Periodic Reporting for period 1 - KAM2SouthPL2 (‘Key account management’ for the SME Instrument beneficiaries and ‘Enhancing SME innovation management capacity’ as new proinnovative services for SMEs in the regions of Southern Poland)
Reporting period: 2015-01-01 to 2016-12-31
Lack of capacity in innovation management was recognized as an important barrier in the process of creating economic impact on innovation activities in SMEs. According to the SME Performance Review 2013, the crucial area (skills, innovation and exploiting potential of foreign markets) of the Polish SMEs were chronically underperforming what reflected in Poland’s position on the Innovation Scoreboard 2014. The project was addressed to the specific challenge and the scope of the topic, as set in the work programme, and has foreseen offering mentoring and coaching services to beneficiaries who needed the support in the innovative development, including elaborating strategy of innovation. This project provided high quality innovation support services for SMEs where these were absent or unaffordable on the local markets. The project aimed to support projects with an European dimension that would lead to radical changes in how business (product, processes, services, marketing etc.) is done.
The general objective of the project was to contribute to smart growth of four Southern regions of Poland by increasing the efficiency and effectiveness of investments in research, development, innovation and by contributing to a better and more efficient connection of links along the innovation chain and by this – to contribute to the smart growth of the European Union.
WP1 Key Account Management services for the beneficiaries of the SMEs Instrument
The work was performed according to the steps as follows (as planned in DoA):
1) step 1: Assessment of gaps/needs and identification of the coach,
2) step 2: Facilitating the introduction and the assignment of the coach to the client,
3) step 3: Facilitating interaction between company and coach/coach-company relation management through maintained informal contacts to discuss progress,
4) step 4: Closing coaching case, initiating next steps to gain client’s feedback on the support they received and calculate and agree on the outcomes initiated by the coach, the coaching assignment is completed by the client signing off the coach’s final report.
28 KAM services were planned to be realised in 2015-2016 by consortium members. 12 services were initiated but 7 were completed within 2015 and 2016 for companies representing smart specialisations of respective regions: ICT, health, sustainable energy. 3 services were delivered in 2015 and 9 in 2016. 5 services were started in 2016 but not completed yet. Consortium partners expect to deliver these services in 2017.
WP2 Enhancing Innovation Management Capacity for innovating SMEs
For each service partners realised activities within 4 main steps:
1) Step 1: Assessment of SME Innovation Management Capacity
2) Step 2: Development of an Action Plan
3) Step 3: Implementation of Actions to tackle Innovation Gaps
4) Step 4: Final Report and initiation of next steps.
139 EIMC services were planned to be realised in 2015-2016 by consortium members. 91 services were provided to regional SMEs representing smart specialisations of respective regions: ICT, production of metal products and machine industry, construction industry, water supply and waste management, green growth, agro-food, sustainable energy. 28 services were delivered in 2015 and 63 in 2016. 8 services were started in 2016 but not completed yet. Consortium partners expect to deliver these services in 2017. The diagnostic tool used for the service delivery was IMP3rove.
The main impact on clients who got KAM and EIMC services was the improvement of innovation management capacity, better understanding of innovation management, preparation of written innovation management strategy, engagement of employers in realisation of innovative ideas, cooperation with new partners like universities, R&D centres and external experts, preparation of applications to SME Instrument phase I and II. Moreover the improvement of the visibility of the Network and its specialisation in the field of innovation support for companies was observed. The consequence of action taken for companies is already or is expected to be the increase in turnover, creation of new jobs, and more invisible and competitive position on the market.
As the consequence of IMP3rove assessment 14 companies prepared application for SME Instrument calls in 2015 and 2016. 6 of them were awarded with grant, 2 gained Seal of Excellence.
A huge number of beneficiaries of EIMC service prepared application for innovative projects within national calls within Intelligent Growth Operational Programme and Regional Programmes.
2 ASOs were reported within COSME project: SME Instrument phase 1 grant as the effect of the EEN support 19 Nov 2015 Zakład Urządzeń Kotłowych Stąporków S.A (SIPH P06) and 25 Nov 2015 Fineus Przewrocki Sp. J with FunBrush Project (PK P02).
Also 2 success stories were submitted (Zakład Urządzeń Kotłowych Stąporków S.A by SIPH P06 and Fineus with Funbrush by PK P02, 2016) related to successful support in applying to the SME Instrument.