New product development process

Most companies today are structuring their new product development process to accelerate results and control costs.

Step 1Corporate strategy and innovationA corporate plan should make provision for research and development of new ideas. The innovation will be orchestrated by senior management and will dictate the resources made available to new development.

Step 2New product ideasLots an lots of ideas are needed. After 50 new ideas maybe number 51 will be the winner. Many innovations are small improvements and line extensions and not complete breakthroughs. The team should focus on projects that are consistent with overall strategy.

New ideas can originate from:* Employees - front line people are the closest to the customer. Toyota receives 2 million suggestions per annum.* Customers - innovative customers are opinion leaders are generally willing to talk their requirements.* Research and Development - scientists play a pivotal roll in hi-tech business.* Competitors - systematic comparison of products and a search for best practice.* Distributors - They know the end user and competition which can be valuable ally.* Psychologists and market researchers - to find new gaps in the market* Outside sources - ideas are bought

Step 3ScreeningTo select the maximum available number of ideas that are compatible with the firms objectives.

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