Why re-design is the red sheet to avoid

If you’re going to develop a new product, changing elements in the concept feed will cost you next to nothing, especially when compared to what a re-design would. Once construction has begun, or in an even more dire scenario, once the product has gone to market, the longer you wait the more expensive it becomes to add a feature or resolve a problem in that product.

1. Don’t rush through early stages: Samsung’s Exploding Phone Batteries


An example that shocked the world over and was something of a press disaster for a company in high standing, were the exploding Samsung Galaxy 7 phone batteries. Once distributed around the world, customers noticed crackling, and in some cases actual flames coming from their shiny new phones. Not only was this extremely dangerous to the consumers, but for Samsung it proved an incredibly expensive mistake to have made. They spent approximately USD 5 billion recalling the phones and in lost sales, and were forced to issue multiple public statements. As one of the only real competitors to Apple and their iPhones at the time, the negative media frenzy was a severe blow to sales the world over.


2. Keep track of your product versions, and the pennies will watch themselves


A redesign could also be incredibly difficult to implement and redistribute if configuration management has not been done correctly. If you lose track of all the many different versions of the product released, and what version of each component each of those products has you’re in for a nightmarish few weeks. If you haven’t already streamlined your product and consolidated components, you won’t be able to easily track which customer has which product and which version of each component. The cost of recalling one version, let alone all version can be incredibly expensive and will detract time, energy and funds from your R&D team and what they should really be focusing on - the next product. The costs of fixing such problems later on will be far greater in the future if you don’t have a handle on all the details from the offset. If you haven’t already implemented digitalised production and testing, the costs that come with redesigns could be monumental and be very difficult to recover from.


3. Test more waste less


The theme of digitalisation and the marriage of new technologies and innovative business models is a theme across the industry. Companies who don’t understand the cost cutting value and importance of digitalisation will struggle badly along their competitors who have had the foresight and drive to digitalise and work innovatively with new technologies. Every R&D manager must understand that all digitalisation is closely intertwined and influence the production of products and can help avoid redesign by digitally simulating new models and tests, and when utilised properly can be used to optimise and produce the best, most innovative products[1].


Not only is redesign expensive, but when it’s borne out of necessity it can potentially cost not only money in recall and redesign, but lost sales and lost public fac. Benefits drastically outweigh the costs of investing more time at the beginning of the design and development process to identify and fix problems through more thorough testing.

[1] Andreas Saar

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