Retooled Product Development Process For Embedded Software Company
Designed cohesive market driven planning cycle that drove industry segment requirements across all product categories.
The client had determined that R&D as a percent of sales was too high and wanted to improve their ROI through higher sales while keeping R&D dollars constant. The client wanted to improve coordination of product features across multiple verticals and improve overall product lifecycle management from product design to end-of-life. This was particularly challenging because different segments had different R&D lifecycles creating multiple track product development schedules for individual lines of business. The company lacked an end of life strategy which caused SKU proliferation and higher costs for marketing operations, sales and service.
Vision & Execution interviewed key stakeholders across the company to identify gaps in performance related to the product development lifecycle. Numerous weak links were identified that caused an extended product lifecycle and customer dissatisfaction. Moreover the process for identifying disruptive new opportunities did not exist and the company had slipped into a process that focused almost exclusively on incremental improvements. Vision & Execution developed a market and financially driven process for prioritizing new markets, products and features. Additionally, Vision & Execution customized market and product requirements templates and created a financial model to enable a consistent approach to sizing and describing market opportunities.
The process and tools that Vision & Execution implemented helped the client ensure that R&D resources were focused on building the right products based on future demand. R&D costs for new products and product enhancements were lowered and unprofitable products were retired.