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Determining the ROI of Collaborative Innovation & Problem Solving

Bill Bader
by Bill Bader on May 5, 2016 2:31:31 PM EDT

There are many ways for organizations to innovate and solve problems, but collaborating with other industry leaders to do so has many quantitative and qualitative benefits. Industry consortia, like iNEMI, bring together top minds from leading organizations to solve problems that can hinder innovation, efficiency, and quality in their respective fields, while bringing staggering return on investment to those who join. Here’s a look at the ROI of collaborative innovation and problem solving:


Joining an industry consortium generally comes with annual membership fees. These fees often allow members to participate in research and development projects of their choice and provide access to results from past projects.ROI-of-collaborative-innovation.jpg

Membership also puts companies in touch with a network of organizations representing the full supply chain, along with leading universities, research institutes, and government agencies.


In addition to membership benefits, joining a consortium comes with a number of other quantitative and qualitative savings which generally outweigh the costs of membership fees.

Leveraged resources
Working with other groups to innovate allows your organization to most effectively leverage its resources. Sharing costs and talent with other industry organizations can lead to serious cost and time savings which can be refocused on other core initiatives. Participation in iNEMI projects enables the organization to leverage resources up to 20 times more effectively. The cost benefits and thus financial ROI from participating in even three projects can yield a return that is easily 20 times your total investment of fees and resources. Thus it can have an annual value in the millions of dollars. iNEMI will happily provide a specific ROI assessment for you and your company upon request.

Supply chain enablement
In the fast-moving electronics industry, innovation can be enabled by solving common issues related to a lack of consistency or standardization. These issues can be detrimental to an organization’s supply chain and, by collaborating to solve them, industry organizations can realize cost per unit savings, higher yields, and enhanced performance.

Enhanced expertise
More qualitatively, collaborative innovation can increase the knowledge and expertise of engineers working in your organization. By learning from and working with other industry leaders, internal team members can use that knowledge to further organizational progress and direction. Additionally, the research produced from projects can be used in the same manner.

Strategic networks
Another qualitative benefit of collaborative innovation is the ability to build strategic industry networks made of partners, suppliers, agencies, or even competitors. These networks can provide lasting return by creating efficiency and sustaining innovation in the long term.

Understanding the costs and benefits of collaborative innovation can help inform a decision about joining an industry consortium. In many cases, the immediate resource and cost savings, in concert with long-term qualitative benefits, outweigh the membership costs of joining a consortium.

For more information on the benefits of iNEMI, please contact us.

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Bill Bader
Written by Bill Bader
Bill Bader was CEO of iNEMI from 2009 through 2017. He came to iNEMI after 26 years with Intel Corporation, bringing a wide range of experience, including factory management for high-volume production, new product development, hardware and software design and test, and assembly and test technology development. He also served as Intel’s representative on the iNEMI Technical Committee from 1998 to 2005.

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