Divergence and lifecycle offsets in product families with commonality.

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  • Additional Information
    • Author-Supplied Keywords:
      commonality
      divergENce
      lifecycle offsets
      platform management
      platform strategy
      product developmENt
    • NAICS/Industry Codes:
      336413 Other Aircraft Parts and Auxiliary Equipment Manufacturing
      336411 Aircraft Manufacturing
      336414 Guided Missile and Space Vehicle Manufacturing
      336415 Guided Missile and Space Vehicle Propulsion Unit and Propulsion Unit Parts Manufacturing
      336412 Aircraft Engine and Engine Parts Manufacturing
      334511 Search, Detection, Navigation, Guidance, Aeronautical, and Nautical System and Instrument Manufacturing
      336419 Other Guided Missile and Space Vehicle Parts and Auxiliary Equipment Manufacturing
      926110 Administration of General Economic Programs
      333994 Industrial Process Furnace and Oven Manufacturing
      334513 Instruments and Related Products Manufacturing for Measuring, Displaying, and Controlling Industrial Process Variables
      334413 Semiconductor and Related Device Manufacturing
    • Abstract:
      Commonality, or the reuse and sharing of components, manufacturing processes, architectures, interfaces, and infrastructure across the members of a product family, is an often leveraged strategy targeted at improving corporate profitability. Commonality strategies are widespread in the literature and in industrial practice, but a clear gap exists: The literature has a distinctly positive bias towards the benefits of commonality, whereas industrial success with commonality has been mixed. This article explores two phenomena, divergence and lifecycle offsets, that may prevent companies from properly assessing and realizing the potential benefits of commonality. Using a multiple case study approach, we trace commonality levels through the lifecycles of seven complex product families that span the aerospace, automotive, semiconductor capital equipment, and printing industries. The case studies indicate that commonality tends to decline over time, a phenomenon we title divergence. In contrast to the prevailing concept of parallel development in product families, we find that lifecycle offsets, or temporal separations between the development, manufacturing, operations, and/or retirement phases of two or more products, are prevalent in industrial practice. Through this exploratory study, we find that lifecycle offsets may reduce the potential benefits of commonality, make the realization of benefits much more difficult, delay the realization of benefits, and reallocate potential benefits across individual products. We predict that lifecycle offsets exacerbate divergence. We propose a framework for categorizing parts-level changes that explicitly recognizes the potential for divergence. We conclude with guidance for product family managers, namely, that commonality be managed dynamically throughout the product family lifecycle, rather than as a static property. Additionally, we articulate the need to make commonality decisions from a product family perspective, a perspective that may lead to decisions that create near-term costs for one variant but result in larger long-term savings for a second variant and for the product family as a whole. ©2012 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. Syst Eng 16 [ABSTRACT FROM AUTHOR]
    • Abstract:
      Copyright of Systems Engineering is the property of John Wiley & Sons, Inc. and its content may not be copied or emailed to multiple sites or posted to a listserv without the copyright holder's express written permission. However, users may print, download, or email articles for individual use. This abstract may be abridged. No warranty is given about the accuracy of the copy. Users should refer to the original published version of the material for the full abstract. (Copyright applies to all Abstracts.)
    • Author Affiliations:
      124M Technologies, One KENdall Square, Cambridge, MA 02139
      2Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Cambridge, MA 02139
    • ISSN:
      1098-1241
    • Accession Number:
      10.1002/sys.21223
    • Accession Number:
      87075079
  • Citations
    • ABNT:
      BOAS, R.; CAMERON, B. G.; CRAWLEY, E. F. Divergence and lifecycle offsets in product families with commonality. Systems Engineering, [s. l.], v. 16, n. 2, p. 175–192, 2013. DOI 10.1002/sys.21223. Disponível em: http://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&site=eds-live&db=asn&AN=87075079. Acesso em: 30 nov. 2020.
    • AMA:
      Boas R, Cameron BG, Crawley EF. Divergence and lifecycle offsets in product families with commonality. Systems Engineering. 2013;16(2):175-192. doi:10.1002/sys.21223
    • APA:
      Boas, R., Cameron, B. G., & Crawley, E. F. (2013). Divergence and lifecycle offsets in product families with commonality. Systems Engineering, 16(2), 175–192. https://doi.org/10.1002/sys.21223
    • Chicago/Turabian: Author-Date:
      Boas, Ryan, Bruce G. Cameron, and Edward F. Crawley. 2013. “Divergence and Lifecycle Offsets in Product Families with Commonality.” Systems Engineering 16 (2): 175–92. doi:10.1002/sys.21223.
    • Harvard:
      Boas, R., Cameron, B. G. and Crawley, E. F. (2013) ‘Divergence and lifecycle offsets in product families with commonality’, Systems Engineering, 16(2), pp. 175–192. doi: 10.1002/sys.21223.
    • Harvard: Australian:
      Boas, R, Cameron, BG & Crawley, EF 2013, ‘Divergence and lifecycle offsets in product families with commonality’, Systems Engineering, vol. 16, no. 2, pp. 175–192, viewed 30 November 2020, .
    • MLA:
      Boas, Ryan, et al. “Divergence and Lifecycle Offsets in Product Families with Commonality.” Systems Engineering, vol. 16, no. 2, June 2013, pp. 175–192. EBSCOhost, doi:10.1002/sys.21223.
    • Chicago/Turabian: Humanities:
      Boas, Ryan, Bruce G. Cameron, and Edward F. Crawley. “Divergence and Lifecycle Offsets in Product Families with Commonality.” Systems Engineering 16, no. 2 (June 2013): 175–92. doi:10.1002/sys.21223.
    • Vancouver/ICMJE:
      Boas R, Cameron BG, Crawley EF. Divergence and lifecycle offsets in product families with commonality. Systems Engineering [Internet]. 2013 Jun [cited 2020 Nov 30];16(2):175–92. Available from: http://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&site=eds-live&db=asn&AN=87075079