Background and Challenge

L.E.K.'s Client, a major international manufacturing company originally founded in Japan, wanted to expand their current R&D team to a global scale to achieve their long-term vision of being a truly global company capable of discovering and developing new products across multiple geographies. Executing on this vision presented our Client with several challenges in terms from expanding its R&D team to work more effectively across multiple markets outside of Japan to coordinating decision-making across many stakeholders in different geographies under tight timelines. The Client asked us to help with this initiative by designing an optimal R&D organization that would be prepare the Client for further globalization of its R&D function.

Approach and Recommendations

Through close collaboration with our client’s team to identify required R&D capabilities for the enhanced organization. We conducted a detailed review of internal data as well as interviews with key management to diagnose issues within the current R&D organization and to identify the gaps. We also conducted an extensive review of our Client’s competitors to identify best practices and develop hypotheses as to what the optimal end-state for R&D organization should look like. We then synthesized its findings to propose a new organizational design that would work effectively with other functions and enhance our Client’s overall long term competitiveness.


This engagement successfully supported the client in designing a global R&D organization to prepare the Client for continual innovation and growth. The project ensured the new organization could better respond to changes in the global marketplace, helped improve the quality and speed of global decision-making, and ensured roles and responsibilities were clearly coordinated across various markets.

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