I want to raise discussion about reporting in PLM. We don’t see it much in marketing materials about PLM. I asked myself why? Maybe in there is no need for reports? Maybe the way to present report is obsolete and people are interested to see information by using normal UI of PLM and other systems? If it is so, why so many customers are in love from their “PLM Excels” with all information presented in cells and rows? My hunch is that we have a problem here… Yesterday I had chance to read blog by Joe Barkai about PLM and Sustainability, which led me to some reporting standards initiatives. So, it was a trigger to investigate it more in deep.
Reports in PDM/PLM systems
In my view, reports in PDM and PLM systems are on the very primitive level. Technologically, they seem as an obvious and during evaluation, customers, are ending up by the conclusion that all is possible, and they can extract, re-format, modify data when they will be a real need to do so. However, in practice, reports are rarely coming to the agenda of implementers (correct me, please, if I’m wrong), since normally, they’re so much other things to do…
The problem, I see that absence of reporting capabilities is not allowing to the customers to get information about a product in a timely manner and in a readable form. When user interfaces are complicated, most of the users that might be interested to see information, actually cannot put their hands on it.
Is there a place for Reporting Standards?
I don’t see any standard activity in this place, for the moment. However, getting back to IDC blog post, as much as we can see growing regulation activities, I’d expect increases in potential to establish reporting standards. So, requests for reports will come from regulators. In these case , regulations, will play a role of the trigger in establishing of reporting standards.
What is my conclusion? In my view, reporting capabilities are undervalued by PLM systems today. PLM vendors see reports as a commodity with low value. The reporting activities for the best are part of PLM services and/or implementers. However, looking again, I’d expect to grow an interest from customers to have the ability to provide reports based on data we have in PLM systems. What do you think? What was your “reporting” experience with PLM?