Making innovation go further in metals: How companies could gain by widening their innovation focus

Much of the innovation effort in the metals sector is limited to product or process innovation with less priority given to wider innovation. This report looks at how metals companies are faring in their innovation strategies, puts this in the context of the sector and other sectors, before examining how companies could gain by widening their innovation focus.

There is general satisfaction among metals companies executives about the priority they are giving to innovation and the success of their innovation strategies. And they recognise the importance of many of the internal building blocks. But is such satisfaction well-placed or do companies need to reassess where their innovation strategies are heading?

One benchmark to measure this is to compare how metals companies in our survey are performing in comparison with companies in the wider survey. The most innovative companies across all sectors are predicting growth of 62.2% over the next five years. In contrast, metals executives anticipate growth of 22.3%, only a little above the 20.7% growth projected by companies identified as ‘least innovative’ and well below the 35.4% average across all sectors.