Last week, IP.com’s Erik Garcell PhD spoke with Jim Anderton of engineering.com about protecting your most important asset: your IP. They had a lot to say about how engineers and IP professionals can revisit the processes they use to move ideas through their innovation lifecycle, effectively changing the way they think about how to manage and monetize their intellectual property. Garcell explains how, with IP.com’s IQ Ideas Plus™, you can close the gap between R&D and IP, saving your organization precious time. But first, we must understand what IP is and why it’s so important to your organization.
What is IP?
At its core, intellectual property is a novel invention (or a novel improvement on an existing invention). If you created this technology and you think it could be valuable for your business, you want to protect your rights to use it. There are lots of ways to do this, including trademarks, industrial designs, trade secrets, databases, copyrights, and patents. The Holy Grail for engineers is a patent.
Patents protect your intellectual property by giving you the exclusive right to use them. This helps place a value on your IP and, in turn, grows the value of your company. For startups and small businesses, having strong patents is useful during both IPOs and M&As.
Approach IP Differently
To take full advantage of your novel idea, you need to work quickly. However, traditional innovation processes aren’t very fast at all. First, engineers can get stuck in ruts during brainstorming. Garcell shared an example of a former coworker who, after successfully replacing a worn part with a tungsten carbide replica, attempted to solve every mechanical issue with tungsten carbide parts.
Then, when an engineer does invent a novel solution, it has to be reviewed by the IP team to ensure no one else has had this idea. The engineer needs to explain their invention in a way that makes sense to an IP professional. The IP professional also has to review it quickly enough for the engineer to prioritize valuable discoveries.
This process is often time-consuming, can be inefficient, and could mean that you’re missing IP opportunities. In our first-to-file patent system, speed is critical. IP.com’s IQ Ideas Plus is designed to eliminate these inefficiencies with a collaborative, intelligent workflow.
Innovating with IQ Ideas Plus
IQ Ideas Plus first guides engineers through ideation using TRIZ methodology. Thanks to AI, there’s no required training to reap the benefits of this problem-solving methodology when you use IQ Ideas Plus. The system pushes you to think in new ways, whether you use IQ Ideas Plus alone or add it to your existing ideation process.
Once you have a promising idea, it’s time to see if it’s truly novel. IQ Ideas Plus helps you write a description of your invention, offering relevant concepts and keywords. Then the system gives your idea an Invention Novelty Score based on similar patents. Now, engineers are receiving immediate feedback on whether or not they should pursue an idea further. Only the best ideas end up with your IP team, increasing their productivity and speeding up the innovation lifecycle.
Changing the way you think about intellectual property protection to close the gap between R&D and IP saves time. Engineers know where to innovate and how to innovate thanks to AI-backed patent analysis. This reduces the time ideas spend with the IP team before they can be iterated upon and monetized. Saving time saves organizations money. Saving time also gets your novel technologies to market faster, allowing you to capitalize on opportunities in your market.
In today’s fast-paced, competitive technology landscapes, can your business afford inefficiencies within your innovation process?