Ideas to Requirements in the Product Engineering Lifecycle


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Presentation to joint INCOSE / ASQ meeting in Colorado Springs, Jan 8, 2014.


Bringing innovative products to market has many challenges, but few as tough as understanding and addressing changing market needs. Product Managers can receive thousands of product enhancement requests and need a way to rapidly filter and prioritize these to achieve a clear and concise set of product requirements. These requirements will span systems, software, and hardware engineering. Managing changes to requirements across a lifecycle that crosses multiple engineering disciplines adds to the complexity. In this session we'll look at the role of customer-contributed Ideas in forming and prioritizing Product Management decisions.

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Ideas to Requirements in the Product Engineering Lifecycle

  1. 1. IDEAS TO REQUIREMENTS IN THE PRODUCT ENGINEERING LIFECYCLE Mills Ripley ALM Customer Solutions Director for North America, PTC Inc.
  2. 2. AGENDA • Introductions • Product Management Opportunities and Challenges • Definitions – Ideation and Idea Management • Context – Ideation, Requirements, Application Lifecycle Management • Example – Idea Management Customer Community Portal • Q&A
  3. 3. INNOVATION AND QUALITY DRIVE MARKETLEADING PRODUCTS High quality, innovative products increase market share and revenue Innovative processes improve quality and accelerate time to market while decreasing cost and risk 3
  4. 4. PROCESS TRANSFORMATION Market Forces Competitive Pressures Software Intensive Products Reduce Time to Market Connectivity The Need to… Transform Systems and Reduce Product Costs Software Engineering Regulation Processes Accelerate Product Innovation Personalization Streamline Regulatory Compliance Globalization Improve Product Quality
  5. 5. IDEATION IS ABOUT TECHNIQUES THAT GENERATE IDEAS From our friends at Wikipedia… • Ideation is an emerging buzzword (c. 2004) representing the creative process of generating, developing, and communicating new ideas, where an idea is understood as a basic element of thought that can be either visual, concrete, or abstract. As such, it is an essential part of the design process, both in education and practice. • Ideation can be contrasted with brainstorming in that brainstorming is a specific instance of ideation. Brainstorming employs specific rules (such as disallowing any contributor to negate any idea offered during a brainstorming session), while ideation encompasses all techniques that generate ideas. • Several large companies, like Starbucks and Best Buy, have opened up this process to their customers, inviting anyone to raise new ideas for possible company products using dedicated idea management software open on the Internet.
  7. 7. SYSTEM CLASSES & RELATIONSHIPS Community Member 1 0..* Release Idea 0..* 1 0..* 0..* 0..* Customer Rating Need Date Customer Deliverable * Fulfilled by Product Requirement Satisfied by Functional Spec Validated by Test Case
  8. 8. CUSTOMER & MARKET RELATIONSHIP Customer 0..* 0..* importance rating: int Market
  9. 9. CUSTOMER & MARKET RELATIONSHIP A benign example… Customer: Nike importance = 5 importance = 9 Customer: Under Armour importance = 7 importance = 2 Market: Sports Apparel Market: Sports Footwear
  10. 10. IDEA MANAGEMENT – COMMUNITY PERSPECTIVE • Objectives • Idea Search • Idea Submission • Idea Collaboration (edit and comment) • Idea Rating • Value • Influence product direction by creating and rating ideas • Communicate with other community members as well as product management • Track the status of “my” ideas
  12. 12. IDEA MANAGEMENT – PRODUCT MANAGER PERSPECTIVE • Objectives • Analyze ideas using value and cost data • Capture additional value and cost data from internal roles • Perform opportunity analysis to determine if ideas support market opportunities • Show how ideas are grouped into customer deliverables • Flowdown Ideas to Customer Deliverables to Requirements… • Value • Ideas are evaluated and related to other lifecycle assets - critical for planning, impact analysis, rolling-up metrics and monitoring progress • Real-time metrics and analysis improves alignment to customer needs, product deliverables, and business outcomes
  14. 14. NOTES ON VALUATION CRITERIA • These are just a sampling of common criteria • Customer Value • Strategic Value • Sales Value • Estimated Cost • Can be single value criteria or composite criteria based on multiple choice questions with assigned values and weightings (quite simple to implement) • Value and costs data can be captured role by role through a workflow that is as simple or intricate as needed • Real-time dashboards enable informed and timely decisions
  15. 15. IDEA MANAGEMENT IS ABOUT INNOVATION AND PRODUCT IMPROVEMENT • Idea Management can significantly improve product requirements, but that alone does not guarantee the improvement of products • Product Improvement also involves: • Ensuring traceability from ideas to requirements to tests and test results to ensure we are actually building what we set out to build • Enabling reuse across the lifecycle ensures that validated and proven sets of assets are propagated • Tracking progress and quality metrics throughout development • Automating and enforcing proven workflows
  16. 16. SUMMARY Build the Right Thing Community inputs & rates ideas Release Community Member Idea Customer and Market Ratings – “How important is this to key customers and markets?” “When do they need this deliverable?” “If a deliverable slips, who is going to be upset and how upset will they be?” Ideas Evaluated & Rationalized “What is the strategic value, sales value, community value, level of effort…?” “How are ideas related?” Rating Need Date Customer Deliverable Fulfilled by Customer Product Requirement Ideas Formalized – “What do we need to build?” Real Time Test Status – “Am I Ready to Release?” Satisfied by Ideas Executed – “How do we need to build it?” Build the Thing Right Release Planning – “When Should I Release?” Functional Spec Validated by Test Case