TECH TRANSFER CONSULTANCY
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Resolve to Apply Tech Transfer Best Practices in the New Year

As we head into the new year, now is a good time to revisit and prioritize tech transfer best practices—that is, efficiently and effectively moving technologies out of university, government, and even corporate labs and into the marketplace. Since Fuentek has been actively blogging our recommendations and insights for a while now, we have a substantial library of posts that cover the key topics. Today we’ve gathered together 10 posts to give you easy access to these tech transfer best practices. Happy reading, and contact Fuentek to learn more about how we can help your technology transfer office (TTO) apply them.

1. IP Portfolio Optimization: How Does Your Garden Grow?

It’s easy for invention disclosures to pile up like plants in a greenhouse waiting to be put in the garden. “IP Portfolio Optimization: How Does Your Garden Grow?” discusses the steps to take to ensure your TTO’s IP portfolio is robust by:

  • Prioritizing the backlog
  • Eliminating low-potential technologies
  • Grouping similar technologies to maximize their potential
  • Developing an ongoing IP portfolio management strategy

2. Screening: Is the Technology Fit for Commercialization?

Effectively managing the IP portfolio requires being selective about where to direct your limited resources. Not every technology can (or should) go to market. Best practice is to start with a technology screening to determine which innovations are poised for commercialization success and which have low-potential and should be released/abandoned. “Screening: Is the Technology Fit for Commercialization?” goes step-by-step through what such a screening involves:

  • Triage first to check for red flags
  • Three key factors to consider: market, technology, and IP protection
  • Options for involving interns

3. How to Get the Best Market Feedback for Tech Transfer Licensing

Licensing success can be optimized by obtaining robust and comprehensive market feedback through expert interviews. Market feedback will inform your strategy as you ramp up to marketing a technology for licensing. How to Get the Best Market Feedback for Tech Transfer Licensing walks you through how to prepare for and execute effective interviews to gather useful market feedback on a technology:

  • Determine what you want to know
  • Identify who has those answers
  • Be able to express what’s in it for them
  • Advice for before and during the interview
  • Knowing when you have enough
  • Analyzing the responses

4. Prioritize Your Prospects: The ABCs of Technology Marketing

How do you identify the potential licensees? And which do you contact first? “Prioritize Your Prospects: The ABCs of Technology Marketing” helps you answer those questions with a process that includes:

  • Preparing the list
  • Prioritizing strategically
  • How to approach the A-list, B-list, and C-list

5. Six Tips for Writing Technology Listings for Tech Transfer

Considered the core part of almost any marketing campaign, a Technology Listing is a written description of an innovation and/or IP. Although a variety of terms have been used to describe them, listings are strategic descriptions intended for specific audiences of potential licensees or R&D partners. “Six Tips for Writing Technology Listings for Tech Transfer” provides some of the tips and tricks:

  • Determine your AMMO
  • Start the overview with “This technology is…”
  • Express benefits, not features
  • Use images that show off the potential applications
  • Have “fresh eyes” review it
  • Always post the listing online
Technology Listings in Various Formats

6. License Negotiation Forget-Me-Nots for Technology Transfer Offices

Some concepts are so fundamental that they can be taken for granted and forgotten. “License Negotiation Forget-Me-Nots for Technology Transfer Offices” recaps and gives real-world examples of the most important aspects of license negotiations:

  • Value is more important than price
  • Let the licensing prospect make the first offer
  • Grant exclusivity judiciously
  • Use caution in setting the royalty rate
  • Rethink the concept of the “counter-offer”
  • Remember: Both sides want the best deal possible
Technology Listings in Various Formats

7. How to Structure an Effective Tech Transfer Internship Program

One of Fuentek’s first projects was to clear out a massive backlog in a major research university’s IP portfolio while establishing an internship program to help tackle the job and give valuable experience to the university’s MBA students. (You can read the details of that success story here.) Since then we have supported several other universities with TTO internship programs. Our “How to Structure an Effective Tech Transfer Internship Program” blog post summarizes what we discovered to be best practices: 

  • Start early
  • Choose the right students
  • Focus on screening
  • Train thoroughly
  • Expect a learning curve
  • Evaluate and improve
Technology Listings in Various Formats

8. Improving Researcher Relations Before, During, and After Invention Disclosure (plus a free webcast)

Invention disclosures are a technology transfer office’s (TTO’s) bread and butter. Therefore, TTO success depends in large part on having a productive relationship with your organization’s researchers. “Improving Researcher Relations Before, During, and After Invention Disclosure (plus a free webcast)” discusses three areas where a TTO can focus these efforts:

  • Educating researchers about their tech transfer opportunities and obligations
  • Communicating effectively with researchers about their inventions
  • Elevating the profile of tech transfer in your organization
Technology Listings in Various Formats

9. Top Tips on Standard Operating Procedures for Tech Transfer Offices

Effectively using standard operating procedures (SOPs) is an excellent way for TTOs to greatly improve their performance and productivity. “Top Tips on Standard Operating Procedures for Tech Transfer Offices” provides some of the insights we shared during a webinar. These insights, which are based on first-hand experience, best practices, and real-world examples from providing consulting services to dozens of TTOs, focus on such topics as:

  • De-risking technology for commercialization
  • The importance of writing down the SOPs
  • Connecting SOPs to the IP management database
  • How SOPs contribute to data integrity
  • The benefits of SOPs
  • Formats for SOPs
  • Developing your TTO’s SOPs
Technology Listings in Various Formats

10. Data Benchmarking to Evaluate TTO Performance

For university TTOs, a review of performance, structure, and functions provides the opportunity to optimize internal operations, enhance engagement with internal and external customers (e.g., inventors and industry) and stakeholders (e.g., administration, board of directors, legislators), and revise policies and procedures to better align with current goals. AUTM’s Statistics Access for Technology Transfer (STATT) database is a useful starting place for comparing your TTO to peer organizations. But not all universities are equal in terms of research expenditures, staffing levels, and other metrics helpful in determining program effectiveness. Our “Data Benchmarking to Evaluate TTO Performance” post discusses:

  • Normalizing data for meaningful comparisons
  • Using the results to inform planning and advocacy
Technology Listings in Various Formats

So there you have it: The top 10 tech transfer best practices. Make it your new year’s resolution to prioritize these strategies and techniques. And contact Fuentek today to discuss how we can help you achieve greater success with your intellectual property (IP) management, marketing and communications, and strategic solutions.

Technology Listings in Various Formats