The value engineering method focuses on functional values, and aims to increase the difference between the cost and value of a product: by lowering cost and/or adding value. In many cases, the emphasis is simply on reducing costs, and the design effort is concentrated onto the detailed design of components, on their materials, shapes, manufacturing methods and assembly processes. This more limited version of the method is known as value analysis. It is usually applied only to the refinement of an existing product, where the broader value engineering method is also applicable to new designs or to the substantial redesign of a product. Value analysis particularly requires detailed information on component cost.
Because of the variety and detail of information required in value analysis and value engineering, they are usually conducted as team efforts, involving members from different departments of a company, such as design, costing, marketing, production departments, etc.