Choosing the best moment to launch an initiative in the field of CI
- Competitive Intelligence
When they are considering whether to launch Competitive Intelligence activity, many organizations often have doubts about the adequacy of the moment. While everyone should assess what is the best time to get started in the CI, this article offers some clues that can help reflecting on if it is or not a good time to start Competitive Intelligence activity on the organization:
Resource availability (human and economic)
Clearly, the Competitive Intelligence is an activity that consumes resources, both financial and personal. Therefore, choosing a good moment is essential for success, especially as regards to dedication. Many Competitive Intelligence projects fail because, despite investing money in appropriate tools and consulting, people involved in the project is too busy with other tasks and do not spend the necessary time. Not having economic resources should not be an obstacle, as there are cheap or even free tools in the market.
Situation of the organization
The organization’s environment, its competitive situation or the need to diversify and launch new products are factors that push up the Competitive Intelligence activity, since interest is born from needs. In these cases it is easier for the project to succeed, because the results have direct application to fill the needs of the organization.
Overlap with other initiatives
It is important to devote the necessary attention when launching the Competitive Intelligence activity in an organization. People must be trained and get used to the tool, a habit must be created, the indicators must be followed, etc. If the launch of the Competitive Intelligence matches the implementation of other processes, it can stay in the background or acceptance by the involved parties may not be sufficient.
Possibility of integrating Competitive Intelligence with other business processes
Sometimes the Competitive Intelligence is used to feed or be integrated with other organizational processes, such as idea generation, strategic thinking or market research. Like in the previous case, having a relationship between the output of the Competitive Intelligence and other processes of the organization, facilitates for the initiative to succeed.
Since, as mentioned above, the launch of an initiative in the field of Competitive Intelligence involves costs, it is recommended to look for funding programs to help implement these activities in the organization. Thus, the investment required is reduced and resources can be directed to correct other deficiencies (such as hiring more staff or releasing of their tasks to certain people).