Is product development part of operations? What are the steps you need to do for this kind of process? And how can you benefit from this? Read on to know.
Is Product Development Part of Operations?
Product development is part of operations, not part of marketing. Operations mean the activities that need to be done to produce a product. It is the way to make or manufacture a product or service. How? By using resources (including human resources) and tools and procedures to create or make something.
This process involves all of the following:
1. Finding out what customers want.
2. Finding out how they want it.
3. Supplying what they want in the way they want it.
4. Getting payment for it.
5. Doing better than your competitors at doing what your customers want from you!
These steps are generally done by marketing people and operations people together. But product development is part of operations, not part of marketing.
Here is why: Operations involve physical processes (manufacturing, storing, delivering, etc.). And it also involves a lot of things that are essential business processes:
1. Setting up plans for a variety of purposes (sales forecast, budgets, etc.).
2. Getting the right materials and parts needed to make what we sell (ordering).
3. Making sure that the equipment we use to make our products work properly (maintaining).
4. Getting the finished product from our facilities in good shape so it can be stored until it’s sold (shipping).
5. Getting payments for what we made (collecting).
6. Making sure that we use our money wisely so that we’re getting enough money to pay for all these things (controlling).
7. And finally, making sure that we spend more time making things than spending time on paperwork! (reducing costs).
These are all business processes, just like marketing processes. This means that product development is part of operations, NOT marketing.
Product Development Process
Product development starts with determining what to make. This means that the first thing that the product development department does is to find out what customers want. They do this by watching TV shows and movies, reading books, listening to radio and music, surfing the Internet, and interviewing people.
Further, it is also important to find out how customers want it. This may mean that you have to visit some of your customers in their homes or offices to see how they live or work. You can also ask them about what they want by sending them surveys or asking for comments on your website.
This step includes designing and building prototypes of new products. This is done by designers who usually work in the design department, but may also work with other departments. They often use computer-aided design (CAD) and computer-aided manufacturing (CAM) software. This is to create a three-dimensional model of a product that can be used by engineers to build actual parts.
As you can see, it is a very useful process to find out what customers want and to give them what they want. This can increase your sales. It can also save you money and time because you don’t have to make things that do not sell well.