Dr. Michael A. McGinnis, C.P.M.
Dr. Michael A. McGinnis, C.P.M., Professor of Marketing & Supply Chain Management, University of South Alabama, Mobile, AL 36688-0002, 334/460-7907
Mr. Rafeekh Mele Vallopra
Mr. Rafeekh Mele Vallopra, Applications Engineering, National Instruments, Austin, TX 78759-3504, 512/795-8248
Abstract. In a CAPS study the authors examined a wide range of issues in purchasing and supplier involvement in new product development(1). One of the results of this research was the identification of variables that effect new product success when purchasing and suppliers are involved in the new product development process; and when they are not. Based on our research we developed a self-administered exercise that can help managers evaluate new product success in their business units.
The purpose of this exercise is to provide managers with insights into the level of involvement of purchasing and suppliers in their business unit's new product development process. It also provides insights into the effectiveness of this involvement. While this exercise will provide useful managerial insights to those who complete and score the questions that appear in the exercise, the results should not be considered as definitive or prescriptive.
The exercise is comprised of four parts. Part A is a series of questions concerning your perception of your business unit.
BUSINESS UNIT refers to the company or division that you identify with in your job.
NEW PRODUCT refers to new products being marketed by your business unit to consumers, industrial customers, and or resellers.
NEW PRODUCT DEVELOPMENT PROCESS refers to the procedures that guide the conceptualization, design, engineering, production, and sourcing of a new product.
PART A. PLEASE WRITE THE NUMBER OF THE RESPONSE TO EACH QUESTIONS THAT BEST REFLECTS YOUR BUSINESS UNIT IN THE SPACES PROVIDED, USING THE FOLLOWING KEY:
1 = STRONGLY DISAGREE; 2 = DISAGREE; 3 = NEITHER AGREE NOR DISAGREE;
4 = AGREE; AND 5 = STRONGLY AGREE
There are no "right" or "wrong" answers to any of these questions. What is needed is your frank and honest response. DO NOT LOOK UP ANY INFORMATION IN YOUR BUSINESS UNIT'S RECORDS. Answers based on your perceptions and recollections are all that is needed.
Do suppliers participate in the New Product Development Process in your Business Unit? YES NO IF "YES," GO TO QUESTION 8. IF "NO," GO TO PART B.
PLEASE PROCEED TO PART B
PART B. SCORING
PLEASE PROCEED TO PART C.
PART C. PLEASE CIRCLE THE NUMBER ON THE CONTINUUM THAT IS CLOSEST TO YOUR SCORE ON EACH OF THE SEVEN CATEGORIES.
|1. New Product Success||2.9||3.3||3.7||4.2||4.6|
|2. Business Unit Competitive Responsiveness||2.6||3.3||4.0||4.7||5.0|
|3. Purchasing's Role in New Product Development||2.0||2.8||3.7||4.5||5.0|
|New Product Development Strategic Evaluation and control||2.7||3.3||3.8||4.4||4.9|
PART D.INTERPRETATION AND DISCUSSION
Category scores that are near the mean value indicate that your perception of your business unit's situation is comparable to the average of those respondents whose "new product success" score is "high." Values near "positive" standard deviations indicate that your perception of your business unit's situation is above average compared to those respondents whose "new product success" score is "high." Values near "negative" standard deviations indicate that your perception of your business unit's situation is below average compared to those respondents whose "new product success" score is "high."
The results of our research indicate that only "Business Unit Competitive Responsiveness" affects "New Product Success" when suppliers are not involved in the new product development process. When suppliers are involved two additional scales affect "New Product Success." They are "New Product Development Strategic Evaluation and Control" and "Purchasing in a Major New Product Development Role."
If your business unit's suppliers do not participate in new product development you should have completed only categories , "New Product Success," and 2, "Business Unit Competitive Responsiveness." If your business unit's suppliers do participate in new product development you completed all four categories.
Connecting the circled values should give you a visual picture of your business unit's perceived performance compared to business units that are "high" on "new product success."
To examine a category more closely, you may want to examine your response to individual questions in that category. For example, assume your score for category 2, "Business Unit Competitive Responsiveness," was 2.75, well below average compared to those respondents whose "new product success" was "high." Further assume that your responses to items 4 through 7 were 2, 3, 3, and 3 respectively. Inspection of these items suggests that you perceive your business unit as not being not very strong in responding to changing customer and supplier needs, marketing new products quickly and effectively. In addition your business unit is weak in responding to changing competitor strategies.
As a purchasing manager you might be able to influence responsiveness to changing supplier and customer needs through better coordination and cooperation between your business unit and its suppliers; and through better coordination and cooperation between purchasing and other departments within your business unit.
In the space provided write a brief critique of each category as it applies to your business unit. Include in each category positive and negative comments, overall assessment, areas for improvement, and one or two suggestion for improvement.
This exercise provides the purchasing professional with a means of applying Center for Advanced Purchasing Studies sponsored research to his/her business unit. The insights from this exercise can be used two ways. First, they can be a starting point for self-critique. In this situation the self-critique is used as a starting point to assess organizational strategy, purchasing involvement, and supplier selection in new product development. Second, they can be used as a means of verifying previously developed insights. As with any other organizational evaluation technique, other evaluations should be used as a means of verifying its results. While this exercise provides managerially useful insights, its results should not be considered as unequivocal.
(1)McGinnis, Michael A., Rafeekh Mele Vallopra. Purchasing and Supplier Involvement: New Product Development and Production/Operations Process Development and Improvement. Tempe, AZ: Center for Advanced Purchasing Studies, 1998.