In business environments that are fueled by innovation, diligent budgeting and spend management can mean the difference between sinking and swimming. While introducing new intellectual property (IP) can increase a business’s net worth from a revenue standpoint and by increasing the likelihood of procuring investor funding, it’s by monitoring resource investments that a business can successfully budget for the future.

When so much depends on the ability to introduce new products to the market, it’s important to track investments in development, the costs of launching those products, and the legal price of protecting them and preserving their integrity. IP management software helps organize all of those factors and provide clear visibility into data like dollar investments, as well as more subtle areas like production velocity. Here are five budgeting factors that IP management software provides insight on:

IP Personnel Spending

Asset by asset, you can navigate your library of IP in your management software and see all team members involved in the development process. These may include individuals both within and outside of your organization. Based on your findings, you can discover if there are friction points in the development or approval process and determine if production can be accelerated with a personnel change, removal, or addition – all of which translate to budget influences.

Legal Spending

How many attorneys or law firms are involved in the protection and monitoring of your assets? Do you have separate firms for certain types of protections (trademarks vs. copyrights vs. patents)? Using your IP management software, you can assess the cost of services for each legal partner and determine whether these responsibilities can be consolidated under one firm at a less expensive rate or allocated among different firms more efficiently. Additionally, you can hold your legal partners accountable for the work they’re performing, and identify if you are spending with the right provider.

Technology Spending

Similar to personnel spending, it may be the tools you’re equipping your team with that are holding them back. By pinpointing where innovation is losing momentum, you can have a direct conversation with that team or team member and find out how you can enable them to be more productive. They may require new software or hardware, or could even be underutilizing technology that is already in place at your organization.

Identifying a Revenue Cycle

The time it takes to get from inception to development, then to registration and product launch is the time it takes for your product or IP to start bringing in money. During that timeframe, you’re working with a particular budget, but once sales come in from your newly introduced product the equation changes. In other words, the view of production velocity that you get from your IP management software gives you prediction capability when it comes to budgeting for the future.

Patent Cost Forecasting

Patent cost estimation is a handy feature found in some IP management software. Tools that calculate these estimates combine international patent fees and exchange rates, local attorney fees, and other costs for renewal or protective registration. The aggregate value can then be forecasted over several years, helping you set goals for your organization and calculate whether maintaining support of a particular IP asset will no longer be viable after a certain point.

Control over your spending and budgeting process is only one way that data from IP management software benefits businesses. Visibility into your IP’s performance can actually give you the information you need to more effectively leverage your assets in the market through continued protection or divestiture.

KEYWORDS: patent, IP management, innovation, trademarks, copyrights, revenue cycle.