New Product Development Process Goes Global : A qualitative study of rethinking traditional concepts
We live in a time of globalization. People and events of one country often impact other countries. The term “globalization” became one of the main characteristics of today‟s world. Countries perceive themselves not only as separate nations but also as parts of the global world. On other hand, new product development field is a complex process that is vital for companies‟ growth and success. Today, in terms of globalization, success of the product can be judged by its performance on the global market. Reduction of trade barriers and duty, development of new technologies and communication channels and other factors cause a trend towards development of the global market. In such conditions, a challenging task of new product development becomes even more challenging. It transforms into a new process that aims to take advantages of global opportunities and increase efficiency and effectiveness of new products.The new product development theory is quite a researched field. Numerous studies were conducted in the field of global strategies as well. These two concepts, however, were always investigated separately and just little research has been conducted about the joint topic. There are no studies that analyze the new product development process in global companies. Brentani, Kleinschmidt and Salomo (2010) argue though that global company strategy, corporate global culture and global innovation strategy affects the new product development process that is conducted by global companies. Thus we can find a research gap in contemporary literature that studies the global development process in global companies. Thereby the purpose of the current research is to investigate and integrate diverse knowledge about this process and global company strategy. It contributes to the contemporary knowledge about the new product development process by adding global perspective to this concept. Moreover, the current study can provide a framework for companies that can be considered during the process of development of new products for the global market.Our research, therefore, aims to answer the research question: How is the new product development (NPD) process run in global companies: what are the differences with the traditional NPD model and by whom and how is this process managed?By conduction of qualitative interviews and content analysis of gathered data, the new product development process was investigated in three global companies. Further, relevant theories about new product development and global company strategy and gathered data were analyzed together. Based on this comprehensive analysis a new improved model was suggested for the new product development process in global companies. Besides this, managerial issues of this process were investigated as well and some propositions were developed.
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