Measuring knowledge in the new product development process

Fiona Lettice, Norman Roth, Ingo Forstenlechner

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

39 Citations (Scopus)


Purpose – To present a measurement framework to capture the importance of the use of knowledge within the new product development (NPD) process.

Design/methodology/approach – A literature review enabled 200 product development measures to be compiled. These were categorised into six dimensions: stakeholder contribution, operating context, reuse, invention, exploitation, and NPD performance. Four companies applied selected measures and assessed the cube for its ability to improve measurement and management of their NPD process. This process refined the approach. A web-based questionnaire (with 130 responses) assessed how a wider population perceived their performance and capability to measure performance in each of the six dimensions.

Findings – Respondents consider themselves capable of delivering good products and services, but are less confident in their ability to manage and measure knowledge reuse, invention and exploitation activities.

Research limitations/implications – Full implementation of the measurement cube was not possible. Further research should assess the comprehensiveness, applicability and usefulness of the approach in more detail.

Practical implications/implications – Introduction of the measurement cube and measures in the six dimensions identified would enable companies to go beyond traditional financial measures for their NPD processes and move towards a more performance-oriented culture.

Originality/value – This paper synthesises the results from many other isolated studies on NPD metrics. In addition, it focuses on the measurement of the NPD process from a knowledge perspective, providing an integrating framework (the measurement cube), which is unique.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)217-241
Number of pages25
JournalInternational Journal of Productivity and Performance Management
Issue number3/4
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2006


  • Knowledge management
  • Product development

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