Innovation process and culture
At Fresenius Medical Care, each product idea undergoes a structured development process with clearly defined project phases, milestones and reporting lines. This ensures that we only pursue ideas that create added value for our patients, customers and the Company. A further factor that contributes to the success of our research and development is our open innovation culture, especially our lively professional, creative and personal exchange of ideas, both within and outside of the Company.
At the core of this culture is the vertical integration of our Company, in other words the fact that we develop, manufacture and sell dialysis products at the same time as offering dialysis treatments. Our R&D teams therefore benefit directly from the opinions and experience of patients, nurses and physicians in Fresenius Medical Care’s clinics – a significant advantage over the majority of our competitors. Our R&D employees also exchange their knowledge regularly with the technical and sales departments, for example on quality assurance and quality improvements. Annual internal conferences give R&D employees from all regions the opportunity to discuss joint projects as well as overriding issues and trends in the field of dialysis. Our employees also visit international research events where they contribute to scientific discourse. This enables them to bring back new ideas to their teams and at the same time strengthen the Company’s excellent reputation in the international professional community. Finally, we take a look at industries in fields other than dialysis: A number of our employees work primarily on analyzing new technologies in other industries to see whether they offer synergies for our development work.
Our innovation culture also means that we carry out research and development responsibly. For more information on what we mean by this, see the “Responsibility” chapter.