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Jul 09 - Sep 03, 2024
Registration Deadline
Course Length
8 Weeks
Course Fee
6.4 CEUs
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In today’s highly competitive and volatile market, rapid innovation and mass customization offer a new form of competitive advantage—pushing organizations to implement strategies for designing and developing an entire family of products. In our eight-week Designing Product Families: From Strategy to Implementation course, you will explore how product architecture, platforms, and commonality can help you successfully deploy and manage a family of products.

Course Overview

Over the past 15 years, MIT has offered the in-person Designing Product Families: From Strategy to Implementation program to more than 130 renowned organizations from around the globe, including Philips, P&G, Rolls Royce, Oracle, GE, and ABB. Due to its popularity and success, for the first time, MIT Professional Education will offer the program in a 100% online format. The program has been tailored to suit the needs of working professionals in this technical area of expertise.

Today’s highly competitive and volatile market is reshaping the way organizations do business. Rapid innovation and mass customization offer a new form of competitive advantage. In response, organizations are required to implement strategies to design and develop an entire family of products. This is further based on a common product platform to satisfy a wide variety of customer requirements and leverage economies of scale.

Designing products and product families so that they may be customized for the global marketplace and achieving these goals in an abbreviated time period while maintaining mass production efficiencies, is the key to successful manufacturing operations. Research in this area has matured rapidly over the last decade, and this program looks at how product platform and product family design can be used successfully to increase variety within a product line, shorten manufacturing lead times, and reduce overall costs within a product line.

Designing Product Families: From Strategy to Implementation, with curriculum developed and taught by MIT faculty, is delivered in collaboration with Global Alumni. Contact Global Alumni for more information about this program:

Global Alumni is an ed-tech company that collaborates with institutions to manage enrollments (including all payment services and invoicing), technology, and participant support. 


Learning Outcomes

The Designing Product Families course will equip you with the adequate knowledge to: 

  • Understand the evolution of the industry from craft manufacturing to mass customization
  • Grasp fundamental concepts in product architecting such as architectural decisions, decomposition and function-form mapping during conceptual design
  • Understand the platform concept and be able to prioritize drivers of modularity and product platform design
  • Enumerate metrics for quantifying commonality within a product family
  • Identify major contemporary methods and tools for product family and platform design
  • Understand how benchmarking can assist platform and product family design
  • Understand organizational issues such as divergence in platforms and management roles in platforms
  • Leverage platforms for identifying new market and product opportunities to generate revenue growth
Who Should Attend

This program is aimed at engineers, research and development managers, platform architects, product managers, marketing managers, and product line strategists, in decision-making positions, as well as platform and systems engineers in industrial and government contexts.

These are individuals who typically need to strategically position their products, services, and systems in a competitive marketplace and define modular and scalable product architectures, utilizing standardization, customization, and platform leveraging strategies to maximize cost savings while increasing the capability to offer a variety of customized systems and products.

A basic background in mechanical and/or electrical engineering, as well as some business and accounting experience, is beneficial but not required.


This class was very interesting to me because it forced me to look at products, not only their value to the organization, but the efficiency of that product from a lot of different angles. You can look at it from all the angles taught in the class, or you can look at it from a grouping of those angles. And for me it was a highly valuable. It's much more than just the product lines that we have today in our organization.
TODD NATE - Head of Private Wireless Sales, Nokia
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