The Revolution In Innovation-Enabling Tools, April 18, 2012, discussed the emerging market in innovation tools and software. The collective demand for “innovation” from corporations has lead to many new market segments to provide services of one form or another. It has also lead to arms-length providers of off-the-shelf tools and shrink wrapped software providers. The most sophisticated software tools require service assistance to install and configure them, as one would expect.
GGI first researched these emerging tools privately in 2001 and 2002. Two companies that we would all agree are leaders with longevity, were also early market adopters of these emerging tool sets. One company made tractors. The other company made diagnostic instruments. Over the past decade, GGI has researched the subject several times on our own account.
By 2004, we found about one-third of first-to-market companies had gone out of business. Their offerings however shaped more useful solutions now offered by new entrants with better business models. Clearly, this tools and shrink-wrapped software segment had all the attributes of an emerging market.
In 2008, we statistically researched the industry penetration of some 67 tools out of about 300 we identified. These 67 were determined to be “generally available,” meaning any professional that went looking (with a bit of zest) for tools and software touted to facilitate innovation could find them.
In 2013, we are not seeing that corporations are institutionalizing innovation into the principles and practices of research and product development in the same manner or rate that lean and six sigma tools have been institutionalized. The activities and procedures required in invention and innovation-related company processes are overwhelmingly deterministic.
The Maker Movement Spurs Corporate Innovation and Entrepreneurship [Machine Design – July 18, 2013], discusses a competitive landscape that might induce some established companies to redouble their efforts regarding systematic innovation.