When a flood of ideas has your innovation program feeling stuck in the mud with more ideas than budget to work on them it might be time to rethink your approach. While not every idea can be built, every idea in your company can be recorded and the employee inventors recognized.
An idea bank in combination with a provisional patent program gives a company and its employees a clear pathway for harvesting, evaluating, and inexpensively protecting ideas. It is also a great way to recognize your employee inventors. With ideas identified and protected the company now has the time to develop plans and prioritize what ideas to build, what patents to license, and what to pass on.
Setting up a program is easy and drives employee engagement. Here are three key steps:
- An invention disclosure form lets employees record their ideas. Organizing the forms in a database creates an idea bank. An idea review team evaluates the entries in the idea bank and decides which ideas are worth protecting.
- For ideas worth protecting, the invention disclosure form serves as the basis of a provisional patent application. A good description of an idea is all that is needed. A provisional patent records an invention date and grants a patent pending status for 12 months. Done right, a provisional patent can be prepared and filed on the cheap, stretching your budget, patenting more, and paying less.
- Provisional patents get evaluated during the pending year by the idea team, those that protect company products or can be licensed get converted into non-provisional patent applications, the kind that gets examined and issue as patents.
So, what is keeping you from setting up a program for your company?
Ways we can help you:
- Drafting, filing, and prosecuting patent applications
- Embedding with innovation teams to harvest, refine, and protect ideas
- Identifying patentable ideas within startup technologies
- Landscaping markets to identify new opportunities
- Developing patent strategies for products and startup
- Managing the patent creation process from concept to product launch
- Searching ideas for prior art patents
- Reviewing prior art patents with product development teams
- Building IP for VC/PE portfolio companies
Learn more at www.Gr8BigIdeas.com
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