Prioritizing Ongoing Projects During Execution
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New product development (NPD) organizations pursue many projects in parallel, in order to achieve broader product lines (mass customization) and higher market share (e.g., Reinertsen 1997; Ulrich and Eppinger 2003; Cusumano and Nobeoka 1998). In multi-project environments, it happens commonly that projects compete for access to a scarce resource.1 The processing time that each project spends at the resource is much shorter than the projects’ total duration. Examples of such scarce resources are equipment (such as an acoustic analyzer or wind channel in automotive design) or uniquely specialized areas of expertise, such as a critical department (e.g., a testing lab), or individuals (e.g., an engineer mastering a highly specialized procedure). Such scarce resources, although representing only a small part of the project’s total duration, can become bottlenecks, and resource allocation is a critical factor for profitability (Adler et al. 1995).
KeywordsOptimal Policy Scarce Resource Project Selection Delay Cost Index Policy
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