If the manufacturers want to maintain their business in the highly competitive environment, they themselves must obtain certain competitive advantages. At this point, given the abilities and resources owned by each manufacturer, the managers are able to develop appropriate strategies to meet consumers’ needs. “Innovation” is one of the strategies highly advocated by many manufacturers in recent years. However, innovation itself is full of uncertainties which are affected not only by the techniques, but also by many contradictions. As a result, it is necessary to analyze the contradictions of the innovation and solve the consequent problems. There are many kinds of problems happening during innovation activities. First, in order to provide projects unique than others, the manufacturers have to spend more time on innovation relatively. Second, when taking the cost into account, they usually have to make a decision between quality and price. Third, the manufacturers frequently face many choices during innovation activities. These examples above are the contradictions frequently happening within innovation.
The main purpose of this study is to build a matrix of contradiction in innovation activities by means of TRIZ theory in order to help manufacturers use the principles of innovation to solve problems. The three main purposes of the study are:
1. To investigate the bottlenecks, problems, and contradictions within the innovation activities,
2. To build a new mold for innovation through applying TRIZ methods and explaining the phenomenon of innovation contradiction,
3. And to conduct case investigations to explore the application of TRIZ to solve the problems of innovation contradiction.
The study population is Taiwan screw manufacturers, and TRIZ approach is used to analyze the case investigations. Over the period of time, the screw manufacturers have many innovation activities in order to exist continuously, but under a series of innovation activities, contradictions also happen. The study expects that the research will provide a reference for manufacturers when developing innovation strategies. The author interviewed ten experts and expected that this will allow manufacturers to be able to plan a thorough series of solution which can deal with the problems happening during innovation activities. There are 21 attributes in the matrix of contradiction which is derived from the bottlenecks, problems, contradictions, and 40 innovation principles of TRIZ while conducting innovation activities. The 21 attributes are applied to build the matrix of contradiction for the manufacturers. In addition, by means of exploring each case investigation through the attributes of the innovation contradiction matrix, the author realized that most of the manufacturers face certain kinds of bottlenecks, problems, and contradictions while doing innovation activities.
The study receives following results.
1. The 21 attributes from innovation contradiction show that innovation is really crucial to manufacturers under current business situation. However, manufacturers encounter many bottlenecks and problems during innovation activities. The matrix of contradiction built by the study is able to explore the conflict of the innovation. It is also able to provide suggestions and solutions for the process of dealing with problems.
2. By applying innovation contradiction attributes to analyze case investigations and exploring screw manufactures’ innovation activities, the study receives the unchanged and desired attributes and provides feasible solutions based on the matrix of contradiction.