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Title: People in lean product development: the impact of human resource practices on development performance

Authors: Mareike Heinzen; Nicolas Höflinger

Addresses: University of Applied Sciences Koblenz, RheinAhrCampus, Joseph-Rovan-Allee 2, 53424 Remagen, Germany ' University of Mannheim, Business School, L5,5 68131 Mannheim, Germany

Abstract: For 25 years, Lean Product Development (LPD) has been discussed as a management concept that balances the antagonism of developing innovative products of high quality, while simultaneously coping with cost and time-to-market reduction. LPD tries to achieve this balance by using both a set of principles that have been proven to be successful and by emphasising human activity in the development process. To that end, this paper analyses the impact of different human resource practices - first, on the skills and the motivations of a company's developmental employees; and, second, on the LPD performance. 176 employees of development departments from 96 companies completed the questionnaire. The partial least squares analysis demonstrates that training, internal development and performance appraisal contribute significantly to performance in LPD processes. Interestingly, performance compensation does not show any impact. The construct of LPD performance itself is strongly influenced by the application of continuous improvement and the specification of customer value.

Keywords: lean principles; product development; human resource practices; performance; lean product development; human resource management; training; internal development; performance appraisal; performance compensation; continuous improvement; customer value.

DOI: 10.1504/IJPD.2017.085276

International Journal of Product Development, 2017 Vol.22 No.1, pp.38 - 64

Available online: 05 Jul 2017 *

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