An early introduction to IRDG’s Lean Product Development (LPD) following a workshop at an AME Conference saw the Minteq team implement some of the LPD tools in the R&D laboratory in Cork. Visual workflow management and stand up meetings were easy, early wins, but in isolation, did not bring the desired enhanced efficiency to the innovation process.
We participated in the IRDG LPD programme to gain fresh insight into the overall process and how it could be effectively implemented. The programme offered us a disciplined, structured approach to better understand how to identify customers’ unspoken needs and desired outcomes. A key objective was to partner with customers to manage complexity within projects and to accelerate the new product development pipeline.
The front-end, customer discovery piece was a real game-changer for us. In the past, reacting to specific requests from the sales team or customer feedback was the main driver for development & innovation. However, by embedding a more in-depth approach to capturing the Voice of the Customer into our process, it has facilitated a greater understanding of our customers’ pain points, unmet and unspoken needs. This has enabled us to more closely map out our customers’ journey with our product development and evolution, identifying multiple solutions which benefit the customer and Minteq. Adopting this structured approach has also ensured higher quality and better developed concepts are entering the new product pipeline.
Through the programme and the support of the IDA, we were able to secure 3 additional in- house days with the programme mentor. This has helped to embed the learnings, encourage cross functional collaboration in innovation and supported our progress as a lean site and organisation.