Managing Interfaces: A Key to Rapid Product and Service Development
Issue 2, 1991

Today, innovation contributes as much to protecting profits as cost containment. Indeed, many companies risk corporate failure unless they produce the right products or services at the right time. To keep up with their innovative competitors, both manufacturing and service industries recognize the need to encourage ever-closer interaction between groups with different skills. For example, rapid product development requires manufacturing and marketing tradeoffs as early as possible. Unfortunately, the necessary skills are typically found in different functions of the organization - and managing efficient and effective cross-functional cooperation is notoriously difficult.