Gamechangers Who Disrupt the Workplace

August 7, 2017

*Registrations are closed and Startups are selected. Preparations for the innovation exchange are in progress

In times where we put effort into managing waste, raising awareness for food and skipping plastic bags in supermarkets, offices cannot fall behind on the path towards circularity. There is a need for more ecofriendly solutions, especially in the workplace. ISS and partners therefore kicked off the first out of three ‘disrupt the workplace challenges’ with this subject. Startups are welcomed to bring their innovations to the table and join ISS, Enexis, PWC, Delta Lloyd and Frieslandcampina in their efforts to realize more circular offices.


Disrupt the workplace challenge


How can we reduce our waste to zero? How can we get to more sustainable office equipment, interior, and real estate? How can we effectively diminish our CO2 footprint on our employees’ commutes? Companies are becoming increasingly aware of the need for change regarding these subjects. Disrupting the workplace means initiating impactful solutions, viable for growth. In the upcoming year, three challenges will be covered, each with the aim to set up a new pilot in cooperation with a startup.


The open innovation challenge, organized by Accenture, for ISS, Enexis, PWC, Delta Lloyd and FrieslandCampina aims to connect startups with incumbents and create meaningful pilot projects. Corporates get the possibility to connect with startups and to experiment with innovative new ventures. Startups get a chance to develop and pilot their ideas at the premises of the involved partners, when a match is defined.


Circular facility management


Facility management does not just mean emptying the trashcans and making sure lunch is ready, it’s the whole experience that comes with working at an office. As we are becoming more conscious about healthy living, keeping the earth clean and innovating towards the future, our offices cannot fall behind. Keep in mind that most of us spend at least a third of our time awake, at work.


ISS is one of the largest facility services providers worldwide. Many of their clients developed a similar need for circularity in the office. Daan de Geus, Innovation Manager at ISS: “For both partners and startups, working together on these shared challenges establishes a community. Also after finishing the pilot, they will more easily stay in contact with one another to continue the road towards circularity. Besides that, tackling issues like these with a group of knowledgeable innovators has a larger effect on circularity in general. The companies involved will not only learn from their own pilot, but will learn from five different pilots at once, without having to carry all of them out themselves”.


ISS wants to incorporate circularity in the work environment, in a broad sense. Daan hopes that currently unknown startups will bring forth solutions that can have significant impact and favor the help of an experienced partner to scale up their effect. By bridging between startups and corporates, ISS takes steps to diminish cultural differences between the big and the small and pushes towards a more circular work environment.


Traction for your startup: five for the effort of one


If you ask a startup: what is your biggest challenge in the starting phase, their answer will probably be ‘getting traction’. Often, the more innovative the innovation, the more difficult it is to get to a proof of concept and thus get traction in the market. This initiative helps startups to pitch their idea to five large corporations at once, a valuable community of various established companies.

What’s in it for…

For startups


  • Get insight into your market value. How attractive do corporates find your offering?
  • Opportunity to connect and meet with 6 corporates at once. Think of them as customer, marketing channels, or a potential strategic partner.
  • Get a chance to experiment together with the corporates on their premises.
  • The pilot projects will help you steer into the right direction.
  • Potentially scale up the experiment or find a partner or potential investor to work with.

For corporations


  • Solve business problems quicker and at lower risk
  • Expand into future markets by accessing new capabilities and channels
  • Innovate the brand to attract customers, partners and talent
  • Rejuvenate corporate culture
  • Scout for talent


We are looking for startups in seed, venture or growth stage, willing to cooperate. We mainly scout at national level (the Netherlands), but will also consider international startups with great potential.

  1. Sign up for the challenge.
  2. The 10 most relevant innovations will get selected by the partners.
  3. Pitch, meet, and connect in September, date to be announced.
  4. Start a pilot project.


Circular Economy

Clean & Affordable Energy



Our innovation class of 2017 is now complete. We are proud to have over 750 of the best innovations joining the Innovation Awards 2017 competition and joining the network of game changers.


The eleventh edition of the Innovation Summit is the place where all players of the innovation ecosystem gather
More than 750 innovations have signed up for the eleventh Accenture Innovation Summit. But only 55 will get the opportunity to pitch their concepts at the final Summit and compete for a Blue Tulip.

Accenture Innovation Awards