KeywordsTechnology and Engineering
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AbstractNew product development is a complex process for bringing new products to the market. While manufacturing is a very repetitive process, the new product development has to be more flexible as the same product is never developed again. Therefore the theory behind lean manufacturing is not applicable in new product development. The purpose of this study is to propose improvements to Oriflame’s new product development process from a lean perspective. This means that instead of lean manufacturing, a more dynamic development method extracted from Toyota development system is used as a theoretical framework for this thesis. This method is called lean product development.<br> From the theoretical base of lean product development a model has been developed to measure the lean maturity level of a company’s new product development. This model has been named “Lean product development maturity model” by the authors and consist of 13 questions (One for each principle of lean product development) that will try to cover the foundation of a lean product development process. Each question has been given 6 statements that cover different levels of maturity for each principle. The model was used by the authors to do a gap analysis on Oriflame’s new product development process to find out what level it is today and which level Oriflame should aim for in the future. The gap was found to be quite big in almost every principle and further research on how to improve the process to reach higher levels was conducted.<br> Oriflame’s new product development process is formed as a stage and gate process with different stages where activities are performed and gates where decisions should be made whether to go further or not with the development of the product. Oriflame has six different product categories and develops about 400 new products each year. When these products are<br> IV<br> being developed, they are divided into different process templates depending on innovation level of the formula and the packaging.<br> To get an understanding of the process and its problems, the authors held interviews with process managers and a comprehensive survey, in form of a questionnaire, was sent out to the people working in the process. The survey was created based on the 7 wastes and the 13 principles of lean product development. From this data collection, eleven areas of improvement were found; such as continuous improvement, employee development, and organizational learnings.<br> The authors then produced ten solutions to overcome the areas of improvement. Each improvement suggestion’s impact on the principles was considered to understand the benefit of the improvement. Consideration was also done on how costly in resources (such as time, people and money) it would be to implement. Three groups where made out of the ten solutions, were one group is facilitator for the rest of the solutions, one group contains important solutions and one group contains uncertain solutions. Recommendations are presented in the end of the report for Oriflame to consider.