AGA: AQVIA

Oxyma Develops AGA’s New Carbonator in Record Time

AGA: AQVIA

In 2008, AGA’s consumer division was issued a challenge: “You have nine months to launch a new carbonator!” they were told. The tight deadline placed heavy demands on both Oxyma and AGA. The ability to cooperate, flexibility, and dedication became critical factors in AQVIA’s success, which continues today.

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Oxyma Develops AGA’s New Carbonator in Record Time

We started the project with a blank drawing board. Should AGA develop a new product, or find an existing product that they could launch? What were the product’s critical features? What type of product were consumers looking for? AGA knew that there was a demand for the product and had good information about the market. But there were choices to be made about how to approach the market and with what type of product. They needed data on which to base their decisions. For this reason, different preliminary studies were carried out initially, including consumer tests, competitive analyses, technology reviews, and financial analyses.

“We conducted a number of studies in parallel, but were careful about what we investigated and careful to keep up a good pace,” explains Kurt Svantesson from AGA’s New Business Development division. The focus was placed on identifying the critical business parameters.

“After completing the studies, we were able to formulate a strategy and set up a framework for the project. We decided to use existing technology, emphasize customer experience, and focus on rapid development,” Svantesson continues. “A development plan was prepared based on the initial studies and defined strategy. The plan was revised on an ongoing basis during the course of the project. There were gaps and areas that we might perhaps have dug deeper into in the beginning, but these were judged not to be business-critical. Instead, we chose to focus on developing the right mindset and knowledge within the project,” says Jonas Alvan, Project Manager at Oxyma. It proved to be a successful strategy.

Time Factor Critical in Every Decision

Plans for accelerating the project were adopted through intensive dialog and creative discussions. It was decided that parallel processes should be used. Production solutions were developed before the product had even been designed. Sales work was initiated before the tests had been approved. Choices were made and risks were taken.

“We were aware of the risks inherent in the project’s format. Still, we chose to prioritize the time aspect. As a result of the intrinsic risk factors, we were forced to minimize other risks,” adds Svantesson.

This decision was most clearly reflected in AGA’s choice of partners and suppliers. One of AGA’s basic attitudes was that good partnerships save both time and money.

“In some cases, we chose a more expensive alternative to minimize uncertainty,” Svantesson continues.

Parallel processes create confusion in a project. Changes affect many different areas. How do you manage that? In Svantesson’s eyes, the interaction between project managers and the client’s organization is the key. The client must be willing, informed, and able to make quick decisions. A common foundation and framework for the project is also very important. Oxyma’s project leader agrees:

“Every member of the project team knew what was important in the project. Also, we never shied away from presenting inconvenient results or from highlighting areas where decisions needed to be made.

The AQVIA concept has gone on to become well established and has been further developed to include a number of different models and a range of flavors.