Co-creation as a driver for innovation

The traditional approach to innovation of working inside-out is phasing out fast as more people see the benefits of approaching it from an outside-in perspective. Organisations are more immersed in the minds of consumers when they adopt an outside-in approach as they move away from a company-centric perspective that views consumers as passive outsiders.

With an outside-in strategy, organisations understand the difference between what they make and what people need. In doing so, co-creation is a driver. Co-creation involves working with customers to share ideas and improve them together. It is informative and allows organisation yield deep insights because several active consumers are involved in the discussions, therefore, sparking bold and functional ideas.

Co-creation has helped brands earn customer trust and loyalty because users are involved in the process as products that meet the needs of customers are created. It also opens the door to new possibilities based on insights received during the process.

Co-creation is one key to maintaining a competitive edge. We have decided to focus on two brands – BMW and DHL – and how they have been able to co-create to drive innovation.

BMW drives innovation with Co-creation

In 2010, BMW created their co-creation lab inviting customers to offer their opinion on designs, submit their own ideas, and get involved in the vehicle-creation process. This gives customers more incentive to purchase the final vehicle since they are immersed in the design process from start to finish.

Several completed projects have come out of the lab. The first was in the development of telematics. As individuals came in to take out their main concerns during the product conceptualisation, 215 ideas were brought in of which two were implemented. During the co-creation process, BMW realised that users had an issue with the usability and safety of the trunk. This led to the next project – the Trunk Idea Contest. The Trunk Idea Contest saw the input of 756 ideas of which three were taken to the implementation stage.

DHL and Co-creation

DHL also used co-creation to improve its logistics. One of the outcomes was the Parcelcopter. Their effort in making use of users’ ideas and feedback increased user satisfaction to over 80% and on-time delivery to over 97% (according to Forbes).

We are a design team passionate about co-creation and how it helps organisations derive insights on what value is for their users. If you think there’s an opportunity to collaborate with us, contact us at