• Top 5 Ways to Measure Product Innovation, Choosing Metrics to Drive Innovation Performance shares the importance of measuring innovation to improve innovation capability and outcomes. Please enjoy the summary below, or click the report to download a PDF overview (free of charge, no registration required). For the full report, please visit our sponsor, Planview (free of charge, registration required). Why Measure Innovation? Companies know they’ll be rewarded for innovation. They’ve seen that product developers who set the agenda in their market and force their competitors to react have a distinct … [ read more ]

    Top 5 Ways to Measure Product Innovation (white paper)
  • This episode of Tech-Clarity TV explains how food and beverage companies can survive in the digital age as new, agile, innovative companies disrupt their markets.  It shares how these food and CPG companies can use analytics as a competitive tool to better sense and respond to customer needs and gain deeper understanding of their products, processes, and production. This video is part of a series of videos showing how digitalization can help food and beverage companies compete with innovative, digital industry competitors that are disrupting the status quo. The video series is sponsored by Siemens, a … [ read more ]

    The Analytics Opportunity for Food and Beverage in the Digital Age (video)
  • Tech-Clarity’s BOM Management Buyer’s Guide - Boost Performance with Digital BOMs provides criteria for manufacturers to evaluate software solutions to support their Bill of Material and product structure data and processes. Tech-Clarity’s Buyer’s Guides go beyond software functionality to provide a framework of requirements that impact implementation success and long-term ROI, including: Software requirements Implementation Integration User adoption Support Vendor characteristics / attributes Industry or unique business needs Please enjoy the summary below, or click the report to … [ read more ]

    BOM Management Buyer’s Guide
  • This episode of Tech-Clarity TV explains how digital food and beverage companies improve agility, innovation, and productivity through better connectivity between R&D and the plant, streamlined production operations, and analytics. This video is part of a series of videos showing how digitalization can help food and beverage companies compete with innovative, digital industry competitors that are disrupting the status quo. The video series is sponsored by Siemens, a leader in digitalization for the food and beverage industry. For more information, see Tech-Clarity's series of guest posts on how … [ read more ]

    Producing Food and Beverages in the Digital Age (video)
  • How do chemical companies apply digital to the chem lab? Digitalization is streamlining the way companies innovate and bring products to market. Tech-Clarity's Jim Brown will share findings from his research on how chemical companies leverage the digital enterprise to improve efficiency and reduce cost while dealing with mounting regulatory and sustainability pressure. Register for the December 13 webcast (free of charge, registration required). Sponsored by Dassault Systemes BIOVIA. … [ read more ]

    Digitalizing the Chemical Lab (webcast)

Developing Sofware-Intensive Products

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Perspective: Developing Software-Intensive Products: Addressing the Innovation-Complexity Conundrum presents survey data and analysis to help manufacturers understand the benefits and challenges of developing products that derive a significant amount of their capabilities from software. The terms “embedded software” and “mechatronics” really don’t describe the varied uses of software in today’s products from automobiles to appliances. This report describes how companies can take advantage of the benefits available from software-intensive products while using using organization structure, business processes, and structured systems like ALM and PLM to address the significant challenges and business impacts resulting from added development complexity.

Please enjoy the free Executive Summary below, or click the report title above to download a PDF of the report (free of charge, no registration required). The full report is also available from PTC for no charge and with no registration required.

Table of Contents

  • Executive Overview
  • Increased Prevalence and Importance of Product Software
  • Adopt a Software-Intensive Product Strategy
  • Understand Challenges and the Resulting Business Impacts
  • Organize for Success
  • Look at the Big Picture
  • Take an Integrated Approach to Enablement
  • Conclusion
  • Recommendations
  • About the Author
  • About the Research

Executive Overview

Manufacturers today face a strategic conflict as they develop products that derive a significant amount of functionality and innovation from software. On the one hand, software dramatically improves product innovation, increases product capabilities, and provides other important strategic benefits ranging from competitive market advantages to cost savings. These benefits are compelling, as described in Tech-Clarity’s Systems & Software Driven Innovation: Complexity and Opportunity in the Mechatronic Era. On the other hand, product developers face increased complexity that can lead to poor quality, longer product development cycles, and reduced efficiency. Tech-Clarity surveyed over 100 companies to understand how manufacturers can take advantage of the benefits of a software-intensive product strategy without suffering from the inherent complexity.

The study results underscore the importance of addressing this innovation-complexity conundrum. The majority of companies significantly increased the amount of software, the importance of software, and the innovation driven by software in their products over the last five years – and plan to increase these further over the next five years. Why? The simple answer is better products. Survey respondents across industries confirmed this, indicating that strategies to achieve greater product capabilities, smarter products, and increased innovation drive the need to include more software in products.

The survey also uncovered significant challenges and negative business impacts resulting from complexity. For example, over one-half of the companies surveyed indicate they experience product quality issues and delayed time to market when developing software intensive products. How can manufacturers enjoy the benefits of a software-driven product strategy without falling into the quality and time to market traps due to complexity? The survey identified that companies with the following characteristics reported fewer significant, negative impacts when engineering products that include electrical, mechanical, and software components:

  • Unified or integrated teams for electrical, mechanical, software engineering
  • Use of systems modeling
  • Unified or integrated solutions for designing software-intensive products
  • Use of formal data / lifecycle management solutions (ALM and/or PLM)

Tech-Clarity’s conclusion from this report is that a Product Lifecycle Management (PLM) approach is well positioned to enhance collaboration and integrate processes, teams, and technology to relieve manufacturers from the challenges and impacts inherent in developing software-intensive products.

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