The Smart Techie was renamed Siliconindia India Edition starting Feb 2012 to continue the nearly two decade track record of excellence of our US edition.

September - 2007 - issue > Cover Feature

Making Critical Technology Decisions

Rafiq Somani
Monday, September 3, 2007
Rafiq Somani
In today’s world technology has emerged a key enabler of process automation in any organization. The challenge for any business leader is to align technology deployment, scalability, and adoption based on current and future business dynamics. Manufacturing companies recognize that building and delivering great products is at the core of a successful business strategy. In any industry product development processes always remain the competitive edge and it is important for companies to ensure they continue to excel in it. Toyota Motor Corporation is one of the great examples for this.

“If you can’t describe what you are doing as a process, you don’t know what you’re doing.”- W. Edwards Deming.

The approach that can be followed by companies in making critical technology decisions for product development is to align technology roadmap with business goals. The companies need to identify key product development initiatives and determine the key processes and capabilities needed to execute them and show results. These goals can be identified by key value opportunities like growing market share with customer-focused products, developing new markets, or lowering product costs. These value opportunities will have a direct impact on top line or bottom line of the business.

The key initiatives in product development that support the identified value opportunities need to be assessed and prioritized. The initiatives could be: increasing adherence to quality standards and methods, improving design for manufacturability and serviceability. The next step will be to ascertain product development processes needed to realize company initiatives, and identification of highest priority processes with capability gaps through analysis. The processes could be detailed design and new product introduction.

Based on business importance and process maturity gaps, a roadmap can be identified for process optimization. In order to support this roadmap, capabilities in terms of technology infrastructure can be identified. Product development system supporting this roadmap needs to be deployed as a single integral system with all digital product information managed and controlled with process optimization.

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