• 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)

Can PDM Value be Achieved Quickly? Painlessly?

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A quick peek into some research on … the business value of PDM and how companies can implement PDM solutions in a way that helps them achieve value quickly and set themselves up for more value over the long term. The report, The Business Value of Product Data Management: Achieving Rapid and Extendable Benefits, shares the experiences of three small to midsize (SMB) manufacturers and discusses how they were able to take a more “out of the box” approach to PDM to implement it quickly, achieve the value they were looking for, and ensure they could continue to add on and upgrade the solution over time.

Note: See updated version of this report here.

The Research Findings

The report is based on interviews with several SMB manufacturers in different industries, including:

  • Veeraja Industries– A total solutions provider of coolant filtration, chip removal and coolant management
  • Flovel Energy – A fully integrated hydro power equipment supplier
  • Weir Valves & Controls – an end-to-end whole plant solutions to nuclear, fossil-fired and renewable power stations

The findings are similar to other research I have done into product data management solutions, including Managing Engineering Data – The Role of Product Data Management in Improving Engineering Efficiency. Manufacturers are using PDM to get control of their product-related data and better share it across their business. In specific, the report identifies several repeated themes that companies report as valuable results of implementing PDM:

  • Control and secure product-related data
  • Improve the ability to quickly find and reuse information
  • Share product knowledge with other departments

This report examines how companies can achieve these benefits rapidly. The companies surveyed took more “out of the box” approaches to implementing PDM. This helped with faster time to benefit from PDM, but also set them up to leverage more of the solution in the future (and take future upgrades without having to reconcile modifications with the new release). Specifically, they used a solution that allowed them to:

  • Take advantage of PDM systems with pre-configured, best practices for security, part numbering schemes, and other common information required to set up a the system
  • Leverage standard best practice workflows such as “release to manufacture” and “engineering change control” to speed implementation
  • Limit customization of PDM in order to achieve rapid time to benefit and simplify future maintenance and upgrades

Implications for Manufacturers

The research provides a way to view how PDM helps improve business performance. I am still surprised to find companies that haven’t implemented PDM, while others are on their second or third generation or have extended the value to a full PLM solution. The barriers to implementing PDM have come down dramatically in recent years, and there are now more pre-configured solutions on the market that can help companies implement without reinventing the wheel. Even for smaller companies, there is a PDM solution that is right for them and can help control the complexity of today’s engineering environment.

So that was a quick peek into some recent research on PDM and how to implement it quickly, I hope you found it interesting. Does the research reflect your experiences? Do you see it differently? Let us know what it looks like from your perspective.

Please feel free to review more free research and white papers about PLM and other enterprise software for manufacturers from Tech-Clarity.

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  1. […] new. The following post by Jim Brown was a trigger for me to get back and discuss it. Jim posted: Can PDM Value Being Achieved Quickly? Painlessly? You can go to Jim’s blog and read about the research he did. In addition, you can navigate to […]

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