While most companies used to rely solely on their in-house research and development teams to create new products and improve upon existing ones, that is no longer the case. Around 70% of companies now outsource some elements of their R&D work, and many view their external partners as just as necessary as their internal ones when it comes to innovation. There are several reasons for this shift. Firstly, it can be costly to maintain a large R&D team, and outsourcing can help to save money. Secondly, companies can access expertise and resources that they might not have internally by working with specialist firms. Finally, partnering with other organizations can help to accelerate the product development process, as multiple teams can work on different aspects of a project simultaneously. As the role of outsourcing in R&D continues to grow, it is clear that most companies now see their external partners as essential pieces of their innovation puzzle.