Businesses are under constant pressure to control or reduce R&D costs while continuing to deliver novel, competitive products. Many successful businesses are choosing to go ‘lean’. The use of contract research organizations, joint ventures, academic partners and consortiums are on the rise as organizations try to innovate faster and reduce operational expenditure.
Surveys reveal that many top R&D outsourcing decision makers acknowledge a rising trend of shifting internal resources to more strategic activities to improve performance, based on the drive to gain costs savings. But despite this, many concede that they lack a clear strategy in how these changes in business practices can be successfully implemented to achieve their desired benefits.
The use of outsourcing is accelerating, and it is forecast to provide an ever-increasing portion of R&D capability for businesses. This shift from internal to external resourcing will have a profound impact on how teams coordinate and execute R&D projects, as organizations pivot from cross-departmental teams towards managing large, dynamic networks of internal resources and external partners. The shift from internal to external, or virtual, teams poses three significant challenges.