Managing Communication in New Product Development Process: Virtual R&D Teams and Information Technology
Journal Article: ORG: Communications Flow (Topic) 10/2011;
Literature proves the importance of the role of information technology in increasing the effectiveness of virtual R&D teams’ communication for new product development. However, the factors that make information technology construct in a virtual R&D team are still ambiguous. Managers of virtual R&D teams for new product development do not know “which type of technology should be used”. To address the gap and answer the question, the paper presents a set of factors that make a construct that contribute to effective communication strategy for virtual R&D teams. The proposed construct has been modified based on the findings of a field survey. This work empirically examines the relationship between information technology construct and its factors by employing Structural Equation Modeling (SEM). A measurement model is built based on the 19 preliminary chosen factors that have been extracted from literature review. The result shows that 10 factors can make a technology construct. These 10 factors can be grouped into two different constructs, namely Web-based communication and Web-based data sharing. The study findings can help new product developers to concentrate on the main factors for leading effective communications among virtual R&D team members. In addition, this work provides a guideline for software developers to create appropriate tools for virtual R&D teams.