
A commercial funnel is a kind of marketing tool that helps organisations to find and qualify along with trading their merchandise to consumers. It helps to break down the journey of the customers from awareness to purchase stage. These kinds of tools have both a negative and positive impact on the development or introduction of new products. As opined by Curtis and Sweeney (2017), the commercial funnel is a kind of chronological process that helps to attract customers and thus convince them to buy the product. The important feature of the commercial funnel is mandatory to follow so that the new product development process can gain commercial success. The founder of the mentioned firm should attract customers and must convince them to buy the product based on advertisement and implementation of healthy ingredients in the doughnut loaf like fruits. The commercial funnel can be important for the company because it will help the founder to visualise the journey of the customers that will further help to analyse the buses will provide knowledge so that improvement can be made to the essential areas. In the ways of new product development, analysing and evaluating the customer’s journey is important so that further steps can be taken in an effective manner as it will give ideas about the profit rate. The founder of the company needs to have an understanding of the commercial funnel so that it can find its appropriate ways to trade its new product among the customers, which will further help to grab an idea about the customers’ journey from the awareness to the purchasing stage. Thus, it will help to make an increase in the selling rate of the organisation followed by the innovation made to the existing product along with the invention made in relation to the new product development.
Figure 3: Commercial Funnel
(Source: Mailmunch.com, 2019)
The intellectual property right of a new product that is the Donut loaf of Oven-fresh Bakery can be protected if the patent system can be taken into consideration. There are various kinds of intellectual property rights that include trade secrets, utility models, trade markets, patents, industrial designs, and geographical indications (Brem et al. 2017). Based on the situation of the company, it will be accurate to say that the patent system can turn out as an effective IP (Intellectual property), which will help the founder of the firm to protect the new product. It will provide an opportunity for the firm to encourage the inventory process of the new product development and exclude others from making, selling and using the invention for a minimum period of time. The patent system is considered to be one of the crucial parts of IP, where the rules and regulations motivate the invention process that seems to be useful for an organisation and the society, especially for its unique features (Cho et al. 2018). In the case of the new product of the company, the ingredients will be put in such a manner that will fulfil the needs and demands of health-conscious customers. Like this, it will motivate the invention process and will allow in making practical application of the patent. Through the patent system or process, the company will get its intellectual property rights that will further complement the process of gaining a competitive advantage.
Followed by the information given in the case study about Oven-fresh Bakery, it seems that the company is facing huge risk and colleges for not having diversification in product development. However, besides the lack of capability in making development in product development, the company is failing to fulfil the needs and demands of the retailers and the customers (Obal et al. 2020). Hence, it is resulting in a falling down of the business turnover along with an increased rate of market pressure. Based on the risks, challenges and innovation made to the study, it can be said that the founder of the company needs to make practical application of their innovation as per the applicable situation of the company. Furthermore, effective interaction processes and guiding the team members need to be out of consideration so that continuous innovation can be made to the organisation in an effective way. It can bring development in the process of new product introduction along with making innovation in the existing product. As per the nature of the innovation process, the Frugal innovation needs to be put to focus by the founder of the organisation along with the implementation of well-discussed innovative models like Architectural and Incremental. It will help to reduce the complexities regarding the new product development and will mitigate problems along with opening up gateways in presenting diversified products among the customers along with the retailers (Burton et al. 2017). More skilful and knowledgeable employees need to be hired so that direct interaction with the customers can be made. It will help to gather details of their needs and demands and thus based on that innovation and commercialization process can be continued in an effective manner. Thus, these recommendations will help the founder to carry out the business operation and move the business process forwards so that sustainable development and improvement can be made to the product making, selling and delivery process.
From the above discussion, it can be summed up by saying that innovation is an important component to various kinds of organisations that helps to gain a sustainable competitive advantage along with maintaining its brand image. In the case of Oven-fresh Bakery, all the challenges and risks can be mitigated if innovation can be made to the product through existing or making something new approach. Both the report and the business case will somehow act as recommendations to the company that will further help the founder of the firm to manage the innovation process and make some innovative development for the organisation. Furthermore, followed by the description made, it can be said that the risk and the ways of mitigating have been explored that will surely bring success to the organisation along with making development in its new product.
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