4 June 2018
The EPO has for the seventh consecutive time been ranked number one among the world's five largest patent offices by users for the quality of its patents and services in Intellectual Asset Management (IAM) Magazine's latest annual benchmarking survey. With nearly 900 responses, mainly from IP professionals in senior positions, the 2018 IAM survey, published in the July/August issue of the magazine, is the largest carried out to date.
"One thing that can be relied upon is the IP community's confidence in the quality of patents issued by the European Patent Office," IAM Magazine writes. "[...] the EPO continues to garner by far the best approval ratings of any patent office from IAM's readers."
This year's survey includes responses from professionals working in IP-owning businesses and those in private practice, representing the two largest groups of IP professionals. These two user groups were asked about the EPO, Japan Patent Office (JPO), Korean Intellectual Property Office (KIPO), US Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) and the State Intellectual Property Office of the People's Republic of China (SIPO).
The results of this year's survey have reconfirmed the EPO's position as a global leader in quality: In 2018, a significantly higher proportion of respondents again regarded the quality of the patents granted by the EPO as "excellent", "very good" or "good" than for any other office listed. Of those that provided a response, 91% of corporate respondents and 93% of private practitioners regarded the quality of patents issued by the EPO as excellent, very good or good. Furthermore, when asked how they perceived patent quality had changed in the past year, 17% of corporates who responded and 20% of private practitioners responding said the EPO had improved, both figures up from last year. When asked about the EPO's services, 80% of corporate professionals and 88% of private practitioners responding rated them as excellent, very good or good.
"At the EPO we consider quality our number one priority and we have pursued a dedicated quality management strategy in recent years to further improve quality standards and processes, address user feedback and provide even more legal certainty. We are very pleased that these efforts have been confirmed once again by our users in this independent survey," said EPO President Benoît Battistelli. "This past year we have redoubled our efforts and managed to improve our quality even further."
The EPO has received top marks for quality and service in each of the seven surveys that IAM has published since 2010. The next edition of the Office's own dedicated Quality Report will be published later this month.