Henri Dou, Pierre Larrat - Communication : How competitive Intelligence can improve the development of contractors and sub-contractors.
Today most of the large industry (principal)use contractors to externalize part of their production. Contractors themselves may also use sub-contractors if they do not have the necessary skill to finalize certain products, or if they need a mass production.Most of the time, the contractors are subjects to the fluctuations of the market.They are often considered by their principal customer as the variable to absorb the market fluctuations. But, the necessity for the main companies to improve the quality of their products and to move to more high-tech products changes the relationships between contractors and principal. Many examples show that the development of innovations came from contractors even from sub-contractors because the products that they are asked are more and more sophisticated and need skills and specialization. Today the objective of a contractor is to increase its specialization and to become indispensable and then become a privileged interlocutor.. Another way for the contractor to get more independence is to diversified and to use its competences and facilities to develop new products which will be sold in a different market than their initial one. To choose between these two strategies is difficult and Competitive intelligence if well applied by the contractor may help this former to strengthen its position and to create an actionable knowledge necessary to innovate and improve its production and position.