Innovation is key to both business growth as well as economic growth. It is therefore important that business growth strategy include innovation. Adrian Clarke, Technology Strategist at Microsoft has created a program to help our partners create and deliver new products to be more successful in the market. The program is about inspiring and working with partners to help them create a planned window for innovation. It is essentially a trade-off – we train developers on our latest software tools, they create proof of concepts for new product ideas or efficiencies into existing products. Visit the MSDN blog post to find out more about the Microsoft Innovation Program.

We recently ran this program with Pitney Bowes, who are very passionate about innovation. An amazing 300 developers took part, forming 81 teams that created 79 proof of concepts over 3.5 days on Azure, Phone, SQL 2012, Kinect, .NET and Dynamics. The Innovation Program delivered new product ideas and possible new ways of monetising existing products – out of the 79 proof of concepts, 2-3 potential new products are being considered by Pitney Bowes to add to their portfolio. Watch the video case study.

· If you’d like to find out more about the program then email Adrian Clarke.

· To find out more about the importance of innovation to the UK economy and some simple steps towards kick starting innovation in your business - visit the following blog post - Innovation as a Strategy for Growth.