It’s exciting when you see a company reinvent themselves to take on an important, unsolved problem in the industry. That’s exactly what Actify has done. We’ve been following them from the time of their early, very successful CAD viewer product line SpinFire through their new evolution to create a holistic solution for automotive project management. What they’ve done opens up a new era of solutions for program managers working for automotive suppliers, and likely for other industries to follow.
I can hear people saying “there are already lots of project management tools on the market.” True. There are also lots of PLM solutions to manage data, cloud storage solutions to manage files, and collaboration solutions to manage…well…collaboration. But automotive program management needs all of those things, and all but the biggest companies have trouble implementing and integrating all of those capabilities. What Actify has done is build a solution that is tailor-made for program managers. It not only manages documents and collaboration – it manages these in the context of an automotive program. During the demonstration, we noted how the tasks maintain the context of the program, for example a DFMEA, so managing the schedule and the work to be done are joined in one place to avoid the need for program managers to manually connect status, schedules, and work objects.
Top tier automotive suppliers live and die by their OEM relationships and the profitability of their programs. To support this, program management has evolved as a unique and critical discipline. Actify has even coined a new phrase, “Make to Program,” that reflects the unique manufacturing style and processes they support in the automotive supply chain. It’s nice to see someone developing tools that are built to work specifically for them. Especially at a time with so many new programs and the dramatic change as the automotive industry electrifies.
Thank you Peter West, Bob Anson, and Charisse Dalton for spending time and sharing the progress toward your vision with me, Julie, and Michelle.