Managing New Product Development
New product development requires organizations to facilitate cooperation and coordination between department boundaries within the organization. To facilitate this cooperation and coordination, organizations form cross-functional new product development teams to lead and manage the development process for new products. There are several variations that these teams can be formed and managed. New product development teams can be structured into four types: functional, lightweight, heavyweight, and autonomous (Schilling, 2008). In functional teams, members remain in their respective departments and report to their regular manager. In this type of team, members meet periodically to discuss the project. This type of team is usually temporary and team members may only spend a small amount of time on team projects (Schilling, 2008). In lightweight teams, members are still a part of their functional departments, as with functional teams, however, unlike functional teams, a lightweight team has a project manager and a dedicated liaison to facilitate communication and coordination between functions (Schilling, 2008). Heavyweight team members are removed from their functional departments and are collocated with a project manager. The project managers in heavyweight teams are usually members of senior management with significant authority to command resources. Under a heavyweight team, members are assigned full-time to the project. This helps ensure cross-functional coordination and communication (Schilling, 2008). Under autonomous teams, members are completely removed from their functional departments and dedicated full-time to the development team. In this type of team, membership is sometimes permanent. This type of team is headed by a very senior manager with full control over resources contributed from different functional departments (Schilling, 2008). Autonomous teams often create their own policies, procedures, and reward systems, apart from the rest of the organization. They are also held fully responsible for the success or failure of any given project. In many ways, autonomous teams behave as if they are independent decisions within the organization. This allows rapid and efficient new product development because they do not have to deal with organizational procedures, which could slow the development process (Schilling, 2008).There are many challenges managers face when managing innovation. Alcatel – Lucent has a proven record of accomplishment with teams within the Bell Laboratories. Alcatel – Lucent prides itself on being the place where innovation, through vision and technology, intercept the needs of its customers from incubating start-up projects to performing fundamental and applied research. Bell Labs is the engine behind innovation at Alcatel - Lucent designing products and services that are at the forefront of communications technology. More than any other institution, Bell Labs has been at the forefront weaving technological fabric of modern society (Alcatel - Lucent | Innovation, 2006 - 2010). Their scientist and engineers have made seminal discoveries, launched technical revolutions that have reshaped the way people live, work, and play. They have built the most advanced and reliable communications networks in the world. Bell Labs has helped Alcatel – Lucent take the lead in shaping tomorrows broadband networks powered with service intelligence at every network layer (Alcatel - Lucent | Innovation, 2006 - 2010) Bell Labs enjoys a rich tradition of inventions and innovations that have fundamentally changed the way people communicate and share their lives. Bell Labs utilizes an autonomous team format that recognizes both multiple dimensions of research as well as cross-discipline (cross-functional) interactions are critical to the innovation process. Bell Labs scientific disciplines include mathematicians, algorithmic scientist, physical scientist, nanotechnologist,...
References: Alcatel - Lucent | Company Overview. (2006 - 2010). Retrieved April 30, 2010, from Alcatel - Lucent - About Us: http://www.alcatel- lucent.com/wps/portal/AboutUs/Overview/?lu_lang_code=en
Alcatel - Lucent | Innovation. (2006 - 2010). Acatel - Lucent | About Alcatel - Lucent Innovation. Retrieved April 30, 2010, from Alcatel - Lucent - About Innovation: http://www.alcatel- lucent.com/wps/portal/!ut/p/kcxml/04_Sj9SPykssy0xPLMnMz0vM0Y_QjzKLd4w3MfQ FSYGYRq6m-pEoYgbxjgiRIH1vfV- P_NxU_QD9gtzQiHJHR0UAAD_zXg!!/delta/base64xml/L2dJQSEvUUt3QS80SVVFLz ZfQV9CVEg!
Alcatel - Lucent. (2010). Innovating Innovation. Retrieved July 6, 2010, from Bell Labs | Alcatel - Lucent: http://www.alcatel- lucent.com/wps/portal/!ut/p/kcxml/04_Sj9SPykssy0xPLMnMz0vM0Y_QjzKLd4x3DnA FSYGYRq6m- pEoYgbxjggRX4_83FT9IH1v_QD9gtzQiHJHR0UAZYL6lQ!!/delta/base64xml/L3dJdy Evd0ZNQUFzQUMvNElVRS82X0FfNDND
Schilling, M. A. (2008). Strategic Management of Technological Innovation, 2nd ed. New York: McGraw-Hill Irwin.
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