The target of a lean enterprise is to provide value for customers and other stakeholders. In quickly changing markets, this means a constant refocusing on the customers’ needs. The producing industry achieves this by innovative products and short product life cycles. In order to cope with these, a demand for both efficient and effective product development arises. Efficiency
can only be reached if all activities and resources match the specific circumstances of a design phase. Effectiveness requires the accomplishment of well-understood requirements expressed by the customer and other stakeholders.
As each of the phases has a different set of circumstances, and requirements are under constant surveillance, the product development effort has to be flexible to both the changing customer’s definition of value – or the improving understanding thereof – and the transition through the product development phases. True flexibility means flexibility of all resources, including human. Thus, the organizational structure of a given product development team is continuously changing. In order to provide valuable output, and to receive valuable input, a given entity within this continuously changing project relies heavily on up-to-date information about whom to communicate with, in what way, and about what. In this information producing environment, understanding both content and process type information is vital.