technology scouting software explained

Technology Scouting Software Defined

Simply put, technology scouting software refers to software that allows businesses and other users to extract usable data as it pertains to any and all technology.


Search, crawl, mine, extract millions of data points.

This type of software searches, crawls the web, scrapes sites, mines data and pulls in the results to identify the overall technology landscape, what is new and emerging in the particular technology space, unique opportunities within the space, competitive intelligence, and forecasting insight, to a name a few pertinent elements.


Speeding up the time it takes to scout.

Technology scouting software speeds up the time to scout technology from the more manual process that typically exists today.

Understanding the definition of “Technology.”

To better understand what Technology Scouting Software is, we must first understand the definition of “Technology” (as it is used within the innovation space).


With the technology scouting software definition explained above, it is important to also identify the meaning of technology as it is used within the innovation industry; within organizations where innovation is a primary focus. The term “technology” is not limited to information technology.


What is meant by the term “technology?” Wikipedia describes technology as:


Technology (“science of craft”, “art, skill, cunning of hand”) is the sum of techniques, skills, methods, and processes used in the production of goods or services or in the accomplishment of objectives, such as scientific investigation. Technology can be the knowledge of techniques, processes, and the like, or it can be embedded in machines to allow for operation without detailed knowledge of their workings.

What type of data is scraped and searched?

Data may be grouped into multiple category types for collection, based on the software provider’s system. Upon exploration, those that are scouting for technology, they are looking at many channels of emerging technology data that may include:

  • Patent data
  • Conference data
  • Scientific Journal publication data
  • Grant data
  • Trademark data
  • News publication data
  • Website data
  • Product data
  • University and Research Lab published data
  • Startup data
  • Key player data
  • Competitor data

How does technology scouting software help businesses innovate?

If the software is effective, business can innovate faster. Businesses can can utilize this software for faster, better and more efficient innovation by:

Speeding up research time of the patent database landscape.

In a matter of seconds (just under 30), the software can identify, globally, all patents in a specific time frame within a specific technology space.

patent search technology scouting software

Identifying what is emerging in the technology space.

Many of the software platforms have a honeycomb cluster feature that identifies the trending terms in the technology space.

emerging trend honeycomb technology scouting software

Identify subject matter experts (SMEs).

In a few click you can identify hundreds or thousands of SMEs. The SMEs can be filtered from many categories including startups, research labs, universities, published experts from scientific journals and geographical location. You can add additional keywords to narrow your SME criteria and credentials.

sme search filters technology scouting software described

What type of businesses use technology scouting software?

Business that innovate, that’s who. Which, truly should be all businesses. If you are not innovative you will not be in business long.


Large companies know that technology scouting is imperative to survival and leading the market. They are looking at what’s happening now, what’s ahead of them, and  what their competition is doing with emerging technology. Technology scouting is typically owned by R&D departments and, as we’re seeing more often, innovation departments (with the increase in Chief Innovation Officers).


Businesses often fall short with their technology scouting. In the article, How Big Companies Should Scout New Technologies, Harvard Business Review shares…


The top five challenges to doing better with technology scouting within large companies:


  1. Connectivity to the business.
  2. Identifying what areas to scout.
  3. Time to do it.
  4. Sufficient staffing.
  5. Sufficient funding.

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