Quality Action Plan 2024

Today, the European Patent Office (EPO) published its annual Quality Action Plan for the first time.

Our Quality Action Plan 2024 defines targeted actions to improve further the quality of our products and services at every stage of the patent granting process (PGP), strengthen dialogue with our users and enhance learning from Boards of Appeal (BoA) outcomes.

Building on the feedback of users, the actions include workshop sessions in the framework of the SACEPO Working Party on Quality (WP/Q), as well as the monitoring of third-party observations during the examination phase of the PGP. The Quality Action Plan also foresees the development of new key performance indicators (KPIs) to track the rates at which the EPO’s decisions are overturned by the BoA, as well as to drive measures that maintain legal certainty and the robustness of our examination and opposition procedures.

Building on our commitment to excellence

The publication of the plan follows the recent launch of the EPO’s new KPI dashboard, which will enhance transparency for all our stakeholders by providing regular updates on quality and user satisfaction. Our readiness to share our progress as we build on the previous years’ achievements reflects the transparency with which we channel user feedback into assessing quality at every stage of the PGP and beyond.

The plan builds upon progress made in 2023, a year in which we enhanced our approach to consistency of practice and invested in digital tools and workflows to ensure that patent applications move efficiently through the entire PGP. Further, we made our quality actions and results more accessible through the data-rich Quality Report 2022, and we deepened engagement with our users to consolidate quality standards.

Quality is a shared journey. In 2024, we will continue to take a collaborative approach in which the EPO and stakeholders engage in active, open and constructive dialogue to enhance the already high quality of the patent granting process at the EPO. By working together and drawing on our combined expertise, we can aspire to reach new heights and set new global standards in patent quality.