While new products may be unique, the methodologies and activities involved in developing them are often repeatable and can be automated. The tasks and processes required to develop products and services can be standardized and made actionable while allowing creativity to take place within the framework.
Product Development Stages
Obviously, the stages vary greatly depending on the size of the organization, the type of product (incremental, breakthrough, etc.), and the products being developed. Some processes may have 7 stages, others may have dozens. The new product development process is unique to every organization. However, many of the stages are common.
For instance, for a manufactured product the process might look something like this:
Authorization (Often an interdisciplinary management team)
Ramp Up and Preparation
Automating the Product Development Process
Using a workflow automation tool, each phase of development is broken down into the tasks that need to be performed. These tasks are laid out visually to represent the entire process from beginning to end, in the order they need to be performed. The tasks are then assigned to individuals or product teams, who can see the overall progress of the project, previous steps, and what comes next. They can also receive notifications and reminders at the negotiated intervals to keep work flowing forward.
Benefits of Automation
Automation can not only provide speed and improved quality in the product development process, it also provides a framework for both creatives and engineers to focus on their work, rather than the process. Let's take a look at all the benefits.
Reduce Time to Market: Streamlined process, reduced redundancy, reduced administration time, clearer communication.