How many people in the world can speak PLMish?

How many people in the world can speak PLMish?

There are roughly 6,500 spoken languages in the world today. However, about 2,000 of those languages have fewer than 1,000 speakers. Guardian article Endangered languages: the full list is opening by shocking phrase that “the last two fluent speakers of the language Ayapaneco aren’t speaking to each other”. The article also brings the full list of languages that vulnerable or endangered. I took a top slice with the number of speakers between 3M to 7.5M.

My attention was caught by Jos Voskuil article who brings up a conversation about what name, buzzword, three letter acronym might replace PLM. I touched the same topic earlier this month – Killing PLM acronym..

My favorite passage from Jos’ article was related to the number PLM consultants Jos found on LinkedIn – 7,500. This is the number of people that actively speak PLMish and understand PLM terminology. If I can compare it to UNESCO list, PLMish would be long way down to endangered languages.

According to LinkedIn, there are over a 7500 PLM consultants in my network.  It is quite an elite group of people as I have over 100.000 CEOs in my network according to LinkedIn. Being a CEO is a commodity. PLM consultants share a common definition, the words Product Lifecycle Management. However, what we all mean by PLM is one of the topics that has evolved over the past 19 years in a significant way.

There is no optimism in Jos’ articles, since he cannot identify a new name for PLM… However, I captured a new candidate in his conclusion – Product Innovation Diamond.

Creating and maintaining unique products and experiences for their customers is the primary target of almost every company. However, no easy acronym that frames these aspects to value at the board level. Perhaps PID – the Product Innovation Diamond approach will be noticed? Your say ….

The article and conclusion made me to feel even stronger that PLM industry should take a look back into roots and look for terminology that is actually understood and spoken by engineers and manufacturing company.

Last week, I started my video blog – Musing about Bill of Materials as part of future Beyond PLM development. I have a passion for Bill of Materials for many years, but besides that I truly believe simple terms like Bill of Materials can help to engineering and manufacturing software to escape from complexity of PLM, MBE(2), QMS, PID, PCD, CPD, AID and others.

What is my conclusion? PLM industry has identification crisis. To get out of this crisis mode, we should stop finding another modern acronyms to replace PLM. We should get back to simple and well understood terms that can be spoken by majority of people in manufacturing companies, This is a beginning of adoption – to be understood by customers. To use elite acronyms that needs to be decoded and later explained won’t do to industry and customers any good. Just my thoughts…

Best, Oleg

Disclaimer: I’m co-founder and CEO of OpenBOM developing cloud based bill of materials and inventory management tool for manufacturing companies, hardware startups and supply chain. My opinion can be unintentionally biased

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  • Amber

    PLM software vendors are pushing their product beyond the manufacturing market which means other industries struggle with the standard terminology and must translate terms to make them relevant to their end users. It’s a challenge. We have renamed PLM to Project Lifecycle Managmement.