Article: article from journal or magazin.
Data-based learning in product development
Scandinavian Journal of Management
In an operational situation companies both deliver and develop products, with continuous demands for shorter cycle times. This increases the importance of learning. It is argued here that companies do not fully exploit their experience from previous projects. The same mistakes tend to occur from project to project. Yet it is shown with the help of empirical evidence, from five product development projects, that by introducing simple managerial principles which activate organisational learning, companies can improve their efficiency. It is also argued that modern and interactive communication tools provide a means for managing and acquiring a better understanding of physically dispersed product development and manufacturing operations. It is concluded that by establishing clear documentation protocols to track the evolution of the product during its life cycle and by exploiting the modern communication media to implement simple managerial principles, project management can master the dispersed multi-project environment of today's manufacturing companies better. At its best, organisational learning can be a continuous and self-feeding process catalysed by advanced on-line metrics visualising the product development process.
Configuration management, learning, new-product development, concurrent engineering, project management, computer-supported collaboration
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