|Clariant Innovation Excellence: Systematically Looking for and Developing the Products of Tomorrow |
Clariant Innovation Excellence is a key corporate initiative to strengthen Clariant's innovation capabilities to achieve sustained profitable growth and become a recognized leader in innovative solutions in the specialty chemical industry.
In order to achieve this vision Innovation Excellence provides innovation process blueprints and tools, builds capabilities, and fosters an innovation culture to translate knowledge into innovations better and faster.
Particular emphasis is put on processes and tools for systematically uncovering unmet needs and translating them into new products and services that enable our customers to address significant challenges better and more conveniently than currently possible.
This will help the organization to
- fill the pipeline with innovation opportunities, by providing systematic approaches at analyzing market needs,
- manage the innovation projects efficiently, by means of a Clariant wide innovation stage gate process,
- manage innovations effectively, by providing expert support through a dedicated team of innovation experts.
The initiative was developed hand in hand with both the Business Units and Clariant's Group Technology & Innovation to ensure that opportunities coming from new customer needs as well as those coming from new technologies are captured. The process ensures leveraging cross functional teams early on. A small central team of Innovation Master Black Belts (IMBB) supports innovation projects with all BUs to ensure a cross-business perspective. This setup complements and leverages the R&D setup of competence centers which are organized according to core technologies and provide their expertise across BU boundaries.
Building on the well established lean sigma culture of Clariant, Innovation Excellence utilizes design for six sigma as key method for managing innovation. Additional tools are available depending on the concrete challenge, particularly for managing the fuzzy front end of the innovation process. The IMBBs ensure that the innovation teams stay focused on the innovation opportunities and not on tools and processes by providing coaching for right approach and pragmatic tool usage.