Tuesday, February 9, 2010

The Trend Radar – Managing Trends and Innovations

By Connie Harryman, Applied Concepts Creativity
Guest Blogger
Organizer IIR
LIVE Front End of Innovation Europe 2010

Topic: The Trend Radar – Managing Trends and Innovations Through Corporate Foresight

Speaker: Dominik Tappert: Head of Innovations, Kaefer Aerospace

Dominik Tappert began by posing this question, “Why do we need innovation and early trend detection?” The answer is to be prepared for that special moment.

Kaefer Aerospace is a worldwide leading integrator of insulation and interior solutions within the aerospace business. Our mission is to support our customer’s success by supplying comprehensive and innovation insulation systems and interior solutions. They are active in 3 countries and 7 locations.

One of the most significant trends in business is digitalization. The Internet totally changed the terms in different industries. You must recognize that the cost structure, the value chain and the hierarchy within those industries are now drastically changed.

The big traditional players did not anticipate these trends. Consequently companies outside the industry used their opportunities successfully.

Kaefer Aerospace does trend analysis and then turns these trends into business. A net of sensors build up the radar team which includes background, employee, radar-team, radar-head, and GEC.

Trend radar in the company leads to the innovation development process. This includes: exploration, project proposal, project execution, and result/know-how transfer. This is the process of creation. Then an innovation assessment is done with these categories: nominate, select, quality, research, and analyze.

In the next stage we look at these factors: trend proposal, trend candidate, trend draft, trend, and focus trend. The radar screen is systematic. It is divided into several sectors in terms of relevancy for our customers in terms of percentage.

Sector 1 (1-3 years) established trend
Sector 2 mid-term trend (1-3 years)
Sector 3 long term trends (greater than 3 years)

This is influencing the company by using radar methodology. We identify drivers, topics and trends evaluated, if our own platform supports collaboration, review of trends quarterly, and then make recommendations to the executive board for further decisions.

Kaefer Aerospace uses communication fact sheets with various descriptions of trends. This is given to different groups and departments. This dialog inspires development of the overall service offering and leads to concrete projects

For advancement in internationalization, the process is that each subsidiary in each country is appointed for the radar team. They utilize this methodology for the review of published trends for the identification of new trends. Small radars are arising which will result in a total radar.

For advancement with peer-review, the process is to warrant an independent estimation of trends. Internal experts estimate the relevance and degree of maturity of the trends. This results in an integrated second opinion. Then on the basis of collective discussions, the trend will be approved or rejected. Peer-Review is an instrument, and no longer the focus.

If you have questions, Dominik Tappert said that you are welcome to contact him.

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