To accelerate product innovation.
At its annual general meeting held earlier this week, Breville CEO, Jim Clayton advised shareholders that the company has opened an offshore development centre to further enhance its product development process.
Working directly with manufacturing partners to develop range down products or products that are keyed off an original set of innovations but may include a subset, or a variation, the team in Sydney plays an oversight and quality assurance role during the entire process.
“Breville’s traditional product development process was to put one designer and one engineer on the new product project from cradle to grave. Looking back over the last 10 years, this process was clearly successful. The disadvantage, however, was that the more innovative the product, the longer it took to develop, like the Oracle, which took five years,” Clayton said.
“Beginning the day after I started at Breville, we began experimenting with an accelerated process, which meant allocating larger teams to a single project. We used this new approach successfully with the Creatista and the Oracle Touch, releasing these products much earlier than planned. With both development approaches in our toolbox, we have more flexibility in how we deploy resources to drive innovation.
“While this accelerated approach has enabled us to reduce our time to market for innovation-heavy projects, it still left one challenge, which is how to accelerate expanding our range within a category, while at the same time disrupting other categories with new innovations. To solve this problem, we began building an offshore development centre 18 months ago. The Compact Convection Smart Oven (pictured) is our first product developed through this new process.
“From a structure perspective, the Sydney team focuses on breakthrough innovations. Once they develop the innovation into a flagship product, the Sydney team specifies how this innovation should be pulled through the product range.
“Our product development organisation is now able to align all three approaches against our innovation and commercialisation pipeline. By applying the right processes to the right project, for a given R&D spend, we are able to assign our most talented resources to our most challenging problems, while also attaining the benefit of scale to maximise our collective output in the shortest amount of time,” he added.