Consideration of downstream functions in New Product Development
Sammanfattning: In recent years, customers demand for new products has increased in line with a rapid technological change. This has put pressure on industrial companies regarding New Product Development (NPD) in order to continuously develop and produce products at or above the customers’ expectations. Furthermore, products need to be profitable throughout the whole product lifecycle.In order to consider the whole product lifecycle in NPD, inputs with information, as well as, involvement from/of downstream functions are considered as two critical factors to ensure that profitable products are developed. Information from other functions with a wide range of perspectives, knowledge and experiences from previous products are vital.This thesis uses the above mentioned notion while examining a large multinational company, Company X. Product Development in the Company X Group follows the Gateway process which was released group-wide in 2009. This process consists of gateways which cannot be passed if not all requirements are satisfied in each step. This ensures that all areas are covered and that products are developed in an effective matter.Interviews, observations and archive analysis are methods utilized to define the current state at CXDY. The current workways and processes are compared to the outspoken ones by the company. Also, the workways and processes are compared to the theory of project management, product development, Design for X methodology and management of knowledge. In the analysis, gaps are identified and the authors present their solutions to improve the NPD process at the Company XThe major findings in the proposed solution were a new approach of the Gateway process that; takes the Internal Customer into consideration, has clear definitions of roles and responsibilities and has a cross-functional team that represent the Internal Customer in order to encourage concurrent engineering.Due to confidentiality reasons some parts of this report are hidden.Keywords: New product development, Project management, Product Lifecycle, Concurrent engineering, Design for X, Management of knowledge.
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