Are you ready to collaborate with your customers on product design?
In its 2018 predictions, analyst firm IDC prognosticated the following will happen by 2019:
50% of manufacturers will be collaborating directly with customers and consumers regarding new and improved product designs through cloud-based crowd-sourcing, virtual reality, and product virtualization, realizing up to 25% improvement in product success rates. (This is prediction #5 in the IndustryWeek article discussing IDC’s Top 10 predictions.)
2018 is well over halfway through. Do you feel like you are—or will be—among the 50% of manufacturers who can collaborate successfully with customers for product design and development? The thought of trying to manage this collaboration via scanned documents, spreadsheets, and multiple meetings seems overwhelming. Modern technology can help you get the efficiency and quality control you need to make customer collaboration faster and easier for everyone involved.
- Configure price quote software helps your sales people know exactly what options are available, and makes it easier for them to facilitate a customer conversation to build exactly the product they are looking for.
- Cloud-based enterprise resource planning (ERP) software provides the flexibility you need to automate new business processes or quickly adjust them if they aren’t working well.
- Integrated document management and social collaboration tools combine employee communications with business processes, efficiently bringing information from your external customers and internal organization together.
Collaborating with customers on product design opens a whole new level of complexity in your operations. Figure out how to accommodate this new way of doing business today and position yourself not only as the vendor that makes the products your customers use, but as the partner in your customers’ success.