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Patent Reform Makes R&D Portfolio Management a Necessity

R&D portfolio management is a technique used by leading innovation organizations to align new product development efforts with business strategy.  The methodologies and software used for optimizing a R&D portfolio, such as the Newlogic POPS application, provide an objective analysis of each project.  Projects are evaluated against a number of metrics to assess their attractiveness against business objectives within the limitations of the organization’s manpower and capabilities.  The results of R&D portfolio management can include increased throughput, increased revenue, and lower costs.

Research into the metrics used for R&D portfolio management by leading innovators was recently published by the PDMA and can be found here.

However, R&D portfolio management software has a perception of being expensive, time-consuming and optional.  Every company already practices some method of R&D portfolio management, be it an ad-hoc system, scheduled ‘scrums’, or is dictated by senior management.

With the implementation of The America Invents Act of 2011 (commonly known as Patent Reform), companies, of any size, will be forced to more actively manage their R&D portfolio.  Patent Reform will change how inventions are patented and what inventions companies can protect.  The two major components to the law that will force companies to adapt objective R&D portfolio management software are First To File and Prior User Rights.  The components make it more difficult and expensive to create IP assets of value.

More about the how patent reform will affect R&D, innovation and new product development can be found here, here and here

The Impact of Patent Reform on Corporate Innovation:

The changes embodied in Patent Reform will force R&D and new product development to do the following:

  • Decide what to file with USPTO as early as possible
  • Integrate patenting strategy with new product development processes
  • Modify, cancel outright, or reduce the expectations of open innovation initiatives
  • Identify and publically disclose ideas and inventions previously kept secret

Companies who are prepared for patent reform are changing they way they make decisions about their R&D projects, strategy, investment and reporting by integrating R&D portfolio management software because of the following issues;

  • Patent reform will change innovation, R&D and NPD strategy
  • Patent reform will change the time available for innovation
  • Patent reform will change how much budget is available for innovation
  • Patent reform will change which innovations can be protected
  • Patent reform will change how inventors respond to open innovation initiatives

 More about the how patent reform will affect R&D, innovation and new product development can be found here, here and here

 Planning For Patent Reform

R&D portfolio management software will not only counter the negative effects patent reform will have on innovation, it will improve a company’s overall R&D and new product development (NPD) performance.  R&D portfolio management software helps achieve these goals by providing the following:

  • Clearer vision of long-term trends in market/customers, competitors & technology
  • Better process to select the most promising innovation opportunities
  • Clearer & better process to plan and allocate development capacity
  • Better focus in product portfolio strategy priorities
  • Better focus in technology & manufacturing strategy priorities
  • Clearer & better process to optimize product & portfolio plans
  • Better process to determine which resources to build where
  • Better focus in product planning and faster product development

The software, and the implementation process, contributes to improving outcomes, reducing time to market, reducing costs and increasing the predictability of innovation programs.



  1. […] Read more about how Patent Reform makes R&D portfolio management software a necessity here. […]

  2. […] P&G’s experience highlights a few of the structural weakness and criticisms of Open Innovation; 1) Customers have significant limitations to their ability to innovate, 2) Open Innovation fails to capture out-of-category technology opportunities, 3) Open Innovation cannot be targeted at a company’s most pressing opportunities and 4) Patent reform is going to have a significant effect on Open Innovation initiatives (link, link, link). […]

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