November 3, 2010

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What makes a global product development process?

Most of the time, product development processes are associated with commonly known standards, guidelines or methodologies such as – SEI CMMi, ISO, Agile, Scrum, etc… or with governance/management mechanisms such as - Stage Gate, Prince-2, PMP, etc…

Interestingly, these cover only a partial portion of a product development process in any company. A truly global product company should address several other aspects of its business into the way it identifies, builds, markets and maintains its products – aka its customers!

While defining, reviewing or assessing the global product development process, we should consider all these aspects. Here is a depiction of what constitutes a global product development process.

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Interestingly, three key challenges companies encounter while building a high-performing global product development process are:

  1. Traditional Processes, tools and management techniques are designed for closed operations v/s the need of open innovation
  2. Existing product architecture/ design assets and principles are generally monolithic – though modular with limited configurability and extendibility
  3. Product management, requirement elicitation and customer association principles are focused on a geography or technology base, than “user experience”

Truly global product development processes should address these challenges too.