What is an Innovation Consultant?

Not many jobs offer you the chance to design products, experiences and services that will impact the lives of millions of people. This one does.

Not many jobs offer you the chance to design products, experiences and services that will impact the lives of millions of people. This one does.

Over the years we've seen thousands of cool jobs come through Escape the City. One of the most popular titles which consistently receives a lot of applications is 'Innovation Consultant'.

But what is an Innovation Consultant, and how can you become one?

What is an Innovation Consultant?

Innovation consultants help organisations to solve complex issues, contributing to the development of new ideas and solutions. It could include working on a complex societal issue, managing a project from start to finish, generating ideas, prototyping and developing solutions with real impact.

"Innovation Advisors support complex change by bringing energy, expertise, and empathy to bear in the development, execution, and management of innovation projects." - Imperial College Health Partners

"The role will be varied and interesting, you will rarely be in the same place – working from home, hot-desking or visiting clients all over the UK. We’re looking for people who can work flexibly and creatively, navigating the boundaries of, for example, health and social care, or children’s and adult social care." - Innovation Unit

What kinds of tasks will an innovation consultant do?

  • Project management: organising your own and others work to deliver it on time in the most cost-efficient manner.  
  • Strategy and planning: Supporting team members in delivering a project
  • Managing relationships with stakeholders and keeping them updated on a project
  • Carrying out research across other organisations, sectors and countries, analysing the findings to generate insights for doing things differently
  • Developing new research approaches and searching for best practice solutions
  • Running idea generation workshops
  • Prototyping ideas to test them on a small scale
  • Measuring the impact of the solution
  • Developing recommendations for the implementation of the solutions on a larger scale
  • Facilitating new partnerships
  • Seek to find new trends and inspiration

What kinds of skills does an innovation consultant need?

  • Project management and organisational skills
  • Collaborative and networking skills
  • Forward-thinking
  • Problem-solvers with an ability to look at new ways of doing things
  • Adaptable to trying new things
  • Coaching skills
  • Research and analysis skills
  • Good communication skills

What experience do you need to be an innovation consultant?

One great thing about Innovation Consultant roles is that the experience tends to be very flexible. Unlike many jobs which will ask for a number of years in a certain role, an undergrad or masters degree, an innovation consultant is often welcome from any background. Most will ask for some project development experience.

"We’re seeking diversity of professional and personal experience as we know that this enriches our work. We would like you to consider applying even if you have some, but not all the experience listed in the application pack. Most important for us, is that you bring energy, insight, creativity and the determination to grow and scale new solutions to big social challenges." - Innovation Unit

"We don’t expect everyone to be good at everything and are most interested in candidates who have a clear sense of what strengths they could bring to the team and where they will need support and development." - Imperial College Health Partners

Do you think becoming an Innovation Consultant sounds like your kind of role? Search 'Innovation Consultant' on our job board or check out these previous job roles:

Social Innovation Consultant at Humanly

Innovation Advisor at Imperial College Health Partners

Senior Social Innovation Consultant at The Young Foundation

Consultant at Good Business

Innovation Consultant at Good Innovation

Innovation Consultant at Innovation Unit