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Making R&D Lean

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Abstract:

R&D executives are just beginning to consider implementing the principles of lean manufacturing. However, because R&D has different economics and different value creation mechanisms than manufacturing, lean R&D must differ substantially from lean manufacturing. Fortunately, many familiar lean concepts such as controlling queues, reducing batch size, and reducing waste can easily be transported into R&D organizations. Others, like variability reduction, must be approached very differently, because eliminating all variability in R&D also eliminates all value-added. Lean principles, used skillfully, offer the potential to simultaneously improve the cost, quality and speed of the R&D process.

Keywords: CONTROLLING QUEUES; IMPROVING FLOW; LEAN RAMPD; MANAGING VARIABILITY; REDUCING WASTE

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: July 1, 2005

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