RELEVANCE OF VALUE ENGINEERING TECHNIQUES IN A NEW PRODUCT DEVELOPMENT

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RELEVANCE OF VALUE ENGINEERING TECHNIQUES IN A NEW PRODUCT DEVELOPMENT

ABSTRACT

1.0 INTRODUCTION
1.1 GENERAL OVERVIEW

The need to produce quality goods and services at a minimum cost possible so as to maximize profit has been a major goal of manufacturers and producers of goods, at this instance, it means that there should be a systematic and scientific approach. In doing this, this is the need for value engineering techniques. Value engineering techniques is a systematic effort aimed in improving the value of a product, project or system and optimize availability performance and other critical factors to meet the customers expectations.
According to Andrew (2001), value engineering has two primary elements (i) To deliver function at a minimum cost (ii) To use group brainstorming and consensus to broaden the solution space and avoid narrow thinking value which can improve by reduction in the life cycle cost (LCC) and by an increase in customers worth or customer acceptance, the action of value Engineering require studies in the calculation of a product (LCC) where focused on the product total cost.

1.2 BACKGROUND OF THE STUDY
Unilever Nigeria Plc, was incorporated on the 4th of December 1948 under the name of P.B Nicholas Company Limited to take over the soap making activities of Mr. P.B Nicholas who had some years prior to that established a factor for that purpose. In the company was formally incorporated in England and became a public company.
Following the merger of the company in 1976 the company’s name was changed form Lever Brothers Nigeria Plc to Unilever Nigeria Plc, it is pertinent to note that after the 1st incorporation in 1948, new factory buildings were constructed and modern soap making equipments installed at Aba thereby creating one of the earlier major industries in Nigeria. They produce series of products ranging form Omo detergent soap, close-up, Lux soap, venus pomade, canoe soap, sunlight soap etc
Also, the increasing population indicate by market surveys and close and use of the company’s products gave rise to a decision to extend the range of products to include a detergent premises at Illupeju in 1975. The company has factories and depot in some major cities in Nigeria and West Africa.

1.3 STATEMENT OF THE PROBLEM
There is certain problems faced most manufacturing company which the researcher must highlight some in order to make her research work a complete one.
However, this research work on the relevance of value engineering techniques in a new product development. Using Unilever Nigeria Plc, Aba factory as the case study. Some of the problems are stated as follows:
1. Reluctance to abandon old method and to consider new methods of developing design the company resist to abandon old habits with the development technology. New materials and new technology are now available and are far better than the old ones.
2. Unwillingness of most companys management to listen to an implement creative ideas that could lead to improvement in materials and process.
3. Lack of time to examine fully all the possible alternative materials process
4. Over creation on the part of designers who might specify too high level of quality

1.4 OBJECTIVES OF THE STUDY
The following are the main objective of the research
1. To investigate those factors that is responsible for unnecessary cost in a manufacturing industry.
2. To investigate the benefit that can be derived form the application of value engineering in the production of a product.
3. To investigate the type of materials to be used the product development
4. The need to produce quality goods and services at a minimum cost as to maximize profit.
5. To assess the appropriate product management techniques used to carryout the cost of the product.

1.5 SIGNIFICANCE OF THE STUDY
In view of the huge expenditure on purchase of material used, due to the less attention given to the relevance of value engineering in new product development. It is the significant of this research work to make a variable and significant rectification sp as to determine alternative way of obtaining some quality material or item at a reduced cost. It is also the significant of this study to review the way cost is being reduced with the value engineering techniques in Unilever Nigeria Plc Aba. This study is also undertaken as a partial fulfillment of national board for technical education and the Federal Polytechnic Nekede for the award of Higher National Diploma (HND) in purchasing and supply management. Also it will serve as an empowerment for the acquaintance of skills and knowledge for future research works.

1.6 RESEARCH QUESTION
To achieve the research objective, the following research question are necessary notable among them are;
1. Does value engineering have a good techniques in respect of cost reduction programme.
2. Does value engineering lead to a drastic cost reduction in products
3. Does value engineering play a major role in new product development.
4. Does those in product design have enough time to fully examine possible alternative materials and processes.

1.7 STATEMENT OF HYPOTHESIS
The following hypothesis have been forwarded in order to carryout this research work
Ho: New product development cannot be effective without value engineering techniques
Hi: New product development can be effective without value engineering techniques
Ho: View product development cannot do without value engineering techniques
Hi: View product development can do without value engineering techniques

1.8 SCOPE OF THE STUDY
For proper appreciation of the relevance of value engineering techniques in new product development, this research would have covered all forms involved in product development. This is not possible due to the fact that the researcher is a student and may not have resources required to carryout such a wide research.
To this effect, the researcher decided to concentrate on the relevance of value engineering techniques in new product development. Unilever Nigeria Plc, Aba. With the believe that whatever the situation is in Unilever Nigeria Plc will be used to generalized the situation all the firms that engage in new product development with the purchasing unit; production unit, design unit, and quality control unit.

1.9 LIMITATION OF THE STUDY
In the cause of carrying out this research work, the researcher noticed some limiting factors which constraints and elaborate work on the activities of Unilever Nigeria Plc, Aba, with respect to new product development.
Some of the restricting factors are;
FINANCE: This is yet a limiting factor to this research because the researcher as a student who is dependent is not financially strong to meet all financial requirements in gather information for this research work.
TIME: It took the researcher time to source for books to which references were made as well as time in visiting the firm under study.
ADEQUATE INFORMATION: Most of the information needed for this research work was not made available to the researcher as the company under study considers them as secretes to the business operation.

1.10 OPERATIONAL DEFINITION OF TERMS
1. Value engineering techniques is a systematic efforts to improve the value of a product, projects or systems and optimize the life cycle costs.
2. The functional cost approach: This approach tries to find out the reasons for spending so much in achieving certain services from the item under revise.
3. Brain storming: This is a process design to stimulation creative thinking, this approach bring together individual with different background to meet the purpose of generating ideas useful in solving a particular problem.
4. The value engineering checklist: The checklist as similar to a questionnaire, it enables the analysis to get information about the item in consideration when the function of the item is property determined.
5. Narrow thinking: This is a contrary to wide measuring little across in comparison with length thinking to work things out and reasons to form ideas in mind.

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