8 Must-Have Features of IP Management Software to Look For
Intellectual property (IP) can be one of the most valuable assets a company has in its wheelhouse. Unfortunately, many business owners do themselves a disservice by not taking IP management seriously. Businesses should look at IP management software from reputable companies like Dennemeyer to better understand and protect their intangible assets.
That said, there are a lot of IP management solutions on the market. If you’re at a loss for what to look for in IP software, here are eight must-have features to take to the patent office.
Disclosure forms for intuitive ideas
When employees create new ideas, they need a convenient place to submit their designs. The IP software you choose needs to have an intuitive submission tool that doesn’t require extensive training.
Employees should be able to upload their ideas or complete a user-friendly form. Providing workers with a hassle-free space to provide feedback and share information is a must for any business. Your new software should be an easy-to-access source of shared knowledge.
A tool that welcomes collaboration
Businesses need collaboration tools in their IP management software. Two or more users should be able to work on the project simultaneously, so they can input their ideas and make changes as they brainstorm together. The cooperative features should save different versions while including prompts that help them move through the creative process.
IP management software is all about protecting your ideas, but that doesn’t mean it can’t help your team nourish new ones.
Intellectual property includes all intangible assets that need protection through trademarks, copyrights, and patents. As more firms recognize the importance of IP, they want to audit the different ideas in the company to find the ones they can protect. Ideal IP management software has an easy-to-use auditing tool.
Users can track their IP and analyze the protective measures. These tools also let businesses track when the protective features need updating, such as when your patent renewal date approaches. With an auditing tool, businesses can remove wasteful assets and focus on profitable ones.
Education and training tools
Employees are the bread and butter of your organization, so they need to know how to handle your assets correctly. Team members should understand how to protect company intellectual property and how to use it properly, and good IP software can help them get there. Since companies are continually creating new IPs, employees also need access to status updates to learn what projects they cannot share outside of the organization.
The internal IP management advisors need to continually update their training tools to offer the most up-to-date information to employees. Ongoing education and training are assets that many employers, unfortunately, forget to prioritize even though it can benefit workers at all levels.
Detailed and researchable records
As the IP software tracks ideas and manages the collaborative tools, it needs to create a collection of detailed records with a searchable database.
The records should have a digital paper trail so legal teams can follow the protective process. If there is a problem that slows the process of earning a patent or copyright, the legal team should see where the problem arose. With a searchable record, management can help team members who struggle through the process.
IP software shows how trademarks appear in emails and commerce practices. Being able to access records of usage can speed up trademark renewals as well as licensing and invention discussions. The history should be available to the employees who need it, and they should be able to add records through an easy-to-use interface.
The best IP software needs to track the process from ideation to protection. It should also help with renewals and usage after the IP is protected through patents and trademarks. These are essential components for this type of software.
The end-to-end tracking should be accessible and help employees see the progression of capturing the idea, analyzing it, writing the patent application, filing it, and managing the protective documents. For more help, IP software should offer a quick view of the portfolio for each idea.
Because IP applications are full of minute details that are easy to overlook, the best software should have built-in compliance checks. As the government agencies change their applications, the software should update, so employees are always completing the applications correctly. The updates should be automatic and free of charge that business owners don’t have to worry about keeping an eye on compliance blind spots.
Legal experts spend significant amounts of time trying to stay compliant with the latest updates and rules, and a built-in compliance system could help them manage their patents and trademarks around the world. The software should immediately alert users if an update is needed, and they should alert users if they’ve missed a step.
Since IP software collects information about ideas and helps employees work toward legally protecting their ideas, the best software should have automation that puts the correct information into the applications. With automated completion and compliance checks, businesses should have fewer rejected applications.
Customizable data visuals
Because applications and portfolios are filled with information, the amount of information in the system can be overwhelming. The best software can present data in readable ways that users can customize based on their preferences, like seeing global patents in a list or on a map. Customization allows companies and individual users to alter their tech to suit their needs, which can make their workflow more efficient and less headache-inducing.
Protecting IP should be a priority for all businesses. Having IP management software that is user-friendly with plenty of features is a necessity that makes patents, trademarks, and more accessible. It should also have automated forms, detailed and searchable records, and visualization tools.