According to a Forbes article, 92% of consumers believe that innovation is a key factor in society’s progress. Any good product can tap into the innovation mindset by sourcing and testing new ideas.
One of the best ways to develop innovative products is to collect new ideas from team members and users—and idea management software can help you collate these ideas as you plan your next big product.
This article explores the best idea management software and how it can help you conceptualize and build your company’s new products.
Here’s the list of the best idea management systems that I’ll cover in this article.
What do I look for when I select the best idea management app? Here’s a summary of my evaluation criteria:
User Interface (UI): Developing new products requires time, so I look for idea management software with a clean interface so I don’t waste time looking for the features I need.
Usability: Great ideas come from a wide range of sources, so I look for software that anyone can easily use to share their ideas.
Integrations: Companies use a wide range of software and tools, so I am looking for idea management software that will work well with other tools.
Value for $: Companies subscribe to many other software products, so I look for an idea management software with great features but reasonable pricing.
Idea Management Solution: Key Features
Idea submission: Allows the submission of ideas from internal and external sources.
Gamification: Makes idea submission more competitive through rewards and recognitions.
Whiteboard: Digital whiteboard allows team members to brainstorm, share, and assess ideas in real-time.
Communication tools: Allows members to collaborate on ideas using in-app chat, comments, and mentions.
Workspaces: Enables product development teams to share ideas, documents, and files in a secure environment.
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Overviews Of The 10 Best Idea Management Software Solutions
Here’s a brief description of each idea management platform to showcase each tool’s best use case, some noteworthy features, and screenshots to give a snapshot of the user interface.
1. Google Workspace – Idea management software with video conferencing with collaborators
Google Workspace is a collection of productivity and collaboration tools that allows team members to contribute ideas in text documents, spreadsheets, presentations, or IRL by video or chat. Google Workspace is cloud-based to give team members access to documents and other crucial files wherever they are. This makes it a great option for remote or hybrid teams. Because it’s free, you might want to combine it with other (paid) software for a more complete approach to idea management.
Video conferences have become the norm as more companies turn to telecommuting and Google Workspace is the best idea management software if you want one to help you conduct video conferences with team members. What’s great about Google Workspace is that it allows up to 100 participants to join a video meeting to gather as many team members as you want to collect all the ideas you need. Google Workspace allows you to record meetings and store them in Google Drive so you can replay meetings and note ideas you might have missed.
2. Idea Drop – Idea management software with a gamification feature
Idea Drop is an idea management software that helps you discover, evaluate, and execute innovative ideas for your product. It has a pattern recognition feature to detect similar ideas and encourage employees with the same ideas to collaborate. Idea Drop has a cloaking feature to make idea submission confidential by protecting the identities of those who submitted them.
Competitions motivate employees to bring in new ideas, and Idea Drop has a gamification feature to help you take advantage of this. Idea Drop allows you to build in rewards and challenges to encourage participants in bringing new ideas to the table. The software allows you to assign real-time innovation/idea scores, assign deadlines to team challenges, and track progress via a kanban-style workflow board.
Idea Drop provides pricing details and a free demo upon request.
3. Ideawake – Idea management software with customizable submission forms
Ideawake is an innovation management software to collect, evaluate, and implement ideas for new products. You can use it to allow team members to vote on ideas to gain the group’s consensus. This innovation management software has custom scorecards you can use to ensure uniformity in judging new ideas. Ideawake also allows you to assign ideas for the review of subject matter experts to ensure that they get judged by qualified reviewers.
Ideawake is the best idea management software because it has customizable submission forms if you want to make idea submission more organized. With the help of Ideawake’s submission forms, you can ensure that submissions contain the same information to make assessing ideas more consistent. The fields in Ideawake’s submission forms can help you filter submissions to make categorizing them easier.
Ideawake integrates with other idea management tools like Microsoft 365, Slack, Trello, Dropbox, and Zoom.
Ideawake provides pricing information and a free demo upon customer request.
4. Brightidea – Idea management software with a native whiteboard feature
Brightidea is an idea management software to collect, screen, evaluate, and develop ideas in product development. It has an idea box feature where employees can submit new ideas anytime. Brightidea has a labs feature for facilitating design research for new products without installing a separate PLM software. This idea management tool also has an external innovation feature to help you explore ideas from outside sources like universities and startups.
Brainstorming is one of the best ways to gather ideas for new products and Brightidea has a native whiteboard feature to help you make brainstorming more productive. It has stickies you can use to take note of suggestions for new products. Brightidea’s whiteboard has markers and pens that team members can use to illustrate ideas to make them easier to understand. It also allows participants to upload images to show other participants pictures of prototypes or features they want to add.
Brightidea offers customized pricing and a free demo upon request.
5. monday – Idea management software with a mind mapping app
monday is a project management platform with informative dashboards to let you assess the status of projects and keep an eye on your deliverables. It has a workflow automation feature that lets you automate simple and repetitive tasks to help you save time. monday.com has a product road map feature to help you visually plan and execute new products.
monday is the best idea management software because it has a mind mapping app if you want to connect different ideas to create an innovative product. Mind mapping helps you create a central product idea and collect ideas on how to improve the said product. monday’s mind-mapping templates can also help you connect different ideas and visualize how they can complement each other. It also gives you an overview of the product, its features, and how customers can benefit from it.
monday integrates with other productivity tools, including Dropbox, Google Calendar, and OneDrive.
monday has a free forever plan with limited features for up to two users, while the pricing for the paid plans starts at $8/seat/month. They also offer a free trial of the paid plans for 14 days.
6. Mural – Idea management software with a digital whiteboard & collaboration features
Mural is an innovation management software with a digital whiteboard and plenty of collaboration tools. It has a private mode to ensure the confidentiality of new product development. Mural also has a design research and analysis feature to gather feedback on prototypes of new products and plan changes to address feedback.
With Mural, product managers can choose from a wide range of brainstorming templates to help them gather ideas. Mural has virtual reactions and animations to help celebrate good ideas and encourage other employee ideas. It also has a meeting notes feature to document ideas and create detailed action plans to push promising ideas to the next step in the product development process.
Mural integrates with other product development tools like Microsoft Teams, Webex, Asana, and Zoom. You can connect Mural to a paid Zapier account to get access to other premium apps.
Mural has a free forever plan with limited features for an unlimited number of users, while the pricing for the paid plans starts at $9/user/month.
7. Coda – Idea management software for triaging ideas
Coda is a cloud-based document editor to help team members collaborate on brainstorming and product development. You can use it to facilitate meetings, create an agenda, and take meeting notes. It has a workflow automation feature to automate simple tasks and give you more time to attend to critical projects. Coda has a document sharing feature to ensure that team members have access to information needed in planning new products.
Coda has an idea triage feature to help you evaluate ideas to isolate that one great idea for a new product. Coda lets you categorize ideas to assign them to reviewers for further evaluations. It also has graphs to help product managers visually assess the status of ideas and understand the percentage of useful ideas submitted. Coda has an idea submission template, so you know the date of submission of ideas and the reviewer’s name to create follow-ups on ideas that lack status updates.
You can connect Coda to a paid Zapier account to give you access to premium apps that can help you develop new products.
Coda has a free plan with limited features, while the pricing for paid plans starts at $12/month/user.
8. Canny – Idea management software with a feature request system
Canny is an idea management software to help you collect, manage, and evaluate product feedback. It has a product roadmap feature with an idea ranking functionality to score projects and feature requests and help you prioritize projects. You can use Canny to monitor the status of projects to help you focus on product development stages experiencing bottlenecks.
Canny is the best idea management software for a feature request system. This request system provides you with a centralized location for feature requests from customers, stakeholders, and employees. It also gives you a means of reaching out to customers who made similar requests for further discussions. You can use Canny to check the profiles of request submitters to understand the target demographic of a new product.
Canny integrates with other product development and project management tools, including HubSpot, Salesforce, G Suite, Jira, and Zendesk.
Canny has a free forever plan with limited features, while the pricing of its paid plans starts at $400/month/up to 5 administrators and an unlimited number of contributors.
9. Craft.io – Idea management software with a strategic roadmap feature
Craft.io is a product management platform for managing the entire life cycle of new product development. It acts as a collaborative space where product design and development teams can communicate and share files, product updates, and other critical information. This product and project management software has a prioritization feature to rank new ideas and then start executing them based on urgency. Craft.io has a capacity planning feature to ensure that you have enough human resources to deliver new products on time.
Craft.io has a strategy roadmap feature to help you visually monitor product development and ensure that the features of your new product utilize ideas submitted by team members. You can also use this road mapping feature to visualize how your new product will affect objectives and KPIs. Craft.io’s strategy roadmap provides collaborators with a private space to communicate to follow up on their ideas and suggested features.
Craft.io integrates with other collaboration and idea management tools, including GitLab, Dropbox, Jira, and Pivotal Tracker. You can connect Craft.io to a paid Zapier account to access other product development tools.
Craft.io pricing starts at $49/month/user, and they offer a 14-day free trial.
10. Planbox – Idea management software with an idea portal + campaign management
Planbox is an idea management system for identifying insights, trends, and emerging technologies you can use in developing new products. It has a corporate venturing feature to help you target the right partnerships and investment opportunities. Planbox has a continuous improvement platform to help you comment and vote on ideas.
An innovative idea can come from anywhere, and Planbox is the best idea management software if you want to gather good ideas from outside sources like startups, academe, government, and the online community. You can use Planbox to host co-creation activities like hackathons, shark tanks, and idea challenges to quickly discover new ideas for products. It has embedded and customizable evaluation methods to help you consistently assess new ideas.
Planbox integrates with other idea management tools, including Microsoft Teams, G Suite, Sharepoint, and Slack. You can also connect PLanbox to a paid Zapier account if you want access to other premium apps.
Planbox provides pricing information and a free demo upon request.
Need expert help selecting the right Ideas Management Software?
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Here’s a few more that didn’t make the top list.
Lucidspark – Virtual whiteboard for sharing and capturing ideas with digital sticky notes, comments, and user mentions
Wrike – Project management software for cross-departmental collaboration
ClickUp – Platform for managing people, tasks, and projects.
Asana – Work management software for organizing teams and managing projects.
Smartsheet – SaaS for work management and collaboration.
Ideanote – Innovation software for gathering, organizing, prioritizing, and developing ideas.
IdeaScale – Innovation management solution for linking organizations to outside sources of ideas.
Nectir – Idea management and innovation software for crowdsourcing great ideas.
Mindhive – Ideation platform for improving products.
Confluence – Work management platform for sharing and storing ideas.
Ideawake – Idea management platform for capturing and organizing collective intelligence.
Miro – Online collaborative whiteboard for ideation and brainstorming.
Viima – Innovation management software for collecting and developing ideas.
What do you think about this list?
All successful products can trace themselves from great ideas, and idea management software is an excellent tool to help you collect, assess, and develop ideas when coming up with a new product. You can also use idea management software to improve existing products by adding new features that customers find useful.
With the help of the best idea management software, you can evaluate ideas to translate them into products that generate revenues while increasing customer satisfaction.
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