27 July 2008

Call for papers: Strategic Management of Warranty and Quality during Product Development

Call for papers: Strategic Management of Warranty and Quality during Product Development

A special issue of International Journal of Technology Management

Warranty is a phenomenon experienced by business. Quality and reliability is what the customer should experience. The product development process is the connecting link that should be tuned to understand the customer experience and should be geared to drive a better quality product in terms of customer quality acceptance and lower future expected warranty. This whole process of managing warranty into acceptable market quality is warranty management.

Current literature in product warranty management classifies the developments in this field into three generations. There has been a good article published in Warranty Week Magazine by D.N.P. Murthy, Wallace Blishcke et al. on these generations and the current status quo. The first generation deals with warranty information management. The second generation deals with modifying product design and improving product reliability as a response to warranty data reported. The third generation, which is yet to crystallise as a formal method-set, envisions viewing warranty as a strategic organisational behaviour.

The first part of this special issue is a step towards compiling a formal body of knowledge (methods, strategies, systems) for strategic warranty and quality management during product development process. We invite papers that represent the warranty and quality considerations during the product development cycle, covering the empirical modelling techniques, theoritical developments including rigorous validation schemes and implementation issues and solutions. This compilation is intended to help organisations focus on their warranty metrics by viewing warranty from a strategic perspective during their product development process in the near and long term.

The issue targets the following broad objectives to be addressed:
  • To coalesce quality-based policy level objectives with product development, design and supplier strategy
  • To consider warranty as an attribute of negotiation along with other customer exciters, thereby assisting in the synthesis of product, target setting and in achieving a balance in product attributes while maintaining product quality
  • To relate quality information with physical phenomenon and develop physics-based predictive science models for product development
  • To knit warranty feedback and analytics with Enterprise Decision Management at an operational level
Suitable topic areas include, but are not limited to:
  • Impact of design and product development on product quality
  • Predictive science modelling for expected warranty
  • Functional modelling - study of energy loss/gain/transformation and its impact on reliability
  • Physics based and statistical techniques to uncover dependencies in a product and study of correlations of such dependencies to the expected warranty.
  • Effect of product-packaging and product-design on subsystem warranty and associated issues and solutions
  • Warranty modelling in product domain
  • Product structure decomposition techniques for warranty analysis
  • Fault tree encoding techniques
  • Mapping product structure to failure reporting structure
  • Formalisms in quality-related corporate decision making processes
  • Quality projection, tracking and target setting; axiomatic quality, DFSS, quality in view of product-complexity
  • Policy strategy based on analysed warranty and quality planning
  • Methods to bind product design quality and supplier quality
  • Mapping product content to supplier specifications to model expected quality of product
  • Methods to bind subsystem quality to supplier quality
  • Impact of technology and interoperable systems on strategic quality
  • Optimising quality feedback process/time/accuracy/efficiencies
  • Intangibles related to quality
  • Quantifying intangibles (resale, perception)
  • Models to capture customer behaviour/satisfaction
  • Methods to build positive perception, credibility
  • Warranty as an attribute of trade-off in multi-objective multidisciplinary corporate negotiations
  • Math-based techniques to perform trade-off
  • Physics based trade-off models (physical relations to product content and packaging, performance etc.)
  • Translating product QRD (quality, reliability and durability) to warranty attributes (for forecasting warranty)
  • Robust quality (insensitive to handling range)
  • Product decomposition engineering
  • Warranty sensitivity models to product content, manufacturing, sourcing (evaluating quality elasticities)
  • Optimal product content for product families/architectures - impact on long term corporate strategic quality
  • Quality control - relation to process capability and impact of manufacturing, field test, reporting
  • Quality/warranty information collation techniques, automated data processing systems and strategies
  • Quality packaging for an integrated enterprise [wrapping part planning, inventory, development, sales, warranty under one umbrella]; non-conventional methodologies for quality modeling and analysis
  • Quality-based design feedback process - from service technician to designer to policy maker
  • Quality glidepath and relation to product/process scalability addressing how the expected warranty fluctuates during product development
  • Quality from a business angle: warranty promotions and its expected impact on sales as a key enabler for product planning
Related Areas:
  • Supplier-manufacturer quality equations, collaborative methods and environments. sourcing, market decisions and their impact on quality
  • Impact of product development quality on emerging markets; warranty strategy as an organisational behavior
  • Critical systems warranty (impact-severity driven methods and decisions); electronic systems warranty
  • Impact of technology on warranty and overall quality
  • Warranty time study: warranty service studies and analysis during different time-windows; techniques for launch-time warranty control to achieve better first-time-quality (FTQ)
Any other relevant topical area

Submission deadline: 30 November, 2008
Notification of Acceptance: 30 December, 2008
Submission of Final Manuscript: 28 February, 2009

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