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6 tips to better run idea challenges in Confluence

I just love idea challenges! Not only because they mean more time spent on innovative tasks (and less on the usual stuff😛), but also their competitive nature and the large array of benefits it can bring to the individual, the team, and of course, the company as a whole.

Obviously, everything that might look great in theory, needs to be properly implemented in reality. And in the case of idea challenges, they can easily grow to become a complete mess. And trust me I have been there. So, how can you run idea challenges… better?

Define the scope of your ideation challenge 

You can’t ensure a successful ideation challenge if you don't know why and where you are launching it. So the first step here is to answer both questions. 

Let’s start with why. There are a lot of specific events and goals that might lead teams and organizations to start an ideation challenge. Are you seeking solutions for a specific problem, exploring new product features, or simply encouraging creativity?

Defining the objectives you want to achieve is the first step to help you shape your ideation challenge, define the starting point, time frame and success criteria. And most importantly this can help you answer the second question: Where, in Confluence, will you launch the challenge?

When launching an ideation challenge, it is important to identify the space where your teams will collaborate and ideate. Do you have a dedicated space for ideation? Or do you prefer launching challenges within specific team spaces? It is completely up to you, but generally speaking, choosing a specific team space for ideation eliminates the hassle to include and exclude participants as the access permissions are already defined. 

With Ideation for Confluence, all ideas created within a challenge are all listed within the challenge index page. Think of it as a dashboard and a parent page where all ideas are listed. Here you have a host of views and filtering options to help you easily navigate your dashboard. 


Specify clear success criteria

What does a good idea look like in this challenge? This is your success and rating criteria upon which you are going to evaluate ideas. For example, if your challenge is aiming at improving things around the workplace, an idea needs to be popular and quite feasible. So here you are going to look for popularity and feasibility. In case you are launching a new product or feature, the rating criteria become a bit complex. Here, you will be rating ideas across phases and based on, for example, feasibility, disruptive potential, expected ROI, and more. 


Establish the ideation process and steps

What are the different steps ideas need to go through within the challenge? You already know the answer: it depends on the nature of the challenge and your objectives. Ideation for Confluence comes with three built-in statutes to help you get started: Evaluated, Proposed and Achieved. You can build on these statutes and add your own with the built-in ideation workflow. The latter helps you set up statutes and transitions ensuring a smooth ideation challenge.


Target a specific audience

The next step is to answer the third question: Who? Who is responsible for managing the ideation challenge and who can participate? 

Upon creating your challenge with Ideation for Confluence, you can specify managers and participants within the dialog box. Here you can identify specific users or groups of users. Of course, the designated managers and participants, depend on the nature of your ideation challenge. Is it a closed or board challenge? Do you want specific answers to specific questions? It entirely depends on your objectives.


Communicate throughout your ideation challenge

Communication is key to ensure the success of your ideation challenge. What we often find is that teams do extensive communication to generate hype and simply stop there. Don’t do that! Of course, building hype is important as it communicates the scope and objectives of the challenge but you need a more thorough communication that covers all phases: Prior, during and after your ideation challenge. For example, during the challenge, you might want to indicate which users are most active, how many participants, a glimpse of some leading ideas (in terms of votes), and more. This will create some sort of healthy competition and push individuals to be more involved. After the challenge, of course, you will announce the winning ideas, provide updates on their progress and so on and so forth.

Measure for success 

The eventual conclusion is to assess whether your ideation challenges have been a success. As stated earlier, there are a lot of metrics upon which you are going to evaluate ideas within a given challenge. In addition to that, you might want to consider more generic metrics and evaluate the very notion of challenges within your business. Are they working? Do people want to participate? Are the topics relevant? Here you will be looking more into engagement metrics such as the number of participants, number of ideas, likes, votes, etc. 

Another key area to assess is efficiency. Are the ideas generated within challenges coming to reality? How much time does it take for an idea to become a product or a feature? Here you will be assessing metrics such as Time-to-market, Idea-to-innovation ratio, etc.

Additionally, it is important to think of including some qualitative surveys where your teams might suggest any improvements. And for that you can use Ideation for Confluence and run a challenge there (the endless loop, of challenges 😀)


And there you have it. Ideation challenges are great (if you implement them correctly and make sure to continuously iterate for success). If you are looking to launch your next ideation challenge, you might want to give Ideation for Confluence a try. And lastly, how do you run your ideation challenges in Confluence, let us know in the comments below.

1 comment


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Alex G May 15, 2024

Nice article, thank you!

Like Fares Laroui_Vectors_ likes this
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