Thorn Security

Thorn Security, part of the Thorn EMI Group,  had suffered a long-term decline is their installed base of intruder alarms. To senior management this was indeed alarming and the main cause was unknown. Research into the demographics and scale of the problem were completed in a very short timescale and vitally a way found to talk to competitors who were offering better deals.IMG_4992 PS

Research showed that a particular competitor was gaining most of the lost business and they did it by briefing their new business sales team to look for old bell/sounder covers on buildings. They could determine how old the installation was and could estimate what price the customer was paying for their system. Over a number of years inflation had increased the cost to well above the present day cost for a new system – technology had reduce the costs as well.  It was arranged for 20,000 new style covers to be installed on all older installations and the most at risk customers to be offered new deals. The decline stopped and new business wins doubled by following the competitor’s strategy of targeting old systems. They say imitation is the best form of flattery. Researching quickly and introducing a solution with equal speed not only is more effective, but it gives competitors less time to react.

Arenson Group plc

As told by Colin WatsonV3 004

“The Arenson Group were a member of Skandinavisk Industries, a top 5 European group of Office Furniture business’s. An ongoing issue was the planning and control of new product development.

Although in the UK the process was well managed we wanted a process that could more effectively measure our results, speed up decision making and ensure investment decisions were justified.innovation-practices-metrics-and-performance-by-kenneth-kahn-phd-of-vcus-da-vinci-center-for-innovation-13-638

I attended an induction programme with Bob Cooper in Copenhagen which our Group arranged. Bob was the innovator of the Stage Gate model where a product or system development process is divided into stages separated by gates. To progress to a further stage and pass a gate, certain requirements must be achieved. Becoming fully trained in the process it was introduced to the company and improved the selection of the best product ideas, controlled costs and improved time to market.”

The control of product life-cycles is fundamental for a successful business. Investment in product design with well planned products that gives the customer new benefits on a consistent basis will retain their loyalty and speed to market gains competitive advantage.