Investing in research and development (R&D) has many advantages and it drives the most successful companies today. Testing, researching, developing and improving products and services to make them better, safer, and more accessible are at the heart of R&D.
With so much at stake, R&D needs to be done efficiently and effectively. Analytical R&D capabilities are essential to offer the most benefit to customers because they offer actionable insights that can drive growth.
What is R&D?
Research and development is the process of obtaining new knowledge, applicable to the needs of your business, for the development, design and enhancement of products, services, processes or technologies. R&D can be conducted in-house, under contract, or jointly with others.
Basic research goes into scientific principles from an academic perspective whereas applied research is about using that research in the real world. Product development is an offshoot of R&D that involves the whole product cycle, from conception to retirement.
Some benefits of R&D
One of the advantages of R&D is to give a company a competitive advantage. It may cut costs and increase productivity in such a way that competitors can’t replicate. It not only offers increased productivity but product differentiation.
Customers are constantly demanding new and improved products. By outsourcing R&D to firms with the right analytic capabilities, it is possible to come up with innovative products and services that customers have not had access to before.
R&D gives companies the opportunity to satisfy customer demand. Sales and marketing teams can create innovative marketing campaigns to introduce never-before-seen products or revolutionary new techniques, thus being able to sell more efficiently and increase their market share.
The evolving R&D process
The ever-growing amount of data has put pressure on those doing R&D – forcing them to change their way of working.
There are issues surrounding too many data sets, multiple data sources, lack of standardization in data formats, and not enough business-friendly analytics. It is becoming ever more important to use supportive digital technologies to help make sense of data and unlock its value.
Gathering the right data is a challenge for marketers, researchers and scientists, partly because data standards vary and wide-ranging types of data are collected. Standardizing and centralizing data has to happen to leverage it for product development.
With new types of digital tools – analytics, pattern recognition, automatic trend sensing etc. data can be accumulated and handled in the right way.
State-of-the-art instrumentation in the areas of microscopy, spectroscopy, chromatography and polymer testing are changing the process of R&D. Virtual experiments instead of physical ones are shortening time need to run experiments.
Advanced analytics are making R&D more efficient because instead of using guesswork and instinct for making decisions, they can be based on hard facts. This means resources are deployed to the right projects and used optimally throughout their life cycles.
Using advanced analytics successfully not only improves margins and operations but also spurs growth. Professional firms undertaking analytic R&D have the scientists, equipment, laboratories etc. to undertake efficient research with productive results that can be put to use.
R&D with analytical capabilities also helps to minimize your risks as you can see potential implications (including costs) of new strategies before you implement them.
By outsourcing research and development to a company with analytic R&D capabilities, you can not only save time but obtain valuable information that you might have overlooked.
These firms use state-of-the-art technologies to process data and can correlate data from different techniques to receive valuable insights. These insights could help your company to stay ahead of market trends and remain relevant in a constantly changing marketplace.