• The Finding PLM to Fit Mid-Sized High-Tech Companies ebook explains how smaller companies in the high technology industry find themselves stuck between full-featured Product Lifecycle Management (PLM) systems that feel out of reach and less capable solutions including cloud-based file sharing or very basic data management applications. They know they can’t afford the errors and inefficiency inherent to informal data and process management, but can’t afford a large time, resource, and financial investment to fix their problems. Unfortunately simple solutions like web file sharing, while very attractive, fall … [ read more ]

    Finding PLM to Fit Mid-Sized High-Tech Companies
  • The How-to Guide to Transitioning from 2D CAD to 3D CAD  shares best practices for moving from 2D to 3D. The guide shares the reasons you should consider going from 2D to 3D, common challenges to avoid, and benefits enjoyed by other companies who gone to 3D. The guide then shares advice to make your switch from 2D to 3D CAD a success. The recommendations were developed by analyzing the responses of Top Performing companies and comparing them to Average Performing companies.This eBook is one in a series of three:Transitioning from 2D CAD to 3D CAD Migrating from 3D CAD to a new 3D CAD Adopting … [ read more ]

    Best Practices for Going from 2D to 3D CAD
  • The Reducing Cost of Quality in CPG report shares perspectives from a survey of over 175 CPG companies to determine how Top Performers manage consumer packaged goods quality. The research finds that these leading companies are able to achieve better quality results with lower internal costs. The report analyzes their processes, organizational structures, and enabling technology to determine how they can get better quality results without placing a financial burden on the business.Please enjoy the summary below, or click the report to download a PDF overview (free of charge, no registration … [ read more ]

    Reducing Cost of Quality for Consumer Packaged Goods (survey report)
  • What type of experiences prepare engineering students the best for "real world" industry work? What should new graduates know when they start their first job?Please share your experience, thoughts, and lessons learned in this new survey on the engineering skills gap. We are exploring questions such as, what types of things do you look for in a new graduate? How can engineering colleges and universities improve their curriculum to better prepare students for today's modern products?  What concerns do you have about the future engineering workforce?Developing the future workforce is critical to the … [ read more ]

    What Skills Do You Wish Engineering Graduates Had? (Survey Invite)
  • This infographic shares the importance of developing a cohesive digital thread when developing formulated products in the consumer packaged goods industry. The digital thread should be driven by customer requirements and incorporate the recipe / formulation, specifications, packaging design, compliance information, claims, cautions, ingredients, labeling, artwork, and more to provide a full view of the product and it's design history. An effective CPG Digital Thread relies on an integrated Product Innovation Platform to connect product data from early in the front end of innovation through development, … [ read more ]

    The CPG Digital Thread (infographic)

Oracle’s Vision for Agile 2014+

Share

Oracle LogoWhat does the future hold for Oracle’s PLM solutions? Oracle has big plans for PLM that include Agile PLM, Agile PLM for Process, and the recently released Oracle Innovation Management solution. Not to mention continued support for the (once considered sunset) Eigner PLM solution.

This post shares a bit of Agile history followed by my insights on their strategic direction as a part of my series on Strategic Visions of the Major PLM Vendors 2014+.

History

In the early PLM days Agile used to roll off of peoples’ tongues along with MatrixOne and the other usual suspects as a leading PLM solution. The Agile team were pioneers in extending PLM beyond the engineering team and outside of the enterprise. They got very high marks as a supply-chain centric PLM solution. They have strong historical strength in high-tech, electronics, and medical device industries, and were a major force in the PLM market in electronics where companies typically outsourced all of their manufacturing to a company like Flextronics. This history is important for two reasons:

  1. It gave Agile a jump start on other vendors for product cost management (PCM, supplier management (SRM), and product compliance
  2. It made Agile a relatively complementary solution to other major PLM vendors that, at the time, were heavily focused on product data management (PDM) and the job of managing CAD

agile software logoAgile was very acquisitive, probably due to a very high market cap.  To compete in more traditional CAD-centric PLM markets, Agile acquired Eigner in 2003. They also acquired Cimmetry Solutions (the product AutoVue is still being sold) in 2005. They acquired Prodika to add process industry capabilities in 2006. Then, Oracle acquired Agile in 2007. As an interesting side note, Oracle planned to sunset the Eigner platform after Acquiring Agile but found out just how loyal the customer base was and changed course to continue support (and still continues to support and enhance the solution today). The Prodika capabilities were strategic to Oracle because of their historic strength in consumer packaged goods (CPG) and other process industries due to their Oracle for Process Manufacturing (OPM) ERP solutions.

Since the acquisition by Oracle, Agile has not been standing still. Although their outbound marketing is not as prevalent because they have had the luxury to sell to the Oracle customer base, the product pipeline has been busy. Most notably is their recently released solution for innovation, Oracle Innovation Management, covering idea management through product portfolio management (PPM). This solution complements their existing project / stage-gate solution, which has strong capabilities.

To complete the story I should mention they Oracle also bought BigMachines to support product configuration and quotation. Oracle also counts the Fusion ProductHub solution for PIM/MDM in their PLM toolkit.

NOTE: Agile logo for historical purposes only

The Oracle PLM Strategy

Where is Agile heading? In a nutshell they are winning big new customers and gearing up to take on the “big three” PLM players. Oracle is in an interesting position because I often see them deployed in parallel with PLM solutions from the major CAD vendors including Siemens PLM’s Teamcenter, PTC’s Windchill, or Dassault Systèmes’ Enovia (or more than one of those in some places). A number of large manufacturers tell me they plan to consolidate on one PLM solution. Agile wants to be that solution. They are also happy to coexist. As an Oracle leader explained to me recently, they tell customers “We have CAD data management and so do they (the competitors). If you like yours, keep it, but if not, we can do that for you too.” Agile is playing it smart, recognizing that sometimes they can solve  some very strategic PLM problems without owning the core CAD/PDM piece. At the same time, they have beefed up their support for managing CAD in order to be able to compete with the other big PLM players.

In terms of coexistence, Oracle can also sell Agile into SAP accounts. Many large manufacturers, particularly in CPG, have standardized on SAP for ERP. Agile is still a strong candidate in those accounts.

Oracle a strong product in Agile. They spent time and effort moving Agile to the Oracle technology stack and have developed a very strong roadmap. Here are some things to expect:

  • Continued new feature releases for the discrete (A9) and process industry products. I have seen the roadmaps but I can’t report on them directly, all I can say is that the developers will be busy.
  • Stronger A9 integration with CAD for discrete manufacturers
  • Expansion of Agile’s PLM for Process to industries outside of food & beverage (chemicals, coatings, nutraceuticals, etc.)
  • An emphasis on the new Oracle Innovation Management solution
  • Continued support and technical compatibility enhancements to support customers on Eigner (ake e6)
  • Mobile applications (some are already available through partners)
  • Cloud offerings

Related Posts

See other posts in our on PLM Strategies of the Major PLM Vendors 2015+ series:

Dassault Systèmes PLM Vision 2015+

Synergis Software PLM Vision 2015+

See more in our Strategic Visions of the Major PLM Vendors 2014+ series including:

Aras PLM Vision 2014+

Arena Solutions Vision 2014+

Autodesk PLM Vision 2014+

Dassault Systèmes PLM Vision 2014+

Infor PLM Vision 2014+

PTC PLM Vision 2014+

Also, don’t miss our The Strategic Visions of CAD/CAE Vendors 2014+

Trackbacks

Speak Your Mind

*