| Research-Technology Management
Do You Need a New Product-Development Strategy?
Many firms rely on a single new-product development process for all projects. But designing new products for different business contexts requires that a firm deploy different new-product development processes. Products designed for stable and mature end-user markets require a process optimized for control and efficiency. In contrast, first-of-a-kind "breakthrough" products require a more emergent process that aims to discover whether there is any market to be served in the first place. Applying a uniform "best-practice" process to all development efforts ignores the major differences between these projects and may result in missed opportunities. This article describes a framework to address this problem, allowing a firm to better align the design of its development processes to the specific aims of individual projects. We illustrate this framework with examples from Hewlett-Packard, a large, diversified electronics firm that has successfully piloted this new approach across multiple business units.