Did you know your company’s intellectual property can include employee know-how? With the great resignation in full swing, are your patents, copyrights, and trade secrets, including employee know-how, safe? Here’s how to ensure their safety.
How can employee know-how be that important, you say? Let me tell you an actual tale about a small but successful biotech filter firm. The scientific staff at the biotech company I worked for only purchased this company’s filters.
Suddenly, the filter firm couldn’t fill our orders. The scientific staff complained the filters no longer worked after orders finally arrived. We stopped buying their filters.
The filter company failed when the only employee making filters took that knowledge with him. No one ever bothered to write down the procedure to make their excellent filters, their trade secret for a top-notch product.
There are four types of IP – patents, trademark, copyright, and trade secrets. What happens if your IP gets swiped? Likely, you will never nab the thief or get your property back.
What can a business do to keep its IP safe? The employee handling security should also handle your IP security. Along with protection under one umbrella, it’s wise to identify and locate all your IPs.
Other good ideas are identifying your most valuable IP, limiting access to it both physically and digitally, consider a data loss prevention tool, and educate your employees about guarding your IP. That’s right, a good portion of IP walks out the door by mistake. Make sure your employees don’t help it leave unintentionally.
Author: Kris Keppeler, a writer who finds technology fascinating and loves humor. She writes for Crossing Genres on Medium.com and Does This Happen to You? on Channillo. Award-winning podcast producer who enjoys telling stories. Follow her @KrisKKAria on Twitter or on LinkedIn.