Why You Need to Have a Plan for IP Knowledge Management in 2022


Knowledge management is an accepted organisational practice that includes a set of processes to create, retain, share, and use knowledge. Intellectual Property Knowledge Management (IPKM) takes inspiration from these processes and is built over a centralised repository of all business relevant patents that facilitates easy accessibility and sharing of patent literature and insights.

However, IPKM is different from IP Asset Management (IPAM). IPAM deals with processes that help in managing your invention disclosures, new applications, existing IP portfolio and its annuity costs. On the other hand, IPKM takes into account all the intellectual data, including those held by the competition, associated with a particular product/technology area.

How is IPKM helpful?

A well-organized IPKM solution helps your IP team be more agile and responsive to changes in the external environment. It helps drive competitive intelligence, R&D intelligence, product commercialization and overall IP strategy. Moreover, maintaining updated patent datasets enable you to identify complementary technologies of your core products, as well as competitors’ patenting trends and technology focus.

What should you look for in an ideal IPKM solution?

An ideal IP Knowledge Management solution builds over a comprehensive global patent collection and would:

  • Allow centralization and storage of key patent records.
  • Enable the creation of an internal repository with patent metadata that is accessible at all times and used for patent analysis.
  • Keep dynamically changing pieces of patent information updated so that the viewer always sees the latest information.
  • Permit efficient sharing of data such as technical know-how to help people with their projects.
  • Allow the creation of taxonomies such as internal custom categories and classifications to locate patent records easily.
  • Offer the option of creating projects and sub-projects with categories to find patent records of interest quickly.
  • Enable you to set up alerts for new patent records to monitor new technologies, competitors, and inventors in addition to capturing legal changes of existing patents.
  • Draw on insights from integrated patent data and coordinate insights across the organization.

Designing the right IPKM structure and processes

Patents related to a single product can be related to various technical fields. Good IPKM implementation begins with creating a technology schema (taxonomy) against which you would organise all the IP data. This technology hierarchy can then map into projects/folders, subprojects, and categories of custom fields inside the subproject. A best practice approach would be to create a holding project for the main technology/product and design subprojects around the sub-technologies. Various rules can then be implemented to search and classify patents into the right technology set. The goal would be to have an updated set of patents with information on the technology and competitors of all core and complementary technologies. The right IPKM platform can make each of the above steps easy and with an integrated worldwide database you can build patent datasets corresponding to the taxonomies.

PatSeer has a Global Projects and subprojects option to create a framework for a comprehensive IPKM strategy. Try PatSeer now

As IPKM is a continuous process, the patent dataset should be updated and reviewed on an ongoing basis. This process can involve different teams for each technology area, so a collaboration capability to jointly review a collection of records is fundamental to the solution’s design. To know which professionals are required for various IPKM activities, refer to the image below.

IP Knowledge Management structure

In a nutshell

An IPKM system is an agile and responsive platform that helps create a base over which IP business decisions can be made. The system enables desired teams to have access to right knowledge at the right time. Thus, it helps speed up decision making and facilitates cross-functional innovation and collaboration.

PatSeer is a patent research software with a host of workflow and collaboration tools that can help you set the right IP knowledge management framework across your organisation. It features an intuitive UI with powerful metrics to track ongoing projects. It allows ranking, reviewing, annotation and sharing of curated patent datasets across teams to facilitate collaborative decision making. Its powerful patent analysis tools provide key insights required for complex IP decision making.

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