The design of the manufacturing process is integrated with the product design
The design of new products and the design of their associated manufacturing processes must be undertaken simultaneously. 70% of a product’s cost is determined at the design stage, therefore manufacturing experts must be directly involved for products to be cost competitive and of consistently high quality.
Key Issues
·         The new product introduction processes should not start until the business development phase has been completed and management agreement has been reached on the funding needed to proceed with the project
·         Three different aspects of manufacturing design must be considered:
1.     The design of the product to ensure key features and surfaces can be manufactured cost effectively on existing or new equipment
1.1.   The correct application of dimensional tolerances and standardised profiles have a significant impact on manufacturing costs
1.2.   Close collaboration is required between the design and manufacturing engineers, with the final dimensions being defined by manufacturing
  1. New technology and production methods that may be needed to ensure the components can be made consistently to the correct tolerances
  2. The design of the production facilities needed to manufacture items in the volumes required to meet the predicted market demand
·         These three tasks are demanding in both time and expertise and are very often under resourced or, in some instances, not addressed at all
·         A critical decision when examining the manufacturing requirements for new products is the make versus buy decision. This determines:
o      Which components will be made in-house
o      The skill requirements for current and future employees
o      Core competencies of the business, influencing the direction of the business and long-term product and process innovation
o      Investments in supply-chain processes and in-house facilities
·         For large projects, all aspects of the product and manufacturing process design should be controlled and managed by a project manager
Factors for Success     
Factors to  Avoid
1.     People without responsibility for meeting weekly delivery schedules are allocated to manufacturing aspects of product development
2.     The skills of traditional manufacturing personnel are enhanced
3.     Good costing systems are in place to accurately evaluate alternative ideas
4.     Capital is available for investment in new equipment.
1.     Believing that manufacturing aspects of new product design will be adequately covered by people from a traditional product design team
2.     Expecting people who are responsible for operations to have the time necessary to undertake design tasks
5.     Neglecting to address the important aspects of manufacturing until after the new product design is finalised
Who does this apply to?
Everyone involved in new product development, key component suppliers
Realisable Benefits
Lower manufacturing costs, a more competitive business, improved sales


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