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Six Sigma and improvements in the patent process at International Truck and Engine

Try this innovative approach to staffing and analysis. International Truck and Engine, facing a budget crunch, hired a contract IP lawyer and put him through the company’s Six Sigma Green Belt training. Girdled in green, he analyzed the company’s patent process. For example, they posted the patent submission form online (See my post of Feb. 16, 2006 on client self service.), offered $250 for each accurate invention submission form, according to Corp. Legal Times, Vol. 14, May 2004 at 24. That step helped reduce the time spent in the law department on preparation of patent filings by 28 percent.

Patents submitted tripled in one year and stayed there for the three years – “and the time from invention conception to submission dropped 19 percent.” Note the Six Sigma metrics and baseline (See my post of March 7, 2006 on Six Sigma Speak.)

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