Product Development Process in a Complex System

The product development process describes the workflow from the idea of a new product to its manufacture and sale. This term is based on the idea of managing business processes and is mainly used in the automotive industry. Basic and applied research precedes the product development process.

Product Development Process in a Complex System

Phases in the Product Development Process

Sub-processes or phases in the product development process can be understood in different ways. All explanatory approaches assume that the product creation process in the broader sense is divided into at least two sub-processes for product development: production planning and production.

3-stroke model in the Product Development Process

Based on the advanced Product Development Process, the Product Development Process can be divided into three stages, which in turn can be repeated several times in cycles. The first phase is called strategic product planning and serves to identify promising product concepts. Promising processes are thus technically feasible, cost-effective and in line with the corporate strategy. Individual phases can work in parallel.

The second sub-process includes the actual product development. The specific design is developed on the basis of the concept and supplemented by electronic components and software as required. The result is a fully functional prototype and a production concept.

In the third sub-process, the so-called process development, production planning, setting up the production infrastructure, start of mass production and finally series production takes place. This is where the production stages are defined and the necessary production equipment is provided and prepared for production.

Planning in the Product Development Process - phases and actions of the Product Life Cycle

Due to the constantly growing complexity of the product, the requirements for modern product manufacturing processes are also changing. The product manufacturing process essentially comprises all phases from the idea and definition of a product to its production and sale. Initially, the development of products plays an important role. This includes product planning, design, change and claims management. The Product Development Process must meet the growing demands on quality and costs. Creating a product is not an unchanging process.

Organization in the Product Development Process

Product manufacturing starts with the basic methods, research results and ideas of engineers and technicians. This shows that development must be systematic and take place in a clearly structured sequence of processes in order to sell products successfully on the market. The product creation process can be divided into product planning and product development. At the beginning of the development process, many companies carry out an intensive analysis of product planning about technical trends, market and customer requirements and product placement on the markets. This leads to specifications and product definitions that must be specified during the development phase. Before products are launched on the market, intensive tests are carried out with prototypes, at least for series products. Continuous improvements are made in the production process, taking into account market and production experience. Individual phases are now being processed.

Research in Product Lifecycle Management

Not all companies conduct their own research. Nevertheless, all companies are interested in using new knowledge from their own research or from research in government research institutes. Research is therefore not aimed at individual products, but rather at the technical basis and knowledge about the use of products that contribute to the development of the technology. The technical research areas include in particular materials research, the fundamentals of electrical engineering, electronics and information technology, and to a large extent construction and production technologies.

The Product Development Process has changed in recent years, especially due to the increase in product complexity and the complexity of the process. An important result of this change is a reduction of the technical / creative part of engineering. In order to counteract this trend, IT solutions - especially with the help of software - optimize the product creation process. The main focus of the requirements is to support intercompany design, the extension of virtualization and process integration. Modern IT solutions for the product creation process must be multidisciplinary, integrative and federalist.

The Product Development Process as part of the product lifecycle

The Product Life Cycle is the main process of industrial companies. An important factor here is an increasingly holistic view that spans the entire product life cycle and removes the narrow boundaries between the various phases, departments and IT solutions that still exist today. The product lifecycle includes the complete planning and development of products and associated resources, production and assembly processes, their manufacture and their use, operation and processing.

Product Development Process and Product Lifecycle Management

The Product Development Process describes the process of creating a product from an idea to series production. In fact, the product creation process can be divided into six stages: The Idea Phase, the Product Definition Phase, the Concept Development Phase, the Product Development Phase, the Launch Phase and Mass Production. In combination with targeted Product Lifecycle Management (PLM), known as project and development management, clear processes and responsibility for procedures ensure that quality targets are met.

Change requests occur during the entire product lifecycle, but especially during the product development process. Change management includes the targeted monitoring and implementation of change requests. For effective processing, the scope and effects of changes must first be recorded and evaluated before the necessary change processes can be initiated. Effective change management requires the appropriate structures, processes and responsibilities within the company.

Product Data Management (PDM) comprises the systematic storage and administration of product data in a company. Mainly used product data management systems that allow you to manage product data throughout the entire product lifecycle with Product Lifecycle Management. In addition to displaying product master data, these PLM systems also offer various options for version control and document validation, such as digital engineering drawings or production plans.

The aim of variant management in the product development process is to control and optimize a growing product variety. Basically two principles are applied: Reducing the complexity that can be avoided and mastering the required complexity. The thin and transparent selection of options not only reduces procurement and production costs, but also aligns product configurations with market characteristics. Successful management of options is therefore always geared to the needs of customers and the market.

Appropriate software enables simultaneous design and digital planning tools in the product lifecycle. Simultaneous design describes the early cooperation between development and production in order to reduce the number of iterative cycles in the creation of a product and thus lower costs. Taking into account the batch process, the product, the serial resources and the layout, those responsible guarantee that the maximum possible number of steps is parallelized. The use of digital planning tools and software-based planning methods also reduces the number of necessary corrective actions during planning and therefore shortens the planning process.

The implemented workflow guides all those involved in the process to the right time during the development of a specific product. The assignment of tasks to the process steps defined by you is based on a jointly developed role concept.