Recently we came across a very novel and innovative chocolatier who was certainly pushing boundaries in the use of the material he loved. He was looking to develop a series of chocolate products which could withstand heat including the creation of a chocolate teapot able to withstand near boiling water.
Like every valid claim he was seeking to overcome “technological uncertainty”.
When he originally sat down with the team they were “competent professionals” having trained for many years. There was no obvious way to achieve their goal so they were involved in outlining possible solutions including changing the basic recipe or formula to coating the interior of the product with an edible barrier resistant to the heat.
There were many failed approaches before they were able to achieve their goal and was by the application of a novel scientific approach to raise the melting point of chocolate
Meanwhile an aeronautical engineer working on a new generation of aircraft able to reduce fuel consumption and so remain on station for longer was grappling with getting more range for the same amount of fuel consumed
Despite their widely different areas of expertise they did in fact have a lot in common:
- First of all they were competent professionals in their field
- The work was being undertaken by a UK limited company and at that company’s own expense
- They both faced “technological uncertainty “to which there was not a known or obvious solution
- They both were involved in “head scratching” to try and work out a solution
- They both had a number of failed approaches before they were able to achieve their goals
- Both their companies went on to make successful claims under the scheme.
So if you are wondering whether your work meets the criteria of the scheme here are our five simple questions:
- Is your business a UK limited company?
- Have you, or are you developing your own products?
- Do you believe your company is innovating or trying to improve on what is currently available?
- Have you developed those products at your own expense?
And Finally a more complicated question
- When you were undertaking the development of your product did you have” to overcome technological uncertainties?” Was the work challenging and did it take the team several attempts to achieve the objective?
To help explain what we mean, we would ask the question - "did you know exactly what you need to do, or did the solution require “some head scratching?” "Did the product or process require that the team whiteboard the solution and revise their original thoughts at any time?"
If the development team didn’t know exactly how they might overcome the technical difficulties then there is something worth talking about.
Lastly, What type of work may qualify?
- Design Work
- Software Development
- Improving internal processes
- Combining technologies in an original way
We hope this helps you, but once more if you have any questions then don't hesitate to call us on 0207 743 6504 or press the button below to send us an email.