Follow the right steps for evaluating platform methodology
By Paul Delvy, Intel Corp.CommsDesign.comOct 20, 2005
Using a structured approach, analysts can identify and select high pay-off alternatives of proposed products prior to engaging in costly product development. Up-front investigation, collaboration, and modeling will help service providers make the correct choices resulting in the optimal relationship between capital and operational expenses for themselves and their end users. Even the smallest of these decisions can have a major impact on the life cycle costs for an entire system or a targeted component within that system over a ten-year period.
Following the described process gives practitioners a methodology to evaluate prime and alternative value propositions for the optimal fit for themselves and their customers. The initial focus is on identifying the correct value proposition for the project. Life-cycle analysis helps quantify various alternative implementations of that value proposition. Total cost of ownership (TCO) is used as a baseline for the analysis.
Value is identified by understanding and fulfilling end users' needs. These users typically have various problems to solve with their data processing and communications equipment. These problems are often summarized as providing the correct product and service at the correct time for the correct cost. Ultimately, the selection will be measured by their finance organization looking for the correct balance between capital and operational expenditures. Value to the end user is reducing the cost of pain on their organization today and helping them attain better services in the future.
Understanding the users' current and future issues, service providers can work closely with the equipment makers and suppliers to define the optimal solution for immediate needs and leave the correct expansion capabilities for future requirements. Selecting a building-block provider with a robust list of technical choices makes the development time shorter and options more amenable.
This partner can provide architectural, design, implementation, testing, and certification expertise. Once the value to the end user is understood, it should be identified as far back into the design process as possible. The inverse of looking for the root case of a problem, the roots of the value must be identified as early in the specification, design, and implementation phases as possible. Once these key points are identified, the development team can make maximum use of them as the product and service is implemented.
The value of the product and service are identified with the product's initial concept. Each member of the value chain contributes their unique value, optimized for the final solution. Selecting and fully utilizing a robust set of building blocks, the product integrator blends the right features, performance, cost, and scalability from the outset. If the end users' goals are met, the entire value chain is balanced.
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