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The Innovation Process
Activity 5.3 F

Codify your solution

This activity will help you codify the products, processes, routines and standards that form core components of your innovation.

3C Checklist

Ensuring the sustainability and potential scalability of your solution should be a significant consideration during the Pilot stage. One of the fundamental building blocks of sustainability and scale is codification.

Codification enables a solution to be replicated by different people and organisations, in different contexts, in a consistent manner. In order to do this, you will first need to determine what constitutes the ‘core’ of your innovation.

The core consists of those components that are required for the sustainable use of your solution by the end user. They are the components that you believe are irreplaceable for your solution to work or to be labelled as your innovation, and/or are unique to your solution (on their own or as a combination).

These core components can be products, processes, routines or standards etc. Once you have defined them, you will need to assess how well they are codified and whether they need further codification for future replicability. The 3C Checklist is a tool to help you do this.

To set up your innovation for sustainability and scale, it is vital to understand the degree to which each of the core components has already been codified or might need to be further codified. The Gray Dot Catalyst 3C Checklist, adapted from Bessant and Tidd’s identification of levels of codification (2018), will help you assess your current level of codification and where you need to be. This works through seven levels of codification:

  • Level 0: Inside one person’s head
  • Level 1: Inside several people’s heads
  • Level 2: Can be shown
  • Level 3: Can be shown and described verbally
  • Level 4: Is written down or drawn in a document
  • Level 5: Can be systematically replicated based of documentation
  • Level 6: Is partially automated
  • Level 7: Is fully automated

You may also find it useful to combine this exercise with a process mapping exercise (see Recognition) for innovations where you are trying to move between codification stages three and four.