In today’s highly competitive market, businesses must continually develop new products to either keep up with constantly changing technology or to stay ahead of the competition— just to remain in business. While businesses are trying to cut cost, the cost of new product development is increasingly rising at an alarming rate. Since “mistakes” are costly, and can often lead to the demise of a company, the success of a company often relies on their ability to innovate. Moreover, development and improvement of existing products can be a limiting factor in the successful development of novel new products. In this paper, it was essential for me to apply the knowledge gained through this innovation class to my experience in the work place at Cascade Microtech (Cascade)—my employer for the last three years. Since I was given very little information from sources within Cascade, much of the knowledge and detailed understanding for this new product, the Neptune Port (Neptune) was gained by observation. I am the ethnographer. Therefore, with observational interpretations, in conjunction with empirical research and case studies relating to the lead-user methodology, I try to explain one possible innovation source behind the Neptune.
Kennedy, Elizabeth, "Product Innovation Through the Lead-User: Cascade Microtech’s Introduction of a Novel Product" (2005). Engineering and Technology Management Student Projects. 1166.