On July, 22, 2014 the European Union presented the new pilot action called “Fast Track innovation”. This program is aimed to support all any king of business which is open for the implementation of innovations and new applications. The companies that have brilliant innovation ideas which will help to develop the business have the possibility to submit their proposals in order to win the grants and find the companies to work with. The submission period starts on January 6th, 2015 and lasts till December 1st 2015.
Be open for innovation
Nowadays, all the companies should be open for innovation and, moreover, they should strive for it, otherwise they will become outdated and lose their attractiveness for the customers as well as their competitive advantage. Innovations in technology help the company to be more efficient, productive and profitable. It also improves and fastens the processes and, in the majority of cases, saves money for the enterprise. Innovative products and services will boost the sales of the company and will help it to become the leader and the trend-setter of the market. Modern consumers are spoiled by the wide range of goods and it’s quite hard to persuade them to buy your product instead of the one of your competitor. Innovative products always stand out and motivate the sales.
SMEs in Europe
According to the data from the list of publications called ‘SMEs in Europe – competitiveness, innovation and the knowledge-driven society’, small and medium production companies of the countries of the European Union are more open to innovations than big ones. The research has shown that the companies, which provide services, are less disposed to innovations. The lowest share of innovation-active SME was found in Belgium (13%) and the biggest one – in Ireland (60%). At the same time, if we compare the cost of innovation with the company’s turnover, we will have a completely different picture. Small production companies spent a much bigger share of income on innovation, than the big ones. Thus, small companies invested around 5,1% of their income into the innovations while the big ones spent only 4,7%. The figures are even more polar in the sphere of services, where small enterprises invested 10,2% of their turnover and big ones – 3,1%. The share of companies, that use R&D in their business is quite low all over Europe and varies from 6% in Luxemburg up to 57% in Finland, which is not that much. This fact should be considered as an area for improvement, especially taking into account the fact, that the Europen Union has created a special program to support innovation and SME should take advantage of it.
SMEs and consumers
So, it goes without saying that innovations are crucial for modern business, as they make it more competitive, efficient, profitable and productive. Innovations drive sales and keep all the companies “fit”, as they have to meet a high level of quality and newness in order to maintain their attractiveness for the consumers.