In a case study published at the European Case Clearing House, Poonam Oberoi, PhD student at Grenoble Ecole de Management, addresses the important role of open innovation intermediaries like eYeka. Hosting contests to solicit input and ideas from consumers is becoming a common practice for companies, and in her case study, Poonam describes the main steps of eYeka’s process and explains how it forms a bridge between its clients and the members of its community. What will students discuss in class? One of the major challenges faced by companies like eYeka: how to sustain the motivation level of their community members so as to ensure their continued participation in online contests?
eYeka already allows its community members free entry into contests, provides the intellectual property rights management, and offers multiple monetary rewards… What other incentive should it offer to maintain a continued relationship and a stronger bond with its community? Considering the demographics of the eYeka’s community members, Poonam offers some suggestions to further motivate community members to participate more regularly. She underlines that one « next step » in community building is to take interactions offline, like eYeka’s Meetup events, for instance.
Why a case study?
This case study is intended to facilitate in-class discussions for Bachelors and Masters students in the area of open innovation and innovation strategy. Today these students might be members of open innovation communities, and tomorrow they might be managing open innovation projects with companies such as eYeka. It is very important that they recognize the phenomenon of open innovation via contests, the main steps of the process and the difficulties that they might encounter.
Poonam Oberoi, holds a Licence de Lettres Modernes from the Université de Rennes II and a B.A. (hons.) in Business Administration from the Open University, Milton Keynes. After completing a Master’s of Science in Innovation and Technology Management at Grenoble Ecole de Management she joined the school’s PhD program in 2009. Poonam is interested in open innovation and her objective is to relate both the implementation decisions and the contextual factors of open innovation with the resulting level of performance. She started developing a number of ideas in this area and is looking to contribute to the study of these phenomena as part of her doctoral work as well as in her future career as a researcher. Poonam was a visiting PhD candidate at the London Business School for the academic year 2011-2012. Besides work, she is passionate about writing short stories and travelling.