Product reliability is of great interest to both manufacturers and buyers. From the manufacture's perspective, low product reliability has a detrimental impact on overall business performance. This impact can be minimized by properly managing reliability over the life cycle of the product. In Chapters 12–17, many models that dealt with reliability-related decisions during design, manufacture, and postsale service were developed and their impacts on various goals or objectives (operational and/or economic) were assessed. Lack of reliability in consumer durables affects buyer satisfaction. In the case of industrial and commercial products, it affects business performance of the buyer. Maintenance and service contracts help to reduce these negative impacts.
Decisions by both manufacturers of consumer durables and industrial and commercial products and buyers of industrial and commercial products must be made in a framework that integrates technical and commercial issues with the aim of optimizing a desired goal or objective. Some illustrative examples of such objectives, from the manufacturer's perspective, are as follows: