Product Development Methodology for a Competitive World Market 890167

A systematic methodology for new product development is presented which utilizes team organizational structures, standardized design methods, and information access for the purpose of increasing product value and minimizing design cycle time. The new product development strategy sets the direction and guidelines. Product teams are formed between the organization developing the new product, suppliers, consultants, and customers. Central to this effort and key to its success is a system which has been designed to provide integrated design and program management tools and to facilitate vital information exchange.
IN TODAY'S ENVIRONMENT of global competition and accelerating technological advancement, companies are continuously seeking ways to maintain and, if possible, improve their overall market positions and levels of profitability. Emphasis has been placed upon manufacturing automation as a way to reduce labor content, thereby improving productivity. Automation is also playing an important role in the product design and development process through CAD and CAE. However, benefits of automation which are justified on the basis of labor productivity alone are showing signs of diminishing returns (1)*.
Vital to further improvements in manufacturing productivity and competitiveness is the reduction of throughput time (1). The reduction in time that a product spends in the manufacturing process lowers its cost and tends to have other positive impacts such as improved quality.
As a method of further enhancing product value, the concept of improved productivity through reduced throughput time can also be applied to product design and development. Through this effort, the same overall positive product impacts can be realized as with manufacturing improvements, including shorter new product lead times, better product quality, greater design flexibility, and more capital available for reinvestment in additional improvements.
In formulating a method for improving new product development, it is useful to first outline the objective and components of the product development process, identifying key areas upon which to focus for improvement. Then, it is necessary to consider methods for accomplishing the components of the product development process which enhance their efficiency and throughput capabilities.


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