The design and development phase is about taking your ideas from your initial planning and research phase, be it 'basic or advanced' and applying these into the production of either process or product. Fundamentally it is about translating your research in to a commercial product or service. It often will involve design, prototypes, trials, testing and refinement.

R&D can be set to look at different outcomes as follows:

New product research and development

R&D and product development often go hand in hand, rapid changes in consumer demands and emerging technologies creates a drive and need to adapt. Before adaptation and the development of new products or services, businesses need a deeper understanding of the market and end user requirements.

Improving existing products and processes

The continued evaluation of existing products, services and processes is a key part of R&D. If a product, service or process is no longer profitable or adding value in any market then it risks stagnating or becoming loss making.

It could also be that technology has been developed that could help facilitate improvements that may cut costs/overheads, making efficiency gains or even improve safety. This can include improvements to the manufacturing and production processes of a product.

Legislative changes and shifts in user needs/requirements can also mean a product or process must change or evolve to remain viable. One prime example of this is GDPR and the data storage and unification requirements the legislation brought forth.