Product or service development works best as a cross-functional activity. Yet many companies pass the job between departments like a baton – or a hot potato. Give your new products and services a good start in life with collaborative processes and strong governance. Help each specialist play their part while making sure they also support their teammates.
When it comes to product or service development, no department, function or person is more important than any other. Each has a critical role to play:
- Sales and marketing
- – As the voice of the customer, the sales department clarifies requirements, negotiates change and has the unenviable job of saying no.
- – In some projects the Marketing team act as Product Manager, they create requirements and make decisions based on data.
- Design (Engineering)
- – Engineers turn the customer’s requirements into reality. They bring innovation and new technologies. They incorporate learning from earlier products.
- Design (Service Development)
- – The Service team thinks about the customer journey and designs the delivery of the service from request to thank-you.
- – The Service team writes requirements for service delivery providers.
- – From finding suppliers to building strong commercial relationships, the Purchasing team make sure all the resources needed to deliver are in place and dependable.
- – Purchasing may also source and manage project partners.
- – If you are making a product – in-house or out-sourced – your manufacturing department will look after cost, quality and delivery.
- Service Providers
- – If you offer a service, the team that delivers today has insight into good and bad practice. The team will design a successful delivery model.
- Indirect teams
- – HR recruits and oversees the development of team members.
- – Finance processes build the business case and budget, and report spend.
- – The Quality team identifies opportunities for improvement, whether in the product, service or your processes.
- – Health, Safety and the Environment keep your project team safe and within the bounds of best practice.
- – Validation specialists, regulatory advisers, company secretary/ legal advisers help the team stay within the law with policies, practices, procedures and advice.
Who can make sure each team member contributes, stays within the constraints of the project and listens to their colleagues? What role do you also need to deliver profitable product or service development?
Your friendly, neighbourhood Project Manager
Whether you need:
- help setting up a new team, their goals and processes
- a review of and recommendations for your existing New Product/ Service Introduction process
- to rescue a project that has gone off the rails
- hands-on help or coaching and guidance
I can help. I have worked on product or service development in various guises (product compliance, product quality, production quality, service quality and project management) at Phillips, Allied Signal, Rolls-Royce, Elektron and Eminox. And I can help you deliver a product or service that delights your customers while generating good returns for you.
Photo credit: Quino Al