یکپارچه سازی مسیر نمای تکنولوژی و مدیریت پرتفولیو در بخش جلویی از توسعه محصول جدید
|کد مقاله||سال انتشار||تعداد صفحات مقاله انگلیسی||ترجمه فارسی|
|21905||2010||16 صفحه PDF||سفارش دهید|
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Publisher : Elsevier - Science Direct (الزویر - ساینس دایرکت)
Journal : Technological Forecasting and Social Change, Volume 77, Issue 8, October 2010, Pages 1339–1354
Many authors point out that the front-end of new product development (NPD) is a critical success factor in the NPD process and that numerous companies face difficulties in carrying it out appropriately. Therefore, it is important to develop new theories and proposals that support the effective implementation of this earliest phase of NPD. This paper presents a new method to support the development of front-end activities based on integrating technology roadmapping (TRM) and project portfolio management (PPM). This new method, called the ITP Method, was implemented at a small Brazilian high-tech company in the nanotechnology industry to explore the integration proposal. The case study demonstrated that the ITP Method provides a systematic procedure for the fuzzy front-end and integrates innovation perspectives into a single roadmap, which allows for a better alignment of business efforts and communication of product innovation goals. Furthermore, the results indicated that the method may also improve quality, functional integration and strategy alignment.
The front-end of new product development (NPD) comprises the activities that precede the formal development of new product projects. This phase defines the new products that should provide competitiveness and revenue for the business, which makes it a critical phase for NPD process performance. If a company is ineffective at this point, despite its successful technical development, there is a high probability of product failure in terms of financial, strategic or commercial expectations , , , , , , ,  and . Research on NPD process performance has shown the need for improving this initial phase , ,  and . Front-end inefficacies are related to features such as cross-functional uncertainties, multiple goals, lack of information and dynamic decisions , ,  and . Nevertheless, companies should learn how to deal with the front-end to gain a competitive advantage and to launch successful products. Among many management practices currently applied at the front-end, technology roadmapping and portfolio management have been widely adopted because of their capability of achieving effective outcomes  and . At the front-end, technology roadmapping can be used mainly for strategic planning, product planning, program planning and integration planning . Some advantages of applying TRM are integrating innovation perspectives (market, product and technology), facilitation of intraorganizational communication and long-term planning . Project portfolio management (PPM) supports the evaluation, selection, prioritization and control of the company's project portfolio. Consequently, it helps to ensure strategic alignment, maximization of project portfolio value and resource planning , facilitating the selection of the best new product concepts for the development and launch of successful products. This is one of the main front-end objectives. Since TRM and PPM have complementary features, some authors have indicated their integration as an opportunity to improve the front-end  and . This makes sense, because on the one hand the standalone application of TRM does not result in a portfolio of NPD projects and on the other hand PPM needs a list of projects as input which should be future-oriented or aligned with the company's strategy. Therefore, if PPM is applied without this orientation, i.e., as a standalone tool, it may have a limited list concerning future orientation. Consequently, the results of the front-end based on the standalone application of TRM or PPM may be ineffective for the NPD process. Nevertheless, there is little evidence of their integration. In our review of the literature we found only two studies focusing on this topic: Park and Park  and Albright and Nelson . Moreover, both propose roadmapping as an alternative to traditional portfolio management practices, i.e., for selecting and planning a portfolio of projects, rather than focusing on its complementary application. In this context, this research intends to explore the complementary features of TRM and PPM at the front-end of NPD. To achieve its aim, this paper proposes a method based on the integration of TRM and PPM. The acronym of the proposed method is the ITP Method, which stands for (I) Integrated, (T) Technology Roadmapping and (P) Portfolio Management. Using a case research methodology, this integrated method was implemented at a small Brazilian high-tech company in the nanotechnology industry with the purpose of testing the integration itself and of analyzing benefits for front-end execution. Thus, it contributes not only to the theory by analyzing how TRM and PPM would be integrated, but also to practice by developing an initial reference for companies interested in improving their application of TRM and PPM. The next section reviews the literature of the front-end of NPD, TRM and PPM to contextualize the research and clarify its theoretical backgrounds. Section 3 describes the methodology adopted in the research. Section 4 then presents the development and proposal of the ITP Method. Section 5 describes the case study and the analysis of integrated application of TRM and PPM. Finally, Section 6 concludes with a description of how the integrated application worked during the case study, giving insights regarding its contribution to front-end execution and suggesting opportunities for future research.
نتیجه گیری انگلیسی
This paper presented the ITP Method, which proposes to integrate technology roadmapping and project portfolio management during their application at the front-end of NPD. To assess its integration, the method was applied at a small high-tech company. These conclusions discuss the results of the ITP Method for the company, insights about the integrated application of TRM and PPM, and opportunities for future research. 6.1. Results of the ITP Method in the case study The assessment demonstrated that the ITP Method contributed positively to the front-end. The metrics of quality, integration of functional areas, systematization of the decision process, strategic alignment, cost, and duration were evaluated based on interviews with the participants. In general, the results showed an improvement, with the exception of the variable Duration, which increased, and the variable Cost, which remained unchanged. The changes in Duration can be attributed to the need to carry out additional activities the company did not previously engage in, but which are important for effective front-end execution. Although the duration was longer the cost remained unchanged, probably as a result of the team's increased efficiency during the activities. The results of the assessment correspond to the case study where the method was applied. This small high-tech company is an organization whose hierarchical levels are very similar and whose functional areas are more integrated than in other types of organization. This likely contributed to the positive changes in the variables assessed, since it enabled employees with a holistic business vision to be gathered in a single team. The results of the case study are based on a specific case involving nanotechnology products. Therefore, the application of the ITP Method to other types of industrialized products may bring insights that differ from those identified here. Together with the issues related to organization and product type, the company's initial situation in the front-end may limit the generalization of the research results. According to the first researcher's assessment, the company was ineffective, lacked a proper procedure, and did not use suitable methods and tools. However, since there are many small high-tech companies that face the same issues, the results achieved in this research have a potential for further exploration. For instance, the technological region where Nanox is located contains many other companies in which this study could be applied along the same lines. However, it should be kept in mind that the results presented here come from a single case study and therefore cannot be generalized. This study considered technology planning only superficially, reflecting the front-end model which was adopted, i.e., Crawford and Di Benedetto . This model uses technology information, but its purpose is not to plan the development or acquisition of new technologies for new products. Moreover, the goal of the small high-tech company of this research was to develop new products using its available technologies, i.e., its current product strategy was based on the technology-push strategy. Therefore, this research did not cover issues related to new technology planning, which would be clearer in a market-pull strategy in which the market would drive the development of new products and technologies. Technology roadmapping is known for its potential to contribute to new technology planning. Thus, the case study did not fully exploit the possible benefits of the ITP Method. Furthermore, its use in new technology planning would be more suitable for the front-end of the innovation process, which involves new product development and new technology development processes . 6.2. Insights about the integrated application of TRM and PPM This research confirms that the integrated application of TRM and PPM may be more advantageous than a standalone application. The main findings of this research that support these conclusions are: • Integrating TRM and PPM according to Crawford and Di Benedetto's  model contributes to align NPD teams with front-end goals. • The integration enables a holistic understanding of the activities, tools and information from the beginning to the end of the front-end. This facilitates the execution of activities and improves quality since it reduces possible misunderstandings. • The process becomes more efficient in terms of information exchange and communication, since the TRM and PPM are conceptually integrated. Otherwise, it would be cumbersome to integrate the results of the two methods in an independent application. The ITP Method represents a specific configuration of TRM and PPM application. First of all, TRM was used to identify new product opportunities. Afterwards, PPM was used to evaluate and select the NPD projects. Finally, TRM was applied again to create a graphic visualization of the selected portfolio, serving to support the strategic alignment. Since the TRM and PPM are flexible approaches, it may be possible to integrate them in different configurations. For instance, TRM could be applied after PPM in order to analyze interrelationships among NPD projects. In addition, opportunities for product platforms could be identified considering resources and technical constraints. The findings of this research revealed the need to integrate other methods to complement the requirements of the front-end. For instance, the scenario planning method could contribute to the forecasting of market and technology trends, which was considered a weak point in the case study. Idea management would contribute to support the definition of new product concepts based on opportunities identified from TRM. 6.3. Opportunities for future research These are the results of an initial investigation into the integrated application of TRM and PPM at the front-end of NPD. Other related issues that could be addressed to complement this research are: • Development of case studies in companies with different organizational characteristics and products. • Application of the ITP Method to support the front-end of the innovation process, where the function of technology planning is more important than in the NPD process. • Integration of idea management methods, which would contribute to concept generation, a phase supported superficially by the ITP Method. • Integration of the scenario planning method to improve the forecasting of market and technology trends.