Time to Market – Definition

Cite this article as:"Time to Market – Definition," in The Business Professor, updated May 6, 2019, last accessed October 1, 2020, https://thebusinessprofessor.com/lesson/time-to-market-definition/.


Time to Market (TTM) Definition

TTM means Time to Market, this is the period of time required to realize a product, this is the time from the conception of a product to its final production. TTM varies across diverse markets, products and industries because different products take different space of time to be realized.

Time is critical to every company or market, this is why industries ensure that ideas are translated into finished products without wasting much time. TTM typically measures the length of time required for the creation of ideas and development processes that will birth finished products.

A Little More on What is Time to Market

Since Time to Market vary from industry to industry, so also is the measurement. Generally, there are no rigid standards for measuring TTM. This is due to the fact that industries mark the starting time of a product differently. While some mark the point of conceiving an idea as the starting time, other industries mark starting time as when the idea presented has received approval. Also, the measurement of TTM is largely dependent on how complex a product is and the type of techniques that must be adapted in the project.

The same way the start of a project is marked different across industries, so also the end of the project. In engineering for instance, the end of a project is when it is transferred to the manufacturing department. For some industries, the end is when the product becomes visible for customers to purchase, when other mark the end of a project when a customer purchases it.

Quite a number of people view TTM and quality as opposite sides of a coin, they tend to see an improved TTM as a compromised quality. Many companies want to produce products within a shorter space of time and many achieve this by skipping one of the steps in the process of manufacturing. When a step is skipped due to pressure or high demand, the quality is reduced. However, a company that strives for quality must sacrifice lengthened time to achieve the desired quality. Since coa lot of organizations have the urge to complete projects in little time, not all the steps necessary for the completion of a project are recognized.

Types of Time To Market

The primary goal of every company is to provide quality products for their customers and also do this in the shortest time possible. Due to the varying reasons why organizations go after TTM, the major types of TTM are;

  • Speedy TTM- This is about pure speed, though it is not the best objective, many organizations use it. The company’s goal is to deliver the product as quickly as possible.
  • Predictable schedules TTM- in this case, the products are schedules to meet customer’s needs at specific time, so they are produced and delivered based on schedule.
  • Flexible TTM- here, time to market changes because the goal is customer’s satisfaction. So, production time is flexible to suit the needs of the customers.
  • Minimised TTM- managers that want to minimise cost or labor use this type of TTM. This type of TTM cuts expenses and labor.

References for Time to Market

Academic Research on TTM (Time to market)

New product development: The performance and timetomarket tradeoff, Cohen, M. A., Eliasberg, J., & Ho, T. H. (1996). Management Science, 42(2), 173-186.

New product development structures and timetomarket, Datar, S., Jordan, C., Kekre, S., Rajiv, S., & Srinivasan, K. (1997). Management Science, 43(4), 452-464.

Performance and time to market: Accelerating cycle time with overlapping stages, Calantone, R. J., & Di Benedetto, C. A. (2000). IEEE Transactions on Engineering Management, 47(2), 232-244.

Time to market, Pawar, K. S., Menon, U., & Riedel, J. C. (1994). Integrated manufacturing systems, 5(1), 14-22.

Investing in product development and production capabilities: The crucial linkage between timetomarket and ramp-up time, Carrillo, J. E., & Franza, R. M. (2006). European Journal of Operational Research, 171(2), 536-556.

Timetomarket: Put speed in product development, Vesey, J. T. (1992). Industrial Marketing Management, 21(2), 151-158.

Time to market prediction using type-2 fuzzy sets, Baguley, P., Page, T., Koliza, V., & Maropoulos, P. (2006). Journal of Manufacturing Technology Management, 17(4), 513-520.

Design for manufacturability and timetomarket, Part 1: theoretical foundations, Youssef, M. A. (1994). International Journal of Operations & Production Management, 14(12), 6-21.

The influence of timetomarket and target costing in the new product development success, Afonso, P., Nunes, M., Paisana, A., & Braga, A. (2008). International Journal of Production Economics, 115(2), 559-568.

Quality and timetomarket trade-offs when there are multiple product generations, Morgan, L. O., Morgan, R. M., & Moore, W. L. (2001). Manufacturing & Service Operations Management, 3(2), 89-104.

New product development process and timetomarket in the generic pharmaceutical industry, Prašnikar, J., & Škerlj, T. (2006). Industrial Marketing Management, 35(6), 690-702.

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