When it comes to very highly complex, commercially funded product-development projects it is not sufficient to apply standard project management techniques to manage and keep them under control. Instead, they need a project management approach which is perfectly adapted to their complex nature. This, however, may generate additional cost and a dilemma arises because in commercially-driven product developments there is the natural tendency to limit the management-related costs. The development of a new commercial aircraft is no exception. In fact, it can be regarded as an extreme example of this kind of project. This is why it is especially useful to analyse the project management capabilities and practices needed to manage them. Cost reductions can still be achieved by concentrating on the essential elements of some project management disciplines, to maintain their principal strengths, and combining them in a pragmatic way on the basis of an integrated architecture. This book goes beyond descriptions of management disciplines found elsewhere in its treatment of the architecture integration necessary to interlink product, process and resources data. Only with this connectedness can the interoperation of the management essentials yield maximum efficiency and effectiveness. Commercial Aircraft Projects: Managing the Development of Highly Complex Products proposes an integrated architecture and details, step-by-step, how it can be used for the management of commercial aircraft development projects. The findings can also be applied to other industrial sectors that produce complex hardware based on design inputs.
Dr Hans-Henrich Altfeld, FRAeS, is VP of the Airbus Center of Competence Project & Programme Management in Toulouse, France. His objective within this role is to improve project and programme management culture across Airbus, developing and delivering lean, efficient and pragmatic processes, methods and tools. Dr Altfeld's previous roles within Airbus included setting up and leading the Project Management Office for the development of the Airbus A380 wing, which achieved on-time delivery, and VP at the Airbus Hamburg plant. He received his PhD in 1989 and has since held positions with several aerospace industry organisations, among them Messerschmitt-BÃ¶lkow-Blohm, the European Aerospace Industries Association and Dornier Satellite Systems. In 1999 he joined Airbus as Director for A380 Strategic Issues and Organisation Development where he was in charge of developing the 'design-build team'-based organisation for the 5,000 employees involved in the development of the Airbus A380. Dr Altfeld is a member of the German Engineers Society, former Chairman and now Honorary President of the Royal Aeronautical Society Hamburg Branch and during the term 2007/2008 was also a member of the RAeS President's Council.
' A useful book for students of aerospace engineering management and practitioners in the field who wish to improve their understanding of the main activities of, and challenges for, prime contractors ... Each part is an easy-to read comprehensive explanation of what currently happens in aircraft development, with figures and footnotes to clarify. Examples are used with good effect to illustrate points. There is good use of referencing to support statements made... Reading the book, it is easy to understand the complexity of managing aircraft projects and why there are so many opportunities for the failure that has been the project track record for most modern aircraft programmes.' Aerospace Professional, August 2011