Best Practices for Unlocking the Power of Patent Alerts

Best Practices for Unlocking the Power of Patent Alerts

What is patent monitoring or alerting? And what is the key to a successful alerting process? In this article, Ronen Speyer describes three elements of effective patent alerts.

Ronen Speyer is a senior account director at Evalueserve, working with clients throughout Europe and across all sectors to build intelligent solutions that meet client needs across IP, R&D and Innovation teams.

He is also a technology evangelist, helping drive the growth of Evalueserve’s cutting-edge digital platforms – drawing on extensive professional services and IP experience.

What is patent monitoring or alerting?

Patent monitoring or alerting is the process of identifying patents, literature, news articles, product launch information and other new information types to inform R&D and business decisions. Alerts can focus on a specific type of technology or monitor core competitors’ activities and more.

When done correctly, patent monitoring delivers timely and accurate awareness for researchers, engineers, and the R&D community. Effective patent alerts can help identify critical patents, guide ideation, creativity, innovation and help a company react to new market developments and/ or prepare for acquisition, licensing, or partnership.

When done incorrectly, patent monitoring is a huge waste of money. Gaining access to monitoring processes and databases – in the hope that they might deliver value – is expensive. The reality is that companies often go through the motions of patent watches with little compliance to their business priorities, and a limited understanding of the real power it holds.

Elements of Effective Patent Alerts

The key to a successful alerting process depends on three essential interlinked elements that apply to any alert and use case. Together these three elements form what we call the Alert Quality Index (AQI):


Recall refers to the number of relevant patents or non-patent literature sources that the alert process identifies. Ideally, alerts should capture all relevant information. Low recall means that we will miss critical documents, resulting in low quality insights. This often leads stakeholders to question the value of the alerting.


Precision is the acceptable level of ‘noise’ versus the actual ‘noise’ in the search results. High precision must be balanced with the desired recall. We need to capture all key documents while keeping results to a manageable number for reviewers. This balance is vital but can be hard to achieve. We often see companies fall to one side or the other, inevitably leading to low internal compliance or limited insights.


Insights  Once you have established high recall with the desired level of precision, you can use the information to derive insights beyond the initial use case of the alert. For example, we can capture a list of patents for post-grant opposition, as well as updated competitive intelligence and technology landscapes. These insights become a searchable central repository for the company’s technology universe.

Capturing the optimal AQI data set is just the first step. To unlock the full potential of an effective alerting system, we need to deliver insights that resonate with stakeholders across the organization.

The best way to achieve this is by tagging the documents against a pre-agreed custom taxonomy. If we capture and tag information periodically (according to the alert frequency), maintaining the same criteria and taxonomy, we create a valuable resource: a highly-relevant, enriched data repository that allows reviewers to derive insights that answer numerous business questions.

A unified taxonomy that resonates across your business becomes a powerful tool. It can answer the primary question of the alert (for example: opposition purposes), but also can derive additional insights such as competitive intelligence and technology trends.

Putting it all together

With an effective AQI and a systematic tagging process in place, alerts will become less onerous and offer more insights to stakeholders. By saving alerts, you gain a valuable business resource. The ability to track who receives certain documents and ensure they are reviewed and commented on in a timely fashion also provides a compliance element. If you achieve this, you will have unlocked the power of alerting for your organization.

We hope you will join us virtually at IP Service World and see our video about the value of good patent monitoring via IPSW’s platform on November 24th at 2:15pm CET.  Contact us or follow our IPR&D Information Adventurers Blog for more insights.

Evalueserve is the largest IP and R&D service provider, offering a unique approach to quality patent searching, patent analytics and innovation intelligence. Our Search and Intelligence quality index is the first to determine search quality. We also offer industrialized, high volume digital patent drafting, prosecution, IP docketing, and curated data for better insights. Our mind+machine™ approach combines human expertise and proprietary technologies for smart algorithms to simplify key tasks, control and improve output of complex analytics task and provide an advanced digital experience.

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