Tracking the Design Trajectory of an Innovative Electronics Engineering Project
The research described in this paper was carried out at GEC-Plessey Semiconductors (GPS) in Plymouth, England, and describes a study of industry practice and problems associated with the management of engineering design teams within the company. GPS designs and fabricates complex, silicon, integrated circuits—for example, embedded microprocessors for cellnet telephones—and competes successfully in this volatile global market. GPS is a ‘fast cycle time’ company (Meyer, 1993), applying total quality management principles in the use of self-managing work teams, continuous process improvement, and participative management (Jablonski, 1991). Its workforce is therefore accustomed to working in an environment of rapid change.
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