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Open Innovation FAQs

FAQs for seekers
When to use SpecialChem Open Innovation services?
Technology Scouting services work well in case:
  • You are clear on what you seek: you can precisely describe what your technical problem is
  • You are clear on what you DO NOT want: you know the routes that are of no interest for you
  • You have real business at sight: you address an existing market, by opposition to a potential future market
  • You are attractive for the solvers: you can tie the solution to extra business for you … and the solvers
  • You are open: you are ready to explore different collaboration models
  • You show will to collaborate: the more collaborative you appear, the more solvers will feel at ease with like you!
  • You have time: if you look for a solution for the next quarter, it might be tough

When not to use our Tech Scouting services?
Don’t use Technology Scouting:
  • As technical support: Techno Scouting is not an alternative to a phone call to a supplier or a discussion with you colleague from R&D. The goal is to find un-obvious solutions from un-obvious sources.
  • As alternative to a Google search: It’s for topics that do not have immediate solutions nor solutions you can find online after couple of hours of search.
  • As competitive watch: if you want to find out what your competitors know or not, there are other, much more effective methodologies

We have a great R&D department. Why should we use Open Innovation?
Well, Open Innovation is not in competition with internal R&D. The most successful R&D organization have tested and adopted Open Innovation as a normal practice. In particular, they have found the balance between what’s coming from the inside vs the outside. They have mapped the topics, technologies, goals where OI is generating bets results.

How do you protect my IP, as a seeker?
The goal of your proposal is to show you have a solid solution, NOT to describe all the technical details of it. Our advice is “Tease, Don’t Teach”. So, non-protected proprietary information should not be shared in your proposal. Only information you would share to answer an invitation to tender should be sent. Later on, when you have entered into one-to-one discussions with the seeker, then YOU will decide if you disclose

How can you protect my business idea?
Good question. In the RFP published, after a careful framing together with you, we will not disclose your business intent (new product launch, revolutionizing a market, improving a product…). We will focus on the technical challenges, so that no-one could “steal” your business idea. After the RFP is closed, once you will are connected to potential solvers in a personal, one-to-one manner, YOU will decide to disclose the information you need to collaborate. No more.

Is my RFP anonymous?
Yes, in most cases we do not disclose the name of the seeker. We only disclose it when it provides a very substantial benefit.

Will I post directly my problem in the SpecialChem community?
No. A SpecialChem expert will get in touch with you. You will fill in an RFP template and our expert will refine it with you, until we fill it’s ready to be published in our community.

Do you commit on results?
Yes, absolutely. First, we will discuss your problem in details. Under NDA if you want. Now if we think it is not suited for an OI Tech Scouting, we will not pursue together. In case we go on, then we will agree on a target number of responses. If we do not reach it, we will bring your money back.

FAQs for Solvers
How detailed should my proposal be?
Your proposal should explain how it does answer the request, how mature your solution is, why your solution is better than other ones, and ideally the costs and availabilities. If some resources (equipment or financials) are required to fully develop or scale up your technology, you should mention it in your proposal too.

Is my IP protected if I submit a proposal?
The goal of your proposal is to show you have a solid solution, NOT to describe all the technical details of it. Our advice is “Tease, Don’t Teach”. So, non-protected proprietary information should not be shared in your proposal. Only information you would share to answer an invitation to tender should be sent. Later on, when you have entered into one-to-one discussions with the seeker, then YOU will decide if you disclose more confidential info about your IP.

Who owns the information submitted?
The content of your proposal remains your property. SpecialChem has no rights on received proposal. We will never use it in any other project nor in any sort of advertisement or communication.

What happens to your proposal?
Proposals are put under a friendly format and shared with the seeker. We do not filter them. Filtration should happen by the quality of the RFP. The seeker, our Client, sees your proposal and evaluates it: technical fit, maturity, uniqueness, and quality. He will contact the submitters directly if he is interested. Our goal is to allow this high-value connection to happen, but we are not actively promoting your proposal vs others nor managing any business conversation in your name

Will I be notified if my proposal is not accepted?
Yes, SpecialChem makes sure that each submitter gets notified within 60 days after the RFP closure. We will let you know whether the seeker wants to pursue or not.

Do I have to pay something to submit a proposal?
No, it’s free. And you don’t even need to be part of the SpecialChem community!

Want to know more? Want to know about our pricing? Get in touch with us

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