Managers are finding breadth outscores depth in design and engineering knowledge requirements. Employers complain that it is difficult to get the breadth of skills required for industrial problem solving. Adaptability (keeping up with changes and where practical being ahead of them, innovation) and practical skills rank high with today’s employers.
Employees with a depth in their design and engineering discipline, plus breadth in related studies are the key to innovation in the work place Managers who enable the employees to be innovative are the future of successful manufacturing.
Design Led Product Development (DLPD) is the study that most closely aligns with the employer requirements and a rapidly changing economy and consumer world. Its coverage of design, engineering, marketing and business management areas, which are required by employers, makes this study option unique.
Another reason is because graduates are encouraged to think holistically about problems and to identify opportunities. They learn to define a problem, look for alternative possibilities, select the most appropriate way forwards, design, develop and test it. They also consider the multiple factors associated with the product’s context and user interactions.
DLPD designers and engineers are specialists in simplifying complexity, resolving ambiguity and being creative within defined boundaries. They learn to translate the languages spoken by the various disciplines that are involved in inter‐functional development projects. Very often specialists in other disciplines cannot understand or appreciate one another’s perspectives. DLPD designers are able to improve collaborations across R&D, manufacturing, shop floor and sales and marketing staff, remove ambiguities and lead inter-functional projects. They also appreciate business and organizational matters of scheduling and finance and the social and environmental implications of products and services.
“In the automotive industry, there are not enough broad gauge engineers and designers with multiple skill sets”says recruiting firm Barton Group inMichigan,USA.
Recently there has been a rise in preference for generalists over specialists in industry. In their experience, employers want design and engineering graduates who have a flexible approach to problem solving, have experience in meeting deadlines and appreciate the need to design and make meaningful, profitable products. Specialists are less preferred due to their narrow outlook and, often, lack of creativity. Successful product developers are able to keep abreast of the latest innovations in their field and be able to connect across disciplines.
The demands of today’s industrial world and global problem solving requires this breadth of skills.
Product Development Studies for Professionals involved in innovative product change and value added manufacturing.
This is the only programme of its type in China/Australasia. Its uniqueness is founded on the opportunity for participants to focus on specific areas of product development including product innovation management, practical finance and product design. Other courses do not have the range of design, management and engineering papers to choose from.
Project based courses, workshops and seminars of various duration are planned to introduce, or develop existing knowledge, in the areas of DLPD.
Coaching for specific projects or personnel is planned and will be performed in the workplace or the TD+ workshops.
Longer term consultancy is available to work with a whole employee group to permeate the employment culture at all levels and so develop an ‘in house’ thinking design environment and DLPD approach to future projects.
- A sound understanding of what drives successful product innovation and management.
- An ability to work within, and lead, inter-disciplinary teams, focused on product innovation and development.
- An understanding of the elements required and an ability to define the needs of a specific project to take a product or service to the market successfully.
- Research skills and an ability to use this research in ways to enhance the success of project.
- A socially responsible commitment to sustainable manufacturing processes, human resource management and ethical marketing procedures.
• What are the key learning elements of the programme?
Students learn the basics of product innovation management. What underpins product development, in an industrial or commercial context, and specific areas of product development processes, methods, design and industrial management.
• Unique aspects of the programme?
A research Capstone project forms a core part of the programme. Most projects are industry based and are supported by a specific company. This provides students with a “real life” opportunity to apply their knowledge and further their learning in a commercial environment. Compulsory industrial practical work.