Top Manufacturers Achieve Revenue Growth Amid the Economic Downturn

BOSTON, MA -- (MARKET WIRE) -- Mar 10, 2009 -- Given today's current economic conditions, many manufacturers are just trying to find a way to survive. Yet some have managed not only to survive, but to profit amid the chaos. What is their secret? With money tight and spending down, many engineering organizations are getting back to the basics -- productivity, efficiency and effective cost control. Here, proven practices across the core areas of product data management, release to manufacturing and engineering change management can go a long way towards helping companies realize significant productivity improvements and drive profitability. The recent report by Aberdeen Group, a Harte-Hanks Company (NYSE: HHS), " The Top Five Principles for Successful Product Development" explores how industry leaders are applying tools and methodologies in these key areas. To obtain a complimentary copy of the report, visit: http://www.aberdeen.com/summary/report/benchmark/5672-RA-product-development-information.asp.

Most often, what makes the difference is not strategy, but execution. For example, the ability to readily comprehend the impact of an engineering change on the cost of a product can prove especially valuable. "Top performers are leveraging effective engineering change management tools and practices to gain greater visibility into the impact of product development decisions on cost and profitability," observes Amy Rowell, Research Analyst, Product Innovation & Engineering, Aberdeen. The benefits of being able to do so are significant. For Best-in-Class companies, in particular, nearly 83 percent of the products that they develop meet or under-spend product cost targets, and 82 percent meet or exceed revenue targets. "Most notably, these top performers showed an increase in revenue of 4 percent or more in the past year, where their peers experienced either no growth, or suffered from a decline in revenue of 5 percent or more," observes Rowell.

The question is -- how do they do it? Aberdeen's "The Top Five Principles for Successful Product Development" report makes the following recommendations to companies seeking to achieve Best-in-Class status:

--  Provide centralized access to product design data and information and
    facilitate controlled digital access to this data
--  Support cross-departmental collaboration and communication to not only
    avoid costly errors and rework, but to improve product quality, and
    ultimately accelerate time to market
--  Improve change management processes in order to better understand the
    impact of engineering changes on other aspects of product development, and
    to be able to react more quickly to product issues, whether driven by the
    market or by engineering and design
    

A complimentary copy of this report is made available thanks in part to the support of the following underwriters: PTC and Siemens PLM. To obtain a complimentary copy of the report, visit: http://www.aberdeen.com/summary/report/benchmark/5672-RA-product-development-information.asp.

For additional access to complimentary Product Innovation and Engineering Research, please visit http://research.aberdeen.com/index.php/-product-innovation.

About Aberdeen Group, a Harte-Hanks Company

Aberdeen is a leading provider of fact-based research and market intelligence that delivers demonstrable results. Having benchmarked more than 30,000 companies in the past two years, Aberdeen is uniquely positioned to educate users to action: driving market awareness, creating demand, enabling sales, and delivering meaningful return-on-investment analysis. As the trusted advisor to the global technology markets, corporations turn to Aberdeen™ for insights that drive decisions.

As a Harte-Hanks Company, Aberdeen plays a key role of putting content in context for the global direct and targeted marketing company. Aberdeen's analytical and independent view of the "customer optimization" process of Harte-Hanks (Information - Opportunity - Insight - Engagement - Interaction) extends the client value and accentuates the strategic role Harte-Hanks brings to the market. For additional information, visit Aberdeen http://www.aberdeen.com or call (617) 723-7890, or to learn more about Harte-Hanks, call (800) 456-9748 or go to http://www.harte-hanks.com.

© 2009 Aberdeen Group, Inc., a Harte-Hanks Company
451 D Street, Suite 710
Boston, Massachusetts 02210-1928
Telephone: (617) 854-5200
Fax: (617) 723-7897

www.aberdeen.com

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Media Contact:
Amy Rowell
Aberdeen Harte-Hanks
(617) 854-5398

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