Cost impact analysis for requirements management
Competition and the associated challenges in the automotive industry are increasing. Products are becoming more complex to satisfy growing needs of the consumers and products need to be cheaper and produced quicker. The automotive industry is responding to these challenges, by developing products within collaborative and extended enterprises across diverse geographical location. New customer requirements imply high frequency changes to the initial design requirements. Current unstructured approaches are not robust to deal with the volume and complexity of the nature of product changes in this environment. The aim of this research is to develop two methodologies, one for requirements extraction methodology (REXTRAM) and the second cost impact analysis methodology (CIAM) within the automotive industry. The research was conducted in a collaborative development environment between automotive Original Equipment Manufacturers and Tier 1 Suppliers. The thesis has proposed two novel methodologies. The first methodology (REXTRAM) extracts relevant data from product design documents and industrial domain experts. REXTRAM generates as output a repository of requirements, design parameters and their constraints. The second methodology (CIAM) identifies two types of changes (constraints changing on requirements and constraints changing on design parameters). CIAM combines matrixes and business (cost and time) driver rules to determine incurred (delta) cost of requirement changes. The matrixes exhibit three types of relationships: requirements to requirements; requirements to design parameters and design parameters to design parameters relationships. Case study approach and independent expert are used to illustrate the application and the capability of both methodologies. In this way this research proposes a tested and validated set of methodologies for the extraction of relevant data and the cost impact analysis of requirement changes and its challenges. The resultant methodologies have widespread application in the context of complex mechanical designs. The research also identifies future research directions in the relevant areas.