Innovation is a necessity for companies to survive and grow, but another dimension consists of innovation that benefits society and the environment. For many companies, social innovation is a core value and an expectation from customers. Social innovation also captures the degree to which a company’s transformative activities are viewed as beneficial to society or, conversely, as a force that exacts a societal price. The Aii Social Innovation Index quantifies social innovation of companies from the perspective of their customers, which is more relevant than relying on external experts or perceptions held by people who do not have actual experience with them.
Why does social innovation matter? Social innovation helps companies differentiate their brands, build customer loyalty and ensure that their well-meaning efforts are recognized by customers. Companies that drive big changes in their industry should ensure they are viewed not just as business innovators but as drivers of positive social and environmental change since doing so smooths the way for their growth. It is also important for companies to validate their social innovativeness among their own customers since they are the ultimate stakeholders who have experience with the brands.