Do it right the first time! How many times have you heard those words? How many times have you uttered that phrase? You’ve heard it from your parents, from your educators and from your boss at work. You’ve said it to your children, to anyone you’ve been responsible for training, and to your employees.
Why should I do it right the first time? We all know the standard answer: because it will take more time and money to redo it than it would have taken to do it right the first time.
Whether it is Boeing, Airbus or any other manufacturer, it takes about 100,000 man-years to design, test, and build a commercial airliner. Typically that means a team of perhaps 10,000 engineers working for ten years or 20,000 professionals working for five years. This helps us understand why total development costs for a brand-new plane can run as high as ten billion dollars.
In 2010 it became clear to Boeing that they needed to offer their airline customers an aircraft powered by a new type of jet engine which was larger, more powerful, and more fuel efficient. Apparently, they spent a few months trying to decide whether to commit to a multi-year new airplane development program or whether to find a way to fit the new engines onto the wings of the venerable 737.