As the digital age reaches a crescendo, companies looking to launch wireless B2B innovations face twin hurdles. The first concerns the product itself and its acceptance by stakeholders, investors, and end-users, all of which have traditionally been the primary focus of NPD (new product development). The second is the seamless integration of the product into the broader ecosystem. In this piece, we’ll highlight why the success of a product depends as much on the second hurdle as the first, presenting a single strategy for successfully clearing both.
At Pivot International, we are a one-source global leader in DFM-driven product design, engineering, manufacturing, and supply chain management. We bring more than 50 years of proven experience in helping companies launch successful wireless B2B innovations by turning innovative ideas into profitable realities. With NPD expertise that spans fourteen industries, a diverse suite of the latest digital technologies, and 320,000 square feet of domestic and offshore manufacturing capability, we work collaboratively with clients to position their companies for market leadership.
Why Traditional Product Launches Have Posed Relatively Little Risk
Traditionally, launching and adopting a new product — provided it fell within the category of a company’s existing product line or within a buyer’s currently deployed assets — was regarded as a fairly straightforward, low-risk-to-return proposition. This was because the product was being introduced into a known market, and customers could be confident before the fact of functional fit within the broader product ecosystem. Moreover, the launch of such a product generally didn’t involve significant changes to organizational structures, talent pools, business processes, or business models. While threats of market failure will always be a concern for businesses, product launch has traditionally posed relatively little internal threat. This meant that developers and customers were free to focus mainly on the development of the product itself. Any internal challenges and ripple effects of this activity could be reasonably left to HR, accounting departments, marketing teams, and so on.
Why the Launch of Wireless B2B Innovations Poses Increased Risk
Unlike traditional, low-complexity, or consumer products, the launch and adoption of wireless B2B innovations (especially for medical and industrial markets) can significantly impact companies’ organizational structures, talent pool, business processes, and even business models, raising the stakes exponentially.
For example, to successfully solve connectivity range, device size, weight, and power consumption challenges, companies must strategically mix and match product solutions to use case — necessitating a partner with a diverse suite of the latest digital technologies. These solutions include WiFi 6, LoRa, Bluetooth, NB-IoT, CAT-M, and sensor technologies, each representing strengths and limitations. At Pivot, our design and engineering teams have a deep grasp of which combination of product solutions will best control costs for our customers without cutting corners on safety standards, product requirements, functionality, performance, and UX.
The Plot Thickens
Making strategic tradeoffs between product solutions is a steep challenge, but it’s only the beginning. Companies and their NPD partners must also make strategic tradeoffs between networks and device applications, factor in how the product will interface with complementary devices, conform to industry standards and regulations, and impact every aspect of their customers’ organizations. This is where the plot truly thickens. McKinsey and Co. have found that when it comes to wireless B2B innovations, resistance to change represents the biggest barrier to adoption at scale, especially for enterprises. Why? Because companies aren’t looking to adopt products but to improve processes. In short, companies and their NPD partners who come together to launch such products must approach the task with a sophisticated understanding of the broader ecosystem in which the product will be deployed.
A Single Solution for Clearing Twin Hurdles and Mitigating Risk
DFM (Design For Manufacture) is a specialized competency that takes a holistic view of product development and a product’s deployment in the broader ecosystem. In other words, DFM enables companies to clear both hurdles (stakeholder acceptance and ecosystem integration) with a single approach that dramatically reduces the elevated risks of launching a wireless B2B product.
DFM is widely recognized as the single most effective strategy for ensuring that product design is optimized for scalable manufacture. But it brings a wealth of other benefits. By factoring in variables that include everything from use case, UX, supply chain, distribution, and adoption, it ensures no stone is left unturned. This allows for the creation of a comprehensive plan of attack that fuels superior design and ensures flawless functional fit in contexts of adoption and deployment. Last, DFM exerts downward selective pressures by strategically narrowing the field of cost-effective options. The result is a more highly differentiated and innovative design.
Looking to Launch a Wireless B2B Product?
If you’re gearing up to capitalize on accelerating trends in digital adoption, Pivot is the partner you’ve been looking for. Our world-class DFM teams are the driving force behind some of the most successful and award-winning wireless innovations on the market, making us the go-to partner for companies worldwide. If you’d like to learn more about how we can help you successfully scale, contact us today for a complimentary consultation.