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Factors Affecting the Use of Outside, Intermittent Resources during NPD

1 Northeastern University, Entrepreneurship and Innovation, Boston, USA
2 Babson College, Technology, Operations and Information Management, Wellesley, USA

International Journal of Innovation Science

ISSN: 1757-2223

Article publication date: 18 March 2014



Information technology, globalization, and digital design have all contributed to the changing composition of new product development (NPD). These developments have led to a paradigm shift where continuous resources can be replaced by outsourced resources that are used intermittently throughout the entire innovation process. These resources can be plugged into the project at opportune times thereby lowering fixed costs and speeding commercialization. However, this intermittent use of resources requires appropriate management actions. This study reports on longitudinal, ethnographic case research performed over the span of the product development cycle of two projects. We look at multiple factors that can influence the effective coordination of outside, intermittent resources on the project. We explore critical characteristics of intermittent resources employed by new ventures, focusing on project management, the product development process, and the role of technology enablers such as IT collaboration. We find that technology's role in coordination of resources is less important than the robustness of interaction. Our qualitative study suggests that only when skilled project coordination is combined with precise communication can intermittent resources be effective. We conclude the article with the limitations and directions for further research.


Marion, T. and Fixson, S. (2014), "Factors Affecting the Use of Outside, Intermittent Resources during NPD", International Journal of Innovation Science, Vol. 6 No. 1, pp. 1-18.



Emerald Group Publishing Limited

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