Research and Development plays an important role in leveraging technology to reap maximum benefits in the form of innovative products, processes, and services. Many companies tend to think thatR&D is like a holy grail, but it’s not! They do not understand the importance until its too late.
The fact is that, R&D is the only function that provides a platform for innovation and creativity to flourish in an organization. Numerous innovative breakthroughs happen only because of meticulous efforts of the R&D function. Consistent efforts are needed when one is in quest of research, every failure in R&D effort escalates the pressure to perform.
Is R&D that Important?
One is knowledge and another one is technology, these are the two vital ingredients for the recipe of innovation, and for successful R&D; innovation is the only prima facie.
When a company takes R&D into significant consideration, they get a huge influx of knowledge. This is what makes these companies so amazingly successful, their contribution to R&D melts down to a world of useful knowledge which the company can use to further develop its main product lines.
R&D helps a business to have a competitive edge over its competitors. It is only the R&D function that helps organizations develop plans much ahead than other functions. The R&D function requires a clear foresight about future problems and its solutions, in its development role, it can act as a catalyst for speeding up the organizational growth by introducing breakthrough products in the market.
The Key to Everything is Patience, you get Chicken by Hatching it, not by Smashing it. –Arnold H. Glasow
The R&D efforts can take some time to materialize, but once they succeed, the financial returns can be quite high. Many successful companies in industry sectors like pharmaceuticals, chemical and automotive, invest a substantial amount of capital expenditure and strive to be ahead of others because they believe; expenses on R&D are not to be considered as expenditure but as an investment.
The true test of R&D function lies in time to market. Business exists for the sake of making profits. So, the role of R&D in minimizing the time to market becomes extremely important. Unless the R&D efforts in the lab cannot be scaled up within a reasonable time frame, little can be expected in terms of the functional credit to be assigned to R&D.
Significance of R&D for Medium and Small Business
Big MNCs have billions to spend on R&D but most of the small businesses do not have the same capabilities, this does not mean R&D is impossible. There are plenty of government initiatives, which are aimed at leveraging the R&D opportunities for medium and small business. Even venture capitalists have also recognized the importance of these smaller entries.
Moreover, R&D is typically what your business can take advantage of public resources and eternal knowledge to get some hands-on experience because, at the end of the day, useful knowledge is the most important thing your company needs. The R&D department is not worth of if the desired outcomes of R&D are not utilized.