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Product development in low-volume manufacturing industries: Characteristics and influencing factors
Mälardalen University, School of Innovation, Design and Engineering, Innovation and Product Realisation. (IPR)ORCID iD: 0000-0002-5364-8842
Mälardalen University, School of Innovation, Design and Engineering, Innovation and Product Realisation.ORCID iD: 0000-0002-5963-2470
Mälardalen University, School of Innovation, Design and Engineering, Innovation and Product Realisation.ORCID iD: 0000-0002-0662-539X
2015 (English)In: DS 80-4 PROCEEDINGS OF THE 20TH INTERNATIONAL CONFERENCE ON ENGINEERING DESIGN (ICED 15) VOL 4: DESIGN FOR X, DESIGN TO X, 2015, 145-154 p.Conference paper, Published paper (Refereed)
Abstract [en]

Product development process has a considerable effect on factors such as time to market and quality of product which are vital for manufacturing companies to remain competitive. Therefore, study of the factors which influence the product development process such as characteristics of products and production systems is necessary to support and improve the product development process. Since most of the studies have been conducted in the context of high-volume manufacturing industries, the influences of characteristics of low-volume products and production systems on the product development process in such industries have not been considered sufficiently. In this paper, characteristics of low-volume products and production systems, their inter-relations and their influences on the product development process have been studied through a multiple case study. A general map of characteristics of low-volume products and production systems and their inter-relations was presented in this paper. Moreover, the influences of these characteristics on product development process including the reduced complexity of the process and lack of opportunities for test and refinement were discussed.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2015. 145-154 p.
Keyword [en]
ew product development; product introduction; low-volume; production preparation
National Category
Production Engineering, Human Work Science and Ergonomics
Research subject
Innovation and Design
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:mdh:diva-27844Scopus ID: 2-s2.0-84979696872OAI: oai:DiVA.org:mdh-27844DiVA: diva2:806031
Conference
International Conference on Engineering Design 2015 ICED15, 27-30 Jul 2015, Milan, Italy
Funder
Knowledge Foundation
Available from: 2015-04-17 Created: 2015-04-17 Last updated: 2016-08-18Bibliographically approved
In thesis
1. Towards tailoring the product introduction process for low-volume manufacturing industries
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Towards tailoring the product introduction process for low-volume manufacturing industries
2015 (English)Licentiate thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

As the closing phase of product development projects, the product introduction process significantly influences the time to market and product quality. The rapid launching of new products to market aids manufacturing companies in avoiding crucial consequences, such as a loss of market share and revenue and the early obsolescence of products in a globalized market. Therefore, the characteristics and influential factors of the product introduction process must be identified to facilitate the management of new product development projects and to maintain competitiveness for manufacturing companies.

The management and support of product introduction processes in low-volume manufacturing industries require solutions that are tailored to the characteristics and requirements of these industries. However, studies on the characteristics of low-volume manufacturing industries and their influence on the product introduction process are limited. Therefore, the objective of the research presented in this thesis is to develop knowledge about product introduction process and its facilitators in low-volume manufacturing industries by focusing on characteristics of products and production systems in these industries. To fulfil this objective, the characteristics of low-volume manufacturing industries and their influence on the product introduction process were investigated via literature reviews and a multiple-case study. In addition, the facilitators of the product introduction process in low-volume manufacturing industries were examined. A case study was performed, comprising two longitudinal real-time cases and two retrospective cases, all within one Swedish company.

The characteristics of low-volume products and production systems are studied in this research. The identified influences of these characteristics on the product introduction process include few engineering prototypes, limited and uncertain numbers of pre-series productions and the infeasibility of conventional production ramp-up. Other identified influences include the modification of existing products instead of the development of entirely new products, the use of existing production systems with slight modifications for new products, a high frequency of introducing new products, and an extensive focus on the functionality of products instead of their manufacturability.

Finally, the utilization of knowledge and experiences from the development and production of prior similar products was identified as a potential facilitator of the product introduction process in low-volume manufacturing industries. A process was suggested to support the product introduction process in low-volume manufacturing industries in gathering, sharing and using knowledge and experiences from the production of prior similar products. This process can compensate for the lack of opportunities to test and refine products and production systems during the product introduction process in low-volume manufacturing industries. 

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Västerås: Mälardalen University, 2015
Series
Mälardalen University Press Licentiate Theses, ISSN 1651-9256 ; 201
National Category
Production Engineering, Human Work Science and Ergonomics
Research subject
Innovation and Design
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:mdh:diva-27847 (URN)978-91-7485-205-9 (ISBN)
Presentation
2015-05-29, Filen, Mälardalens högskola, Eskilstuna, 10:00 (English)
Opponent
Supervisors
Funder
Knowledge Foundation
Available from: 2015-04-17 Created: 2015-04-17 Last updated: 2015-05-08Bibliographically approved

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