Applications of Structured Innovation
There are three types of problems we face in business:
- Inspection Problems. These are problems for which the solution is known and obvious. For example, a chemical reaction rate is low. We know that increasing the reactor temperature will solve this problem as this is part of a standard procedure.
- Engineering/Optimization Problems. These are problems for which we don’t know the answer but we know how to get it. For example, we want to improve the selectivity and yield of a chemical reaction. We know how to use Six Sigma to correlate independent reactor variables with dependent output variables to optimize operation.
- Innovation Problems: These are problems for which the existing solutions are insufficient or there are no known solutions. For example, an established chemical reaction has been optimized and cost reduction engineering projects have been done but the process is uncompetitive. New chemistry or process designs are needed to make the process competitive.
Most of the problems faced are Type 1 and Type 2, but solutions for Type 3 problems typically produce significant and sustainable economic gains. Pretium has developed specialized methods to generate Type 3 solutions for manufacturing Improvement, Product Development, Business Process Design, High Reliability Organizing, Business Strategy and Intellectual Property (Patents).