New, Core, and Non-Core R&D

Identify its distinctive value to get the most out of it

The ambition of new, core, and non-core activity analysis, and the decisions made, is to ensure that R&D and its skills benefit the company' positioning and its current and future value proposition.

Context and challenges

Identifying new, core, and non-core activities involves defining a company's current and future product and service positioning, and then focusing its efforts, resources and energy on achieving it.

However, in a market where behaviors are rapidly changing, concentrating resources can be a risky gamble; particularly if a company is lacking flexibility, rigorous methodologies, and the desire to effect the necessary changes:


  • Flexibility, to identify the distinctive features of its products and services, based on the market in question more
  • Rigor, in the analysis of functions, systems and innovations that contribute to this differentiation, then the analysis of unique “capabilities”, such as resources, processes, and priorities
  • Change, through decisions on the area of skill management and on skills that can be shared, pooled, and optimized.

We believe that the success of such initiatives is achieved through:

  • Identifying what constitutes "core", i.e. what generates differentiation and creates value, and which activities are fully controlled by the company (irrespective of whether or not they are core)
  • Considering current differentiation factors on the market, as well as forecasting future factors, to remain relevant and sustainable in the assessment of activities. This makes it possible to detect new skills and activities to be developed
  • Considering the full value chain in the target market analysis, which is essential for companies in the post-merger integration phase
  • Identifying new potential or existing markets in which non-core activities could become core (without taking advantage of the subsequent make/buy/team approach), particularly when carving out and separating activities
  • Considering new methods of innovation and development (incubators, intrapreneurship, etc.) in scenarios that aim to optimize the company's development efforts
  • Being able, when implementing the transformation, to clarify in detail partnership arrangements and the areas of technical responsibility and specific interfaces in the development processes.

How can Argon Consulting help you?

  • Defining the positioning of the company and new, core and non-core activities in R&D and product development
  • Studying the scenarios for the development and optimization of the company's capabilities (resources/processes/priorities) and skills in relation to its strategy and constraints. This study could be coupled with a make/buy/team study
  • Elaborating the transformation program and supporting its implementation on the ground and in the development of products/services.



Case Studies

Deployment of a standard design-to-cost approach in an international group
Management and acceleration of an innovation program
Comprehensive restructuring of R&D processes – skills transfer