Streamline your IP management

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Managing the day to day running of a sizeable IP portfolio can be time consuming. However, streamlining the process, will save you time and money. Here are some key tips to manage your IP portfolio more efficiently.

Meet frequently with your IP attorney

By scheduling recurring meetings, you will remove the pressure to keep on top of every email that hits your inbox. Lower priority matters can be delayed until the next meeting without weighing on your mind or conversely, being forgotten.

Regular check-ins will help you to accurately keep track of budgets and gain prior approval for spending if required. Having your IP attorney more involved helps them to understand your business better and results in a stronger relationship where you can really work as a team.

Keep track of everything in one place

Try to use shared documents instead of emails where possible. Create a master document with a list of active matters to help keep meetings on track and ensure all the necessary parties have access to the essential information.

Put a watch service in place

A watch service allows businesses to keep track of competitors and monitor similar trade marks and patents filed around the world. Having your IP attorney manage this significantly cuts down the time commitment you will need to make, as there are often a considerable number of irrelevant results that must be identified and discarded. Regularly discussing the results of the watch service helps you and your IP attorney to build up an understanding of one another’s approach to disputes and your threshold for action.

Billing tailored to your business

You don’t want to waste time keeping track of budgets, so talk to your IP attorney about a schedule that works for you. Arranging a monthly retainer can give certainty and control of your spending. Invoices may be able to be broken down, consolidated or presented as required by your accounts team.

Educate the wider team

As well as assisting the legal team, IP experts are a great resource for educating the wider business. From the marketing department to the board, different areas of the business have a different understanding of IP and it’s helpful to have an external educator at times. For example, the marketing team has a significant influence on the legal budget for trade mark matters, so they must be educated on the importance and limitations of protecting a brand.