Full citation

Cooper, R.G., Edgett, S.J., & Kleinschmidt, E.J. (2004). Benchmarking Best NPD Practices--II.Research Technology Management, 23(2), 117-127.

Format: Peer-reviewed article

Type: Research — Non-experimental

Experience level of reader: Fundamental

Annotation: This article explores new product development success as it relates to strategy implementation and resource allocation. Results of a survey of 105 U.S. businesses reveals that success increases along with the presence of a new product development strategy, which is reflected in spending decisions. Further, best performers tend to undertake more innovative projects and allocate more resources to project teams.

Setting(s) to which the reported activities/findings are relevant: Large business, Small business (less than 500 employees), University

Knowledge user(s) to whom the piece of literature may be relevant: Manufacturers, Researchers

Knowledge user level addressed by the literature: Organization

This article uses the Commercial Devices and Services version of the NtK Model

Primary Findings

Method: Six key components are highly correlated with new product development success. 1) The role of the new product development project must be defined in terms of their contribution to achieving organizational goals. 2) Strategic arenas (markets, product areas, industry sectors or technologies) should be clearly identified and defined. 3) Longer term goals for new products should be defined early on. 4) The organization should have a long-term view of its new product development efforts. 5) Earmarking buckets of resources (funds or person days) targeted at different project types helps to ensure strategic alignment of new product development with organizational goals. 6) Product/technology road maps should be in place to help management make sure that the capabilities are in place to achieve their objective when needed.
Survey of 105 U.S. companies
Occurrence of finding within the model: Step 1.5, Step 1.4


  • Resource deficiency is a major problem for many organizations, despite the fact that the provision of sufficient resources is one of the stronger factors distinguishing best from worst performers. In particular, marketing and sales often find that they lack needed resources, while technical resources are deemed barely adequate.
    Survey of 105 U.S. companies
    Occurrence of finding within the model: Tip 1.3, Step 4.9, Step 4.7
  • Knowledge translation efforts should be mindful of the project valuation metrics internally used by transfer partners. For example, one company accepts projects based on a review of strategic fit, ability to increase revenue, ability to increase market share, degree of product differentiation, and technological advancement.
    Survey of 105 U.S. companies
    Occurrence of finding within the model: KTA Step 1.A, KTA Step 2.A, KTA Step 3.A
  • Best performers address the following elements of a portfolio management strategy: 1) Seek a portfolio that contains high value-to-the-business projects. Identify those projects by seeking better information, particularly market, competitive and pricing information, early on in the process. 2) Seek the right balance of projects (long-term versus short-term; high vs low risk; etc). Seek the right number of projects so that available resources can meet the demands of accepted projects.
    Survey of 105 U.S. companies
    Occurrence of finding within the model: Stage 1
  • Too much multi-tasking occurs among members of new product development teams — too many projects, too much other work, a lack of focus, and a lack of a dedicated effort to their new product development projects. The results are quite negative — the ability to focus and dedicate resources is one of the important drivers of new product development performance. Resource allocation and focus must be a top priority if the goals of reduced time to market and quality of execution are to be realized.
    Survey of 105 U.S. companies
    Occurrence of finding within the model: Tip 1.3, Step 4.9, Step 4.7