Purpose – The purpose of this paper is to investigate how research and development (R&D) collaboration takes place for complex new products in the automotive sector. The research aims to give guidelines to increase the effectiveness of such collaborations. Design/methodology/approach – The methodology used to investigate this issue was grounded theory. The empirical data were collected through a mixture of interviews and questionnaires. The resulting inducted conceptual models were subsequently validated in industrial workshops. Findings – The findings show that frontloading of the collaborative members was a major issue in managing successful R&D collaborations. Research limitations/implications – The limitation of this research is that it is only based in the German automotive industry. Practical implications – Practical implications have come out of this research. Models and guidelines are given to help make a success of collaborative projects and their potential impacts on time, cost and quality metrics. Originality/value – Frontloading is not often studied in a collaborative manner; it is normally studied within just one organisation. This study has novel value because it has involved a number of different members throughout the supplier network.
- automotive industry
- new products
- research and development
- supplier relations
Binder, M., Gust, P., & Clegg, B. (2008). The importance of collaborative frontloading in automotive supply networks. Journal of Manufacturing Technology Management, 19(3), 315-331. https://doi.org/10.1108/17410380810853759