BT calls for employees’ ideas

BT is upgrading a scheme that has
saved the firm nearly £100m over the past four years by harnessing its
employees’ ideas.

BT Ideas provides a
formal framework for encouraging staff to be creative and rewards them for any
ideas that it uses.

Suggestions policy and
strategy manager Arthur Wright said the project is being developed over the
next year to try to increase the proportion of ideas implemented from 10 to 15
per cent.

The scheme uses the
Internet and intranet to promote the initiative, but an incubator website is to
be introduced to allow people to get in touch with other staff for help on
developing their ideas.

Wright said,
"People are immensely creative and want to contribute to the business –
whether it’s with little changes that make the job more satisfying or big
changes than can have a dramatic effect."

Rewards can be
significant – the company paid out £400,000 to employees last year.

Wright said, "Ideas
don’t come for free. If we have a good idea that saves us money or generates
significant income, then we are delighted to reward the originator with 10 per
cent of the savings or additional income up to a maximum of £30,000."

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