The New Efficiency of PLM

The new efficiency is where cost saving, productivity and innovation meet. I was reading “The New Efficiency” letter from Steve Balmer. Microsoft sees themselves changing toward a new economical situation. Also, take a look on Microsoft New Efficiency web site with some interesting examples.

The “new normal”, becomes something very important, and I tried to think about – what are the potential implications on Product Lifecycle Management? So, where I do see challenges for PLM in the context of “new normal”.

1. Technological Revolution. From the early beginning, CAD, CAM, CAE, PDM, PLM was very technologically oriented areas. I think, all we did in the past was founded by new technologies and new ideas. In the past, technological revolution came from big companies and founded by big research programs. I think, we are in front of new wave of technological revolution. However, this technological wave will be funded by wisdom of the crowd. This new technological revolution will come to PLM from consumer market and tools.

2. Lean implementation
processes. I think, the way we are implementing Product Lifecycle Management is very structural. With the significant focus on corporate processes, PLM becomes very top-down in the organization. Unfortunately, I think, this way in many cases becomes not very efficient for an organization and brings additional cost to PLM. I believe, we need to bring new ideas about how introduce PLM processes differently.

3. Support for innovation in product development. How we can make  innovation in product development? How we can sponsor product development innovation? In many cases PDM and PLM considered as something “about data, revisions, approvals”. In short – boring… I think this is a very important place to change. PLM needs to support innovation by technologies we provide.

So, how do you think our industry need to deal with new efficiency and challenges “new normal” put in front of us? Let me know what do you think? How “new normal” is impacting your PLM-related plans and operations? What do you see as the biggest challenges?

Best, Oleg


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  • AndyF

    My team has been working in this space for many years and just recently we’ve become convinced that none of the PLM tools are worth investing in anymore. The big PLM vendors have all become entrapped by their millions of lines of code and they can no longer provide what we want.

    We do believe that commercial PDM solutions are the way to go and we don’t see any issue with ERP applications or the big financial packages. But the PLM vendors have tried to take over everything and in the process they all became bloatware.

    We’ve moved on to building our own PLM framework using Microsoft based tools. These modern tools have the ability to push and pull data from the various legacy systems such as PDM, ERP, Sales systems, etc. That is all that is required for our environment, there is no need to deploy a bloated PLM system that sucks up $M’s in consulting fees and license costs each year.

    The climate has changed, the dinosaurs are dying even if they don’t know it yet.

  • Andy, thanks for your insight! Actually by saying “new efficiency of PLM”, I thought about dinosaurs. You can put IBM, Microsoft in the list btw if you will compare it to Google for example. However, I’ll try to play “devil advocate” role by saying that ERP packages are actually considered as very costly and heavy in implementations. Where you see the difference between ERP and Enterprise PLM? Btw- on both sides there are packages that small, configurable and lean…. Do is make sense? Best, Oleg