Skip to main content

New Product Development is a complicated and highly collaborative process. And that means there is a lot of room for error.

At Blender, we work with a variety of clients, from startups to established businesses, assessing the feasibility of their product ideas. It’s our job to ensure a smooth development process, but sometimes issues do arise. The journey from idea to successful product launch is complex, and we believe that a strategic approach should underpin every stage.

When problems occur, it’s often because certain aspects of the design process have been skipped or overlooked, usually due to assumptions that they weren’t necessary. Let’s explore some examples of issues that arise at these stages of new product development. 

01.

Poor Product Management.

At the heart of every successful new product development (NPD) process lies the pivotal role of the product manager, a position often misunderstood or undervalued.

The product manager serves as the linchpin, bridging diverse domains such as design, engineering, marketing, finance, and the supply chain, ensuring a harmonious orchestration that is critical to the project’s success. 

The consequences of poor product management can be far-reaching, stymieing innovation, delaying time to market, and ultimately, impacting the bottom line. 

Through Blender’s lens, we observe and address these challenges by offering support and guidance, helping businesses navigate the intricate dance of product management to foster alignment, drive vision, and secure the successful launch of market-ready products.

02.

Underestimating the Importance of Assembling the Right Team.

A common pitfall in the new product development (NPD) process is underestimating the importance of assembling the right team. This oversight is often influenced by a commendable, yet sometimes misplaced, Kiwi attitude of self-reliance and the belief in the ability to ‘do it ourselves’. While this ethos has its merits, it does not always scale when it comes to transforming innovative ideas into successful, market-ready products. 

In the quest to scale, and achieve commercial success, it’s essential to acknowledge that the DIY approach has its limits. The complexity and specificity of modern product development demand a diverse range of specialisations. While it might be tempting to rely on a generalist skill set, the reality is that certain stages of development require highly specialised knowledge. For example, a project may necessitate the involvement of specialist engineers or scientists whose expertise is critical to overcoming particular technical challenges or innovating in a niche market.

To illustrate, let’s consider a non-exhaustive list of roles that might be essential for a given project, bearing in mind that the specific needs will vary depending on the project’s unique requirements:

  • Strategic Planners
  • Product Design Engineers
  • Specialist Engineers (e.g., materials science, electronics)
  • Quality Assurance Professionals
  • Manufacturing Experts
  • Supply Chain Managers
  • Software Developers for Hardware/Software Integration

This list is merely a starting point, intended to prompt you to think about the gaps in your current team setup. Blender is here to help bridge those gaps. We assist in the formation of a bespoke team for your project, drawing from a broad network of professionals and specialists who can bring your product vision to life.

03.

Inadequate Testing and Validation.

Validation at each stage of the product journey is not just a step; it’s a mantra at Blender. From the initial prototype to the final product, we follow a rigorous validation process. This means we’re not just checking if each iteration works as it should, but also making sure it fits with what the market wants and users expect. By embedding validation into every phase, we turn potential pitfalls into stepping stones towards success.

04.

Overlooking User Feedback.

Understanding and incorporating user feedback is crucial, and at Blender, it’s an integral part of our process. We don’t wait until the product launch; we proactively engage potential users early on. Through targeted testing and feedback sessions, we gather insights that shape the product’s development. This approach not only refines the product but also significantly reduces the need for costly post-launch modifications.

05.

Failure in Regulatory Compliance.

Navigating the maze of regulatory compliance is a challenge that can make or break a product’s success.  From the design stage to the final product testing, compliance checks should be done to avoid any last-minute hurdles. Our proactive approach in this area safeguards not just the product, but also the investment and reputation of our clients.

06.

The Critical Timing Of Manufacturing Planning.

A frequently overlooked yet crucial aspect of the new product development (NPD) process is the timing of manufacturing planning. The core of this issue lies in the common misstep of waiting until a product is fully designed before considering the manufacturing implications. This approach not only hinders the speed to market but also overlooks the invaluable input that manufacturing experts can contribute early on in the design process.

There are two primary reasons why manufacturing planning should commence early. Firstly, integrating manufacturing considerations at the outset facilitates better management of timelines, propelling the product to market more swiftly. 

Secondly, and perhaps more importantly, the involvement of manufacturing expertise during the design phase can significantly influence product design decisions. Manufacturers possess unique insights that can optimise the design for manufacturability, cost-efficiency, and scalability.

Engaging with manufacturing partners and supply chain strategists during the initial phases of product development ensures a cohesive approach, where design and manufacturability considerations are aligned. This alignment becomes critically important at the design transfer stage, where the convergence of design, manufacturing, and supply chain strategies necessitates thorough coordination to achieve seamless production ramp-up.

07.

Not Understanding The Complexity Of New Product Development.

Navigating the complexities of new product development requires not just skill and expertise, but also a deep understanding of the intricacies involved in bringing a product from concept to market. At Blender, we’re experts and guiding our clients through this labyrinth, ensuring each critical aspect of the process is meticulously managed and executed.

Our strategic, comprehensive approach is tailored to each unique project, ensuring that your product not only reaches the market but thrives in it.

Ready to take the first step?

If you’re ready to embark on a product development journey and want to ensure your vision is realised with precision and care, reach out to Blender. Let us be your guide and partner in turning your innovative ideas into successful, market-ready products.

Contact our team