“Data” has been a business buzzword on the lips of almost every corporate consultant for at least the last decade. And while the prophets of data had many believers, the concept of data-driven operations for most companies has tended to remain more aspirational abstraction than concrete reality.

But with the acceleration of digital evolution hasted by the global pandemic, this is rapidly changing. And just in time. Data-driven technologies have the potential to solve or attenuate many of today’s most pressing problems. (Indeed, data is a key component for building more secure, resilient, efficient, and sustainable supply chains.) Moreover, leaders in digital evolution are far better equipped to create orders of value that offer them and their customers a significant competitive edge.

At Pivot International, we are global leaders in data-driven NPD. We bring nearly fifty years of proven experience and extensive investment in the latest digital technologies, including machine learning, AI, blockchain, cloud computing, and digitally twinned, mirror-mounted SMT lines. Data-supported capabilities are baked into every phase of our one-source model. This enables us to optimize every aspect of the broader NPD process. How? By mining data-driven insights throughout each phase of development. This, in turn, drives process improvements, extracts maximum value, and delivers competitive innovations for our clients.

For enterprise organizations especially, full-scale digital evolution remains a steep challenge. Even so, more and more companies are trodding this path, and as they do, a new future of data-driven NPD is underway. How will such a future look for companies and their clients? What follows is a high-level answer to this question.

Data Ubiquity

NPD is rarely undertaken in a “data ubiquitous” context. Even when data is part of the NPD equation, it’s seldom threaded through every decision, interaction, and process. This means that potential problems — and valuable opportunities — are routinely missed or revealed only after sunk costs have accrued. But as more and more product developers reenvision project workflows, team functions, and development processes through the lens of integrative data solutions, problems can be solved (and opportunities seized) much faster.

Real-Time Insights

The limitations of legacy technology and architectural structures mean that many product developers utilize only the smallest fraction of data from IoT-enabled devices in real-time. These companies have not yet attained the capacity to maintain process speed while also analyzing and applying real-time, data-driven insights to use case questions. But as digital evolution picks up speed, more and more real-time data analysis, insight, and application will power NPD to benefit customers, employees, and partners.

Ready-Made Data Stores

Though unstructured or semi-structured data drive the proliferation of data, most usable data is structured using relational database tools. Companies that have yet to reach critical mass with digital evolution rely on relational database tools to organize unstructured or semi-structured data. The result is that data engineers must invest considerable time in the manual exploration of data sets to structure and make use of them. Simply, unstructured and semi-structured data stores are extremely time-consuming to “bake” for meaningful consumption. (They are also error-prone and impossible to scale.)

But as more flexible, efficient, scalable ways of organizing data become more ready-made (“pre-baked”) through digital evolution, product developers can much more quickly detect the relationships between different kinds of data sets. This, in turn, affords timely and powerful insights that fuel innovation and promote the development of data products such as digital twins. At Pivot, digital twinning allows us to run sophisticated simulations that more accurately predict risk scenarios while also revealing novel possibilities.

Data Ecosystem Expansion

Data-sharing with subsidiaries, clients, and competitors is rare even when product developers achieve a critical mass of digital evolution within their organization. In the future, it will become the norm for data-driven product developers to create, contribute to, and profit from a more encompassing data ecosystem. This exchange of data will drive synergistic insights and highly differentiated data products.

Prioritization of Privacy and Security

Data privacy and security are crucial for product developers (particularly those with a manufacturing arm). (The manufacturing industry is currently facing a virtual epidemic of cybercrime.) In companies still creeping toward achieving critical mass in digital evolution, privacy and security are often reduced to compliance issues and consumer concerns. But for data-driven product development companies, data security and privacy are regarded as independent and highly valuable areas of competency. (For both a strong business case and ethical argument are made.) At Pivot, centralized coordination and oversight are baked into our technology stack and business model to provide our partners maximum data security.

Looking for a Data-Driven NPD Partner to Support Your Market Success?

If you’re gearing up to launch a new product and seeking an industry leader in digital evolution, Pivot can help. With advanced NPD and DFM experience across fourteen industries and six markets, 320,000 square feet of scalable manufacturing capability (offshore and domestic), and innovative supply chain solutions, we’ll take you from proof-of-concept to successful launch. Contact us today to learn more about our data-driven, highly collaborative approach to developing award-winning products!