How many enterprise PLM systems will survive cloud migration

How many enterprise PLM systems will survive cloud migration


Cloud adoption is growing. For most of existing PLM vendors it means to think about how to migrate existing platforms and applications to the cloud. I covered related activities of PLM vendors in my previous articles. Take a look here – PLM cloud options and 2014 SaaS survey. It can give you an entry point to few more articles. Some of vendors such as Dassault System are promising to deliver a full set of cloud options – private, public and hybrid. Aras is partnering with Microsoft Azure and Siemens PLM is focusing on a diverse set of IaaS options. At the same time to move existing platform to the cloud won’t be simple. To migrate customers’ environments to the cloud will be even more complicated.

My attention caught by InfoWorld article – Docker’s tremendous upside could upset some enterprises. If you are not familiar with what Docker is, navigate to my earlier blog – Why to ask cloud PLM vendor about Devops and Kebernetes. InfoWorld article speaks about Docker’s ability to support application portability and a potential clash between what Docker can provide and the cloud migration strategies developed by enterprises for the last few years. Here is an interesting passage.

With Google, Microsoft, and Amazon Web Services all supporting Docker, your management may feel compelled to take a hard look at it as the right enabling technology. If this means rebooting your existing application migration strategy, perhaps even redoing 50 applications, then so be it. After all, the technology is changing so quickly that enterprises should be allowed to change strategy when new developments arise.

How is that related to what PLM vendors are doing? In my view, it is an additional shakeout to PLM vendors as they go towards more learning about cloud applications, services, and ways to migrate from existing PLM platforms into future “clouds”. It is about “how” to make cloud real and it will require to go down from marketing messages about moving to the cloud into deep waters of DevOps and services. One of my PLM predictions for 2015 was about the fact software vendors will discover the complexity of cloud PLM migrations. You can listen to my 3 predictions for PLM in 2015 by navigating to the following podcast by SPK and Associates.

What is my conclusion? PLM vendors and enterprise customers soon to discover the complexity of migration to the cloud. It will come trough understanding of underlining architectures, complexity of operation, service level commitments and other business and technologies topics. Most of enterprises are heavy invested into customization of existing PLM platforms, which will add an level of complexity for migration. How many enterprise PLM apps will survive cloud migration? This is a good question to ask in coming year. Just my thoughts…

Best, Oleg

photo credit: M J M via photopin cc


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  • Günther Müller

    Hi Oleg, an interesting question. But I expect, it will take years to
    give an answer. Maybe some veterans will disappear but new player will

    As a VAR of Dassault Systemes I have some knowledge what’s happening
    there. The V6 architecture with web and database orientation already
    allows different ways of implementations – including on the cloud. It
    makes no difference where You put Your virtual machines – they can stay
    on site or anywhere in the cloud. So on the techological side DS already
    has a proved solution.

    PLM on the cloud as a service is the challenge – and it is new for all
    PLM vendors. DS already offers the public option, the private and the
    hybrid variants will follow. But the public variant is not appropriate
    for an enterprise PLM implementation as it lacks the ability of customer
    specific configuration. This will be possible with the private option.

    Migrations of existing on site PLM implementations to the cloud will
    allways require a case by case consideration. I expect that a migration
    will typically be split up into two steps. If a DS enterprise customer
    does not have his PLM on V6, he will first migrate his existing solution
    into a V6 architecture on site, eliminating the additional complexity
    of going on the cloud.As soon as
    V6 works fine on site the next step will be to put this proved
    environment into the DS cloud solution. This step by step approach
    reduces the complexity and makes the migration better planable.

    As I do not know the cloud-readyness of other enterprise PLM vendors in detail I cannot comment this.

    So I don’t have any idea how many enterprise PLM vendors will survive,
    but I’m convinced, that Dassault Systemes will be one of them.

    Regards, Günther

  • beyondplm

    Gunter, thanks for sharing your comment and perspective on DS technologies and solutions. I agree with you – the conversion of existing PLM solution into new architecture and technology is complex. It was always a very complex case and it is even more complex with transition into the cloud. The last one is adding multiple angles of complication – data ownership, customization, sharing and collaboration.