A way to map out the various Competitive Assessment Tools and Viewpoints needed at each Stage of an R&D project is shown in the “Competitive Assessment Tools and Viewpoints” figure. What follows is a Stage by Stage review of each of these 55 tools, starting with Tools for Investigating an Idea. In this Idea stage there exist different models of how invention and innovation takes place and whether the processes can be systematically understood and improved. There are also many methodologies available from consultants which can greatly speed up and improve the quality of ideas available. Competitive assessment tools can be used in conjunction with these methodologies, and used as a support tool for independent inventors.
An Industrial Research Institute “Survey of High Performance Inventors and innovators” found that the Top Problem was it took “Too long to Invent”, and the Top Opportunity was being able to be “Asking the Right Questions”