Market Research and Project Management

Market Research
Design addresses itself to the need.
- Charles Eames
Market Research
How to Conduct a Market Analysis
1. Problem Definition
a) What are the major objectives (review objective
tree) of the customer need?
b) Are you developing a new product or solving a
problem in an existing product?
c) In one sentence and in your own words, define
the problem at-hand.
d) Who is your customer, and why would they
want/need to buy the product (e.g., time saver,
utility, unique value)?
e) How are you going to go about getting your
product to customers? (e.g., development cost,
time, manufacturing, production investment, etc.)?
How to Conduct a Market Analysis
2. Develop a strategy
• important to set plan for search process
• looking through every library reference book
is inefficient waste of time
• searching accomplished by:
a) identifying keywords
b) writing a plan
c) information checklist
Information Checklist
c. Industry
a. Products
i. Trends
i. Product names
ii. Labor costs
ii. Patents
iii. Market size
iii. Pricing
iv. Industry facts
iv. Parts breakdown
d. Market information
v. Product features
i. Market reports
vi. Development time
ii. Market share of major
b. Companies
companies in industry
iii. Target markets of major
i. Major players
ii. Company financials for
iv. Demographics:
major players
-Annual reports
-Geographic location
-10K reports
-Political/social/cultural factors
e. Consumer trends
Typical Market Research Tools
• Customer Surveys
- least sophisticated
• “Mall” Intercepts
- more sophisticated
• Focus Groups
- most sophisticated
User Surveys
• Can be used as an element of market
research to help determine market size,
price sensitivity, etc.
• Also extremely useful to determine customer
wants and needs > Voice of the Customer
(QFD – more on this later)
Developing a User Survey
• Who are your “users”?
• Determine what information you need (ICE project
• Develop a list of UNBIASED questions
• Order the questions to avoid leading the user
• If you must ask a leading question, leave it until
late in the survey
• Consider who will be your audience
• Consider how you will run your survey
- mail or other passive methods < 2% response
- you need to active/direct surveys to get the
information you need
Project Management
Delay always breeds danger and to
protract [draw out or lengthen in time] a
great design is often to ruin it.
- Miguel de Cervantes Saavedra
Project Management
Project Success Factors
Importance of Project Management
Project Management Considerations
Resourcing (human and financial)
Organizational Chart
Gantt Chart
• “Timeline” for complex projects or if various
project parts are interdependent
• 2D plot
– horizontal axis is time—measured in blocks of
days, weeks, or months
– vertical axis contains tasks to be completed or
individuals responsible for those tasks
• When a task is completed it is shaded in on
the Gantt chart so that current progress can
be determined at any time
Gantt Chart
Steps to Creating a Gantt Chart
Identify the tasks needed to complete the
Estimate the time required to complete
each task
Determine the sequence in which the tasks
must be scheduled
Identify deadlines
What is the “critical path”?
Resources, subprojects, etc. can be added
if necessary
Laws of Time Estimation
– From Design Concepts for Engineers (Horenstein, 2002),
p. 86
• Everything takes longer than expected.
• If you’ve worked on something similar before,
estimate the amount of time required to finish the
task. The actual amount of time required will be
about four times as long.
• If you’ve never worked on something similar before,
estimate the amount of time required to finish the
task. The actual amount of time required will be
equal to the next highest time unit: Something
estimated to take an hour will really take a day;
something estimated to take a day will take a week,
Breakout to discuss and begin your…
• Project problem statement
• Gantt Chart
• User Survey/Market Research
Develop 3 Gantt charts with at least 10
tasks per chart for the following:
Getting ready for school in the morning (remember to eat breakfast)
AND choose one of:
– hosting a Thanksgiving dinner for 8 guests—don’t forget to cook the
turkey or pumpkin pie!
– hosting an evening party for 30 friends, complete with snacks and
beverages, events, and clean-up
– a canoeing expedition in Northern Ontario with several friends
AND choose one of:
completion of a prototype of an automobile powered from fuel cells
development of the course material for APSC 381
creation of a computer simulation for a new brewery
designing and building a statue of Principal Leggett
scouting out a new region for profitable ore deposits
networking all of the computers in the ILC
design of an electric hairdryer
Exercise (45 min)
• Do a market analysis on how to improve
traffic flow on campus
– Remember pedestrians, buses, cars, and safety
• You may leave the building to complete this