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    How can an MRS (Market Requirement Statement) work for a product that is already in development and near completion?

  1. I've had MRS' written even after the product is designed and in BETA site. One of the things it really does is solidify the configuration. It helps update engineering and product planning as to what features and configurations, hardware and software, will be required. Obviously, it gets everyone singing off the same sheet of music which is the most important purpose of an MRS. You can also help correct any misunderstandings you picked up from the customer to help with your marketing campaign. In other words, it has very high value after the product development is well under way.
  2. It can also help you figure out whether or not you are in trouble. When I was at Applied in its early days the technology people had taken on the development of a new product on their own. The machine was expensive and, but the problem was it didn't work well at all. It made particles; it was unreliable; it didn't give the benefit that the component it was replacing did. Maybe a third of the company's revenues from the previous two years had been sunk into developing this product. Marketing said we're not quoting it or taking orders for it, if you (technology) want to go into the market and take orders go for it. We got away with the tactic and the product was stopped. If it hadn't been stopped Applied Materials would have been sunk. Even a post-MRS is a way of making sure you really want to go forward.
  3. When you get in a situation such as was just described, you may want to present your data as "new" information. The purpose, at the end of the day, is to get the problem corrected and there are people that will get overly defensive if you question what they have already done. You become the bearer of new input that the offending parties didn't have previously which gets them off the hook.