Edwin Addison

Edwin Addison

Industrial and Systems Engineering

Mobile Phone: 910-398-1200
Skype: edaddison214

EGR 507 Product Life Cycle Management

3 Credit Hours

This course covers the management of complex technical products during all phases of the product life cycle. It is a broad survey of all the tools needed by the technical product manager throughout the life cycle of a complex product. The course is taught with a systems approach and from the engineering manager’s viewpoint. The product life cycle includes all aspects of managing products from launch through maturity. The course covers understanding customer needs, product design and packaging, market segmentation, pricing, sales and distribution, technical sales support, training, technical services and support, product evolution and upgrades, and management of disruption. A particular emphasis is placed on the needs of complex high technology products and related engineering services. Business topics are covered as necessary to meet the needs of the engineering manager. Students are expected to learn good communication skills.


Graduate standing with an undergraduate technical degree.

This course is complementary to the sister course EGR 506 “Managing new Hi-Tech Product Launches”. The courses may be taken in either order and both may be taken for credit. This course focuses on managing products throughout the product life cycle, and “Managing New Hi-Tech Product Launches” focuses on new product planning, design and initial market launch. Together, the two courses prepare a student for a career role in Product Management, a good transitory step between engineering and more senior management positions.

Course Objectives

Upon completion of this course students will:

  • Understand the principal issues involved in technical product management throughout all phases of the product life cycle.
  • Be able to develop, plan and manage with a product management plan that covers design, development, test, marketing and sales, and customer support.
  • Be skilled at participating in the development of a strategic plan that relates to organizational objectives for a product or product area including its phase out and replacement at the end of the product life cycle.
  • Understand the relationship of supply chain issues and performance as it relates to the product manager’s job.
  • Be aware of product liability issues, product warranties and their management and product recalls and their impact and management.
  • Acquire basic financial management tools needed by product managers.
  • Learn about the role of regulatory agencies and administrative law as it affects the provision of products to the marketplace.
  • Become exposed to several markets through case studies including pharmaceutical, medical device, software, alternative energy products, electronics, telecommunications and entertainment products. Case studies will be sued so that students can learn the similarities and differences impacting product management in different markets.

Course Topics

  • The Product Lifecycle Model
  • Product Planning
  • Understanding Customer Needs
  • Product Teams
  • Managing Product Design and Development
  • System Integration
  • Outsourcing and Managing Suppliers
  • Supply Chain Analysis
  • Product Field Testing
  • Regulatory Environment
  • Companion Services and Training
  • Sales, Distribution and Presales Support
  • Market Segmentation, Positioning and Pricing
  • Sales, Distribution and pre-sales Support
  • Providing Customer Service and CRM
  • Product Safety, Recalls and Warranties
  • Managing Product Upgrades
  • Managing and Responding to Disruption
  • Life Cycle Cost, P&L Management and ROI

Course Requirements

The course requires extensive reading and case studies.  Students will be required to complete discussions of all of the case studies  In addition, students will complete a product management plan as a course project.  There will be three online quizzes based on the readings.  The course grade will be determined from the following formula:

Participation 30% Based on Two Participation Reports
Quizzes 30% Three Multiple Choice Quizzes on Readings
Project Proposal  10% Presents Business Case for Proposed Product
Project    30% Product Masterplan


Quizzes are machine graded on percentage correct.  Participation is based on the quality of original posts (60%) and the total quantity of substantive posts (40%).   The final project grading policy is stated in the course project handout.


The following textbook is required reading in the course as assigned by the course syllabus.  Each week, specific details about the relative importance of the various topics will be posted through course announcements.

The Product Manager’s Desk Reference, 3rd Edition, by Steven Haines, McGraw Hill

Computer and Software Requirements

Please review minimum computer specifications recommended by NC State University and Engineering Online.

Updated 10/31/2022