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Value Analysis/Value Engineering
Creative tools > Value Analysis/Value Engineering
Use Value Analysis to analyze and understand the detail of specific situations.
Use it to find a focus on key areas for innovation.
Use it in reverse (called Value Engineering) to identify specific solutions to detail problems.
It is particularly suited to physical and mechanical problems, but can also be used in other areas.
Identify and prioritize functions
Identify the item to be analysed and the customers for whom it is produced.
List the basic functions (the things for which the customer is paying). Note that there are usually very few basic functions.
Identify the secondary functions by asking ‘How is this achieved?’ or ‘What other functions support the basic functions?’.
Determine the relative importance of each function, preferably by asking a representative sample of customers (who will always surprise you with what they prefer).
Analyze contributing functions
Find the components of the item being analyzed that are used to provide the key functions. Again, the question ‘How’ can come in very useful here.
Measure the cost of each component as accurately as possible, including all material and production costs.
Eliminate or reduce the cost of components that add little value, especially high-cost components.
Enhance the value added by components that contribute significantly to functions that are particularly important to customers.
In analyzing a pen, the following table is used to connect components with the functions to which they contribute and hence identify areas of focus.
Value Analysis (and its design partner, Value Engineering) is used to increase the value of products or services to all concerned by considering the function of individual items and the benefit of this function and balancing this against the costs incurred in delivering it. The task then becomes to increase the value or decrease the cost.