Aeronautics

Management and acceleration of an innovation program
Case study
10/20/2014

Context and challenges

Amid fierce competition on the Aeronautics market, a leading equipment manufacturer on several global markets wanted to demonstrate its initiative and assert its capacity to innovate independently from aircraft manufacturers, in particular by capitalizing on airlines’ focus on reducing fuel consumption.
For six months, as part of a joint venture with another leading global equipment manufacturer, the group developed an innovative solution that offered significant savings on fuel during take-off and landing.
The group’s Chief Executive Officer (CEO), who was conscious of the competitive advantage offered by this product, as well as the environmentally responsible image associated with such savings, asked for it to be introduced at the next Paris Air Show, one year later.
Due to the divergence in timelines, in addition to the main development team, a special team was formed to ensure the success of the air show demonstration.

Approach and methodology

Our team worked in three areas:
Initially, supporting the project manager in managing an international team and organizing work with the joint venture partners through the management of dashboards and monitoring of actions, sync meetings and alert systems.

Then, ensuring operational support in three stages:
• Drafting the Statement of Work (SoW), a detailed scoping paper, which was shared and approved prior to the program launch. It was divided into different work packages
• Producing, managing and optimizing schedules to reduce the overall lead time (parallelization of tasks, removal of buffers, estimate of real lead times, etc.)
• Managing risks: identifying, assessing criticality and level of control, creating a specific action plan for each of the risks identified, updating plan on a monthly basis.

Finally, defining the strategy for equipment tests to maximize their efficiency, and organizing the related logistics.

Results

Upon completion of the project, the product was successfully introduced to the public and professionals at the Paris Air Show. A collaboration agreement was signed with a major aircraft manufacturer to continue the product’s development.
This program allowed the group to demonstrate its capacity for innovation as a systems and equipment manufacturer.