Which Management Tools & Techniques are Used During Stage-Gate®?

Best practices for the process, the gates and gate keepers during Stage-Gate® have been explained. But are there newer more innovative tools and techniques being used? Kevin Coughlan is currently studying project management at the UCD Smufit Graduate Business School in Dublin. This article is a description of his report and a request for assistance with research on the topic; which management tools and techniques are used to compliment the first three stages of the Stage-Gate® process?

I am currently completing an MSc in Project Management at the UCD Smurfit Graduate Business School in Dublin. I am asking for Stage-Gate® users to complete an anonymous survey about the management tools and techniques they use.

I would be grateful for any assistance you can provide with my research and I will be more than happy to send my final report to anyone who is interested. The deadline for responses is the 27th of August.

Reasons for Researching this Topic

Over the course of the winter break my class was given a reading list which introduced us to the Stage-Gate® process for NPD. The process was discussed extensively and the class was tasked with producing a literature review on the topic.

During my reading I found extensive literature on the Stage-Gate® process; which addressed issues such as best practices (Cooper & Edgett, 2012), ideation methods (Cooper & Dreher, 2010), the errors and fail points to avoid (Cooper, 2011), and tips for implementing the process (Edgett& Jones, 2000). During my reading I found only one article which discussed the management tools and techniques which could be used to compliment the process (Mazur, 2000).

The class was introduced to several of the tools and techniques discussed during the course of the year but there were also many which were not touched upon. Due to this I felt there was a gap in my knowledge of the Stage-Gate® process. Using the references from Mazur I familiarised myself with the tools and techniques mentioned. I could not find more current literature on this topic, and for this reason I chose to research this topic for my final report.

Innovation Since 2000

Thirteen years have passed since Mazur’s article and while the tools and techniques he mentioned are still widely used, I want to ascertain which are most widely used during the Stage-Gate® process.

I am aware of the software packages certified by Stage-Gate® International which help automate the innovation process; you can view the list here. I want to find out if the tools and techniques mentioned in Mazur, or newer more innovative tools and techniques are being utilised by Stage-Gate® users.

Questionnaire Design

The questionnaire is on the phases of the first three stages of the Stage-Gate®process. Participants can select their answer from the options provided which were taken from Mazur. Participants also have the option to select none or other, and provide the name if other is selected.

As mentioned I would be grateful for any assistance you can provide with my research and I will be more than happy to send my final report to anyone who is interested.

By Kevin Coughlan

 

About the Author

Kevin Coughlan is currently studying project management at the UCD Smufit Graduate Business School in Dublin. Kevin is currently working on a final research report into the management tools and techniques used during the different phases of the Stage-Gate process. Prior to the course in project management Kevin worked for three years as a sailing instructor at the Irish National Sailing School. Kevin holds a BA in Economics from UCD, and an MSc in International Economics and Public Policy from Cardiff University.

References

Cooper, R.G. 2011. Winning at New Products-Creating Value Through Innovation 4th ed. New York, NY: Basic Books: A Member of the Perseus Book Group.

Cooper, R.G. and A. Dreher. 2010. Voice-Of-Customer-Methods: What Is The Best Source Of New-Product Ideas? Marketing Management Magazine; Winter, 38-48.

Cooper, R.G. and S.J. Edgett. 2012. Best practice in the Idea-to-Launch Process and Its Governance; A study of new-product development practicesat 211 businesses provides Insights into best practices in both the idea-to-launch process and its governance. Research-Technology Management; 11, 43-54.

Edgett, J. and M. Jones. 2000. Ten Tips for successfully Implementing a Stage-Gate® Product InnovationProcess. Stage-Gate® reference paper #33; [ONLINE] Available at: htttp://www.stage-gate.com/resources_stage-gate_wp33.php.

Mazur, G. 2000. QFD 2000: integrating QFD and Other Quality Methods to Improve the New Product Development process. In: 12th Symposium on QFD/ 6th International Symposium on QFD. Ann Arbor, MI; QFD Institute.

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