Manufacturing Execution System • October 18, 2016

Improving New Product Introduction (NPI) with MES

Michel Gadbois Michel Gadbois

Mastering New Product Introduction (NPI) has been a longstanding challenge for manufacturers, especially in a complex production environment. NPI is the staged process that translates a market need into a sales-ready product. Failing to plan NPI effectively can threaten the long-term viability of a manufacturing enterprise.

At the outset of the decade, Gartner noted that the 50 percent success rate for new product introductions was driving organizations to seek increased NPI success. One of their summary points was focused on the need to support product innovation through investment in applications to support NPI and its planning.

Using MES for NPI Success

A Manufacturing Execution System (MES) is one of the principal enterprise applications that can help companies achieve better NPI success for two reasons:

  • NPI teams can take advantage of integrated MES to decrease the challenges and constraints faced in NPI, using it to hand off documented processes and product knowledge to better leverage those assets for volume production.
  • Data captured in MES provides NPI teams with a feedback loop that can be used to improve current and future products.

By providing manufacturers a means to improve and streamline collaboration between design, engineering, and production, MES enables manufacturers to build new products and bring them to market without undue stops and starts—getting them right the first time, at the highest possible quality and lowest possible cost.

Reducing Latencies Through MES Means Better Results for NPI

Improved change management is key, and complex manufacturers can leverage real time information from MES to reduce latency between design, engineering, and production. This is a critical factor in successful product development and launch. By providing the data for a cross-functional bridge during the NPI process, MES works with PLM to both ensure process adherence across the enterprise and drive down time to market.

NPI Helps Manufacturers Keep Up

In today’s accelerating global markets, products are in production for increasingly shorter lifecycles and undergo more frequent product changes and improvements. New products are launched with astonishing speed as companies look to meet requirements for what has been called “the culture of the new.” As such, NPI capability is a significant competitive differentiator in most manufacturing sectors.

For companies looking to master NPI that understand the integral connection between excellent process planning and better rates of NPI success, MES is an essential tool.

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Model-Based Enterprise Strategy

Based on a survey of 250 discrete manufacturers, this research study, conducted by Tech-Clarity, establishes a "state of the market" for MBE adoption.