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What do companies view as top strategic priorities and R&D challenges over the next 3 - 5 years?

End-Customer focus with consumer inspired designs – R&D organizations across industries are grappling with rapid changes to consumer consumption, lifestyle changes and technological impact. These factors have resulted in trends such as shorter product lifecycles and increased product differentiation. The crucial challenge for businesses is to maintain the cycle of innovation that meets the changing consumer trends and incorporates design inputs directly from consumers using increasing technology connections like social media interactions and neuroscience driven product development.

Accelerating pace of innovation through agile development – Shrinking product lifecycles and increased time to market pressures, are impacting businesses innovation cycles in different dimensions like time, quality, specifications and cost. Organizations focus on developing products that are good enough or are first to market but not perfected. Focus is on how to scale from fail fast - learn fast initiatives.

Leveraging digital capabilities to accelerate design – Digital enablement and automation, are critical factors for reducing cost by increasing virtual ways of working. Digital enablement also provides the ability for R&D to flex and support newer business models that transition the organization from products to solutions and services

Talent Acquisition and Retention – R&D organizations globally are increasingly challenged to acquire and retain skilled talent. Knowledge based economies have steadily faced increasing challenges in talent retention due to intense velocity of innovation fuelled by start-up ecosystems.

How does the market shift in consumer centricity impact innovation decisions and R&D operations?

The shift in consumer preferences detailed in the section above, accelerates innovation and adds focus to R&D operations across businesses. R&D organizations need to interpret consumer insights which are not always easily translatable to R&D priorities. This creates the need to integrate R&D operations, marketing and field support teams very tightly which changes the profile of R&D from ivory tower to field driven. R&D organizations are also steadily transforming their collaboration model to stay connected with open source disruptive innovators.

Which digital areas have the most influence on new product development?

The industry landscape has seen a plethora of technology disruptions that have changed the way businesses innovate, operate and provide solutions to customers. I believe that the digital transformations in the realms of Internet of Things (IoT) enablement, sensor enabled product improvements and performance, neuroscience for customer insights, virtual prototyping using Augmented and Virtual reality for cost reduction in the development lifecycle, are becoming more and more the norm. AR/VR needs to be augmented with full Model based Design capabilities for effectively leveraging the benefits of virtual design, prototyping and digital testing. I also see that the need for artificial intelligence and machine learning to ensure adaptive solutions that deliver reduced cost, improved performance and support increased challenges for talent retention. 

Which sources of innovation do companies view as most effective?

Peter Drucker’s famous Innovation and Entrepreneurship body of work categorizes 7 sources of innovation. Of these 7, I personally think the following four sources are viewed by companies as the most effective.

Incongruity – This innovation type helps resolve the discrepancy between what is and what should be. Most innovation organizations highly value this capability of breaking down market requirements and competitive products / services into a parametric model and focusing innovation efforts on the white spaces and on what should be.

Industry and market change – I covered this briefly in the earlier section; we are seeing tremendous changes in consumer behaviour which are impacting product lifecycles, market acceptance and performance in different ways. The innovative organizations focus their efforts in converting this flux into strength and driving innovation that is first to market and good enough.

New Knowledge – Velocity of technological disruptions and distributed innovation in a knowledge based economy has opened many different avenues for business transformations that did not exist before. We have seen IBM become a service company and now they want to be a solutions provider. This rapid change in technology is viewed by R&D organizations as a game changer to innovate not just on the product or service, but from a business model standpoint.

The unexpected – This goes hand in hand with the industry and market change. The best innovators and marketers are always looking at the market place for untapped opportunities. Unexpected changes in market performance, for example better sales than expected, is increasingly used by R&D organizations to study the driving factors in-depth and understand how the product or service can be improved to make this unexpected increase in sales the norm. This analysis of the unexpected needs to be executed on the market place as a whole, not just the company’s products and services. The competition always has a compelling story to tell.

What would you like to achieve by attending the 8th Edition Market-Driven Innovation in R&D?

A.Network and share my experience and perspectives to help attendees in need of outside perspectives
B.Learn more about how current R&D challenges are being addressed
C.Enhance my creative thinking and perspective

Ahead of the 8th Edition Market-Driven Innovation in R&D Conference , we spoke with Stavros Stefanis, Principal, Strategy and Operations, Deloitte Consulting, USA about the top strategic priorities and R&D challenges and the sources of innovation that companies view as most effective.

To view the Conference Agenda, click HERE!

About the Conference:

This marcus evans conference is an exclusive opportunity for Innovation and R&D leaders to discuss  the missing link between market requirements and R&D capabilities. Our panel of experts will define optimal practice for raising the main value proposition that can convince the customer to buy your solution. You will learn how to leverage technologies to disrupt yourself and stay competitive in a digital environment.

By attending this marcus evans event, you will learn the best techniques to identify and target the true needs of your customer and the right strategy to create true value and cope with fast-changing dynamics. You will discover the best practices of partnering with start-ups and other organisations and creating a win-win opportunity where IP, revenue and profits are shared.

To view the Conference Agenda, click HERE!

Copyright © 2018 Marcus Evans. All rights reserved.

About the speaker:

Stavros Stefanis has more than 20 years experience in operational consulting. He has a Ph.D. in Process Systems Engineering and M.S. in Chemical Engineering from the Imperial College, London, UK. He also holds a B.S. in Chemical Engineering from the Aristotle University of Thessaloniki, Greece. He has more than 100 publications in the areas of Product Design and Development, Supply Chain, Sustainability, Systems Design and Maintenance Optimization. Stavros is a guest speaker and panelist in multiple events and he is also Board member for the MBA program of University of Florida.

Which sources of innovation do companies view as most effective?

An interview with Stavros Stefanis, Principal, Strategy and Operations, Deloitte Consulting, USA

Stavros Stefanis, Principal, Strategy and Operations, Deloitte Consulting, USA

Speakers Include: 
  • Airbus
  • Amadeus IT
  • BASF
  • Bayer
  • European Commission
  • Ferring Pharmaceuticals
  • GE Power
  • Impact
  • LEGO Group
  • Médecins Sans Frontières
  • Mercedes Benz Vans
  • Merck
  • Samsung
  • Stora Enso
Previous Attendees Include:
  • Baxter R&D Europe SPRL
  • Bosal
  • Danone Research
  • Dawn Foods
  • Electrolux
  • Esaote
  • Evonik
  • GE
  • KLM Royal Dutch Airlines
  • Philips
  • Prayon S.A
  • Roche Diagnostics
  • Solvay
  • Tetra Pak
  • Vodafone

For more information, please contact: Yiota Andreou

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