This year, Unibail-Rodamco-Westfield decided to highlight innovation-related projects led by teams from all regions with the first edition of the Innovation Awards. The 2020 Innovation Awards aimed at rewarding last year’s top innovation projects. This groupwide initiative involved participants from all regions, ie. the U.S., the U.K., Austria, Czech Republic, France, Germany, Poland, Slovakia, Spain and Sweden.
Putting the spotlight on innovation in the Group’s regions
Through this initiative, the Group intends to foster an innovation culture internally by encouraging such projects and to bring support to all teams in the different regions of the Group. Thus Unibail-Rodamco-Westfield intends to reiterate the Innovation Awards every year, in an effort to involve all employees in this way.
Among 32 projects submitted eligible, 4 projects were rewarded in total:
- Three “Jury’s Choice” winners were rewarded: an internal jury composed of key senior leaders gathered to select one winner for each of the 3 categories corresponding to the three pillars of the Group’s innovation strategy: “Desire for consumers”, “Impact on tenants” and “Agility of operations”, based on four criteria (sustainability, value creation, scalability and originality),
- All our employees globally were invited to select the winner of the 4th award for “The Employees’ Choice”.
How the projects rewarded reinvent being together
The internal jury gathered to select one winner for each of these 3 abovementioned categories
- The “Desire for our customers” Award went to the project “Christmas Dinner”, led by a team based in Czech Republic. Employees based in Prague volunteered to organize a Christmas dinner at Westfield Chodov for people who would have spent Christmas alone: this project gathered 80 people, guests enjoyed a nice Christmas time together and were also offered gifts donated by tenants. This project shows an innovative way of reinventing how people come together and how community bonds can be strengthened through solidarity actions.
- The “Impact on our tenants” Award was given to “Digital Client Handover”, led by a U.K. team. It consisted in the designing and construction of a Building Information Modeling (BIM) model to manage over 24,000 assets within a structured database. This tech-led project is a great illustration of how online can bring additional value to offline click and brick.
- The “Agility of our operations” Award went to “Groundwater Reuse Initiative”, a project led by a U.S. team. The goal of the project was to offset the asset’s water consumption by redirecting the groundwater discharge rate. Thus, by redirecting it reduces the centre’s overall water consumption and associated costs. This initiative show that innovation can also mean being innovative in the way we think of solutions to answer a problem.
Along with these three prizes, the Employees’ Choice went to the “Gran Premio Retail”, which is the Spanish implementation of the Grand Prix Commerce. The first edition of the contest in Spain was a success with numerous participants, including a final jury consisting of dignitary’s such as the CEO of Ecoalf and the Director of Commerce of Cataluña, who awarded the first prize to Fittest Freakest, second prize to Wai Wai and third prize to Button Watch! These winners are now given the opportunity to open their own store in one of the shopping centres of the Group in Spain (La Maquinista or Gloriés). Read our article here to know more about the contest and the participants of this first successful edition!
Congratulations to all the winning projects and to all the teams that participated in this internal contest. URW Lab is already looking forward to the 2021 Innovation Awards with even more wonderful intakes from all teams across the globe!Julie Villet