Mechanisms for Interteam Integration: Findings from Five Case Studies
Author(s)Browning, Tyson R.
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Many product development programs consist of multiple integrated product teams (IPTs) and functional groups. Interteam information dependencies greatly affect program success. Program integration has thus become an issue of increasing interest. This paper summarizes findings from five case studies of integrative mechanisms (IMs) in complex system product development projects at Chrysler, General Electric Aircraft Engines, McDonnell Douglas, Sundstrand, and Texas Instruments. Two types of IMs are investigated in this paper: (1) Systems engineering and interface optimization and (2) Improved information and communication technologies. As the appropriateness of a given IM varies as a function of many parameters—such as program stage, size, complexity, risk, etc.—the goal of this research was not to formulate a universal template for IM application. Rather, it is hoped that the lessons learned by these five programs will help others determine the appropriateness of particular IMs in their situations. Also, the continued development of an IM categorization scheme will hopefully prove useful to those developing an integration “tool kit.”
product development (PD), integrated product teams (IPTs), interteam, integrative mechanisms (IMs)
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