1.1 Background to the Study
In a highly competitive environment, innovation is the essential key to a firm obtaining a dominant position and gaining higher profits (Cerulli, 2014). Therefore, the understanding of which strategic innovation management practices lead to an improved organizational performance is important. When looking at innovation strategy, Pinoy (2015) posit that an effective strategy must correctly inform which job executor, job, and segment to target to achieve the most growth, and which unmet needs to target to help customers get the job done better. Siep (2010) states that when it comes to creating the solution, an innovation strategy is expected to impact positively on the organizational performance. It is worthy of note that some innovation strategies fail in these regards, which is why innovation success rates are perceived to be wishy-washy. Innovation in service-based industries has not been considered in details at the organizational level (Thomke, 2007). However, the banking industry is an attractive environment for innovation studies on organizations, due to its complex and important nature (Pennings & Harianto, 1992).
In the present era of economic instability, banking industry has emerged as one of the major and vital service industries, which has affected millions of lives of people all over the world. It is unique in its service, socially and economically. In 2008, many countries witnessed reformations in the state of affairs of the banking industry. These reformations are fallouts of change in technology, financial environment, and financial globalization and deregulation (Francisco & Emili, 2002).
According to Frances (2010), the banking industry has been continuously reforming with respect to market share, technology, competition and consumer demands. Frances (2010), in addition added that the vital force of this industry is the fast paced evolution of consumer requirements, wants and desires because there is a high demand by the consumers for the delivery of financial services in addition to an increased variety in investment and deposit products. Therefore, there has been a need for deposit money banks to amend their competitive strategies for products and marketing, in a wider context.
Deposit Money banks are financial institutions that consummate transactions with currency and credit, accepting deposits from the public and organizations alike, some of which are easy to withdraw on demand by cheques (Basu & Ghosh, 2016). Deposit money banks are commercial companies owned by stakeholders or investors. Their primary objective is to maximize profit by money transaction. Basu and Ghosh (2016) also state that deposit money banks are different from other banking institutions, for instance, bank of industry, insurance institutions, Microfinance banks and brokerage institutions etc. because they honor cheques drawn by the customers on demand deposit.
Deposit money banks offer financial services and products that empower individuals and organizations to be a part of a broader economy. They offer possibilities for investment of savings, risk management and extension of credit. These banks support the modern capitalistic society. While the vital functions performed by these banks have remained relatively constant over the years, the structure of the industry has been dramatically transformed. This change has been a result of independent domestic regulation, intense international competition, innovations witnessed within financial instruments, and an exponential growth in information technology. With the use of new financial regulations, the global economy is more interconnected, technology use is more crucial for banking operations, thus, bringing a suffocating pressure on managers and the institute workers (Tidd & Hull, 2003).
According to Cainelli, Evangelista and Savona, (2004) employment of survival measures have become vital for the banks due to growing competition. Innovation is the need of the hour in banking industry, as there has been a spur brought about by the rapid change particularly with respect to new distribution channel systems, such as internet and mobile banking (Cainelli, 2004). Being that these banks provide more convenient ways for their customers to access their accounts, it has generated significant additional operational costs to generate revenue. With the incremental cost element as a result of the added distribution channels and renewed efforts towards making all the possible cuts in the back office, banks have discovered that the secret of gaining profit is revenue enhancement (Aliber, 2007).
Deposit money banks are currently being forced to consider new ways to be on a competitive advantage (Werner, 2014). One way to ensure it is by increasing customer’s transaction fees on credit facilities and transaction interests. The speedy improvement of primary revenue-enhancement innovations is embedded in platform automation processes for the branch and offices’ employees, and in the latest channel technology systems, internet and mobile banking. While these technological innovations may have some similarities, they meet different needs in the distribution strategy of deposit banks (Mansury & Love, 2008). It’s because such banks deal principally with the services like innovation of products and improvement of existing ones, and are consequently required to remain relevant even as the business environment experience changes (Porter, 2008).
Deposit money banks play a vital role in business and entrepreneurial growth, and it’s essential for organizations to understand its processes of innovation in order to be able to compete in the challenging environment. An imperative factor in developing and sustaining competitive advantage is based on the ability of an organization to innovate (Tidd, 2003). Now, doing novel things in a better way is more important than just doing things better. A lot of prominence has been put on building of creative organizations and the management of the innovative processes, as essential elements of organizational survival (Brown, 1997). McAdam (2000) suggests that an effective innovation must incorporate all areas of an organization that possess the potential to affect every discipline and process. Innovation may be transformational, far-reaching or increment reliant on the nature and the effect of the change.
One way of achieving growth and sustaining performance is to provide an atmosphere which encourages and appreciates creativity within an organization. Certainly, there must be a level of cooperation and commitment from the senior management to expedite an innovative working environment. Tidd, Bessan and Pavitt (1997) defined innovation as a process of utilizing opportunity by turning it into new ideas, and placing these ideas in areas of wider use. Afuah, (1998) proposed that innovation is the usage of novel administrative and technical knowledge to provide a new product or service to customers. The present study intends to examine how deposit money banks generate innovative ideas for new products and services; strategically apply creative strategies to the performance of their organization to bring about change.
1.2 Statement of the Problem
The inability of the banking sector to cope with challenges is reflected in its dismal performance over the years and performance indicators for the sector are negative (Sana, Mohammad, Hassan, & Momina, 2011). Innovation comes with its challenges and uncertainties and many banks approaches towards innovation for increasing product performances have not yielded the desired returns (Siam, 2006). Uncertainties have affected the orientation of organizations towards innovation and its activities making innovation not being implemented leading to reducing organizational returns on investment, equity and performance generally (Abdi, 2014).
Topic innovation in banks involves means such as the introduction of new credit, deposit, insurance, leasing, hire purchase, derivatives and other financial products such as e-banking, investment and retail banking have been largely neglected and this have caused a reduction in the banks income as they mostly depend on customers deposit which have been on the decrease making it hard for banks to operate efficiently (Adams, 2014).
Larsen, Markides and Gary (2002) asserted that strategic innovation centers on changing strategy on organizational level over time, to pinpoint untapped position in the industry ahead of competing organizations. Its inability to bring capital growth in market by differentiating competences that provide coherence, thus, enabling the organization to promote increased revenue growth is a major bottleneck affecting the profitability of banks. The decrease in overall productivity, global competitiveness therefore minimizes the organization’s value. The impacts of these strategic innovations are absent in most banks as they are streamlined to their conventional approaches to tasks hence their not being able to perform optimally (Larsen, Markides & Gary, 2002).
In spite of the implication of innovation in translating organizational performance in banks, the impact is yet to be understood because of the vague understanding of the aim of innovation. Its impact on the performance of a bank remains a key ingredient of research (Mabrouk & Mamoghli, 2010). The process of innovation can integrate incremental and radical changes. Incremental changes produce small continuous improvements within organizations (Bessant & Caffyn, 1997). The need for innovation is like the lifeline for deposit money bank operating in an uncertain and competitive environment.
The survival and success of Deposit money banks in this present competitive global financial environment demands the incorporation of innovation by producing a regular stream of innovative processes in order to gain competitive advantage (Robbins &Coulter, 1999). Many banks at some point have undertaken some form of incremental innovation initiatives. Some of these banks consider that a cumulative gain in efficiency is greater overtime than that, which comes from occasional radical changes (Raymond, 1998). However, many of these short and medium term profits quickly vanish and get absorbed into the industry standard and as such cannot be relied upon as a prerequisite for its growth and survival (Unger, 2005).
Huynh & Lin (2013) stated that in today’s business environment, business organizations are facing a fierce competition in domestic and global markets and a primary factor causing this is lack of innovative strategies. To survive and develop, they must implement innovative strategies in order to increase their competitiveness and get more advantages which will lead to increasing performance but they don’t possess this leading to their business failure. Doyle (1994) stated that some banks adapt to these environmental changes and adopt new ideas and business methods which guarantee the survival and a competitive advantage. Some of the change agents that pushed financial institutions to be more creative include an intense competition, regulation, and technological advancement. Deposit money banks operating in Nigeria operate in a much regulated environment requiring a certain degree of uniformity in disclosing critical information. Continuous change, intense competition, demographic changes and customer needs affects these abilities of banks to build adaptability competency for their survival and organizational performance fostering.
Due to lack of organizational innovativeness, many organizations spend most of their time realizing and reacting to ill expected changes and problems instead of anticipating and preparing for them. Organizations caught off guard may spend a great deal of time and energy playing catch up. They use up their energy coping with inundate problems with little energy left to anticipate and prepare for the next challenges and this vicious cycle locks many organizations into a reactive posture and stifle their performance (Akinyele & Fasogbon, 2010). Innovative strategy is practiced for survival as well as sustenance (Aliber, 1987). Prior studies have not focused directly on the effect of innovation strategy, an all-inclusive perspective of innovation for enhancing organizational performance. Similarly, such study on Nigeria’s deposit banks has never been done before either. Some researchers are of the opinion that innovation strategy has a very significant contribution in the enhanced performance of any organization others are the opinion that it does not contribute the performance of an organization. These uncertainties forced the need for a research study in this area taking Nigerian perspective as a case-study in order to explore the impact of strategic innovation on the performance of Deposit money banks in Lagos State.
Organizational performance involves the recurring activities to establish organizational goals, monitor progress toward the goals, and make adjustments to achieve those goals more effectively and efficiently and most banks have not been able to remain viable and relevant to its stakeholders over time thereby they requiring change though innovative practices (Njagi & Kombo, 2014).
Most banks do not realize the impact of properly managing its processes and therefore leave policies in the hands of line managers and board of directors who are non-experts to implement or enforce strategies, policies, processes, programmes and practices and hence the values that would have accrued to such banks by properly managing their processes are lost in such banks (Soomro Gilal & Jatoi, 2011). Uncertainties as regards innovation strategy and organizational performance forced the need for a research study in this area taking Nigerian perspective as a case-study in order to explore the impact of strategic innovation on the performance of Deposit money banks in Lagos State.
1.3 Objective of the Study
The main objective of this study is to evaluate the effect of innovative strategies on the performance of selected deposit money banks in Lagos State, Nigeria. The specific objectives are to:
H01 – Topic innovation has no significant effect on the organizational performance of the banks in Lagos state.
H02 – Market innovation has no significant effect on the performance of the deposit money banks selected in Lagos state.
H03 – Process innovation has no significant effect on the organizational performance of the deposit money banks in Lagos state.
H04 – Organizational innovation has a non-significant effect on the organizational performance of the selected deposit money banks in Lagos state.
1.6 Scope of the Study
This research focused on the effect of innovation strategies on performance of selected deposit money banks in Lagos State of Nigeria which were selected based on their assets, profit before tax and customer deposit in the financial year of 2014 (2014 Nigerian Stock Exchange Financial Report). The selected banks were ranked among the top 10 banks of Nigeria post banking recapitalization in 2014 (Oleka & Mgbodile, 2014). The financial reports of all these banks