From the category archives:


How PLM can stop living in the future?

by Oleg on April 30, 2014 · 0 comments


One of my favorite keynotes last week at COFES 2014 took me to the definition of time paradox and how different time orientation can reflect personal happiness. People are usually in one of the three time phases orientation – past, present or future. It appears that such presence phases have influence on lots of aspects of people’s behavior. If you never heard about this (like me until last week), the following video by Philip Zimbardo – The psychology of time is a very good starting point to learn about it. I’m looking forward to read Time Paradox book coming weekend.

COFES keynote time paradox made talks me think that time phase orientation can be applied organizational behavior as well as vendor-customer relationships. The realization that PLM vendor and PLM customer may be seeing the world very differently is important. Evermore, it can lead to understanding of how to improve that behavior and “customer happiness”.

In my view most of PLM vendors as well as technological providers are future phase, which makes a lot of sense. From that standpoint, I can see PLM is standing out, especially when it comes to SME organization. For many of them, technologies are mostly meaningless. To think about process improvement? Meh… What is important is to get job done and deliver orders. Which made me think about customers are in present phase. It come with risk management, cost optimization, interest to protect current job and current business status, etc.

It is very hard (almost impossible) to change people. It will take long time to make customer re-think how to perceive future tech investment. At the same time, vendors need to learn how to become more present oriented and turn PLM solutions that can bring short term practical benefits without significant investment from their side.

What is my conclusion? Customers are demonstrating high level of resilience against technological changes. For most cases, they see it as a disturbance. Vendors need to find a way to show more customer-orientation – it will help to bridge between future and present time orientation and move implementation focus into present time. Just my thoughts…

Best, Oleg



PLM and Big Data Industrial View

by Oleg on December 7, 2012 · 2 comments

Last week, I followed Gilbane Conference Boston online. Navigate here to dig for more info. Gilbane conference focus is content, web and mobile. My primary interest was about content. Let me say differently – growing content in organization and online. This is not a surprising topic these days. You can see many charts these days online presenting a growing content online and in enterprise organizations. Another trending word is “big data”. I’m sure you’ve heard this buzzword before. Nevertheless, here is Wikipedia definition from this article.

In information technology, big data[1][2] is a collection of data sets so large and complex that it becomes difficult to process using on-hand database management tools. The challenges include capture, curation, storage,[3] search, sharing, analysis,[4] and visualization. The trend to larger data sets is due to the additional information derivable from analysis of a single large set of related data, as compared to separate smaller sets with the same total amount of data, allowing correlations to be found to “spot business trends, determine quality of research, prevent diseases, link legal citations, combat crime, and determine real-time roadway traffic conditions.”[5][6][7]

One of Gilbane’s presentations about big data caught my attention - Big Data for Enterprise and Marketing Applications — Three Views. CMS article Big Data Explosion Offers Value provide a good write up of this presentation. What was interesting to me is to see how the value of Big Data presented beyond the point of Twitter data analyzes and other web-oriented application. The following paragraph focuses on Big Data and Industrial view by GE’s GM Brian Courteny:

Brian Courtney, GM of Industrial Data Intelligence for GE, discussed a critical but less-publicized aspect of Big Data — its role in automating the monitoring and analysis of industrial data. He said GE uses both batch processing, the offline analysis of “massive repositories of data for patterns and insights,” and stream processing, the real-time analysis of “web-scale data to identify trends and anomalies as or before they occur,” to determine data patterns that indicate likely failures in GE technology such as electricity-generating turbines and airplane engines and then monitor equipment for those patterns in real time.

Another article GE, Industrial Internet and radical efficiency is providing more examples about how GE is planning to leverage Big Data technology to improve their products. Here is my favorite passage:

Something important is going on here. GE’s new focus is about “the convergence of the global industrial system with the power of advanced computing, analytics, low-cost sensing and new levels of connectivity permitted by the Internet.” It’s about how “the deeper meshing of the digital world with the world of machines holds the potential to bring about profound transformation to global industry, and in turn to many aspects of daily life, including the way many of us do our jobs.”

The examples above make a lot of sense to me in the connection to PLM, product development and manufacturing. Monitoring of products in a real life becomes an interesting and fascinating topic. It can provide significant impact of design improvements and help manufacturers to innovate. Sounds like a primary role for PLM these days – to boost innovation among manufacturing companies. Think about data trend analyzes that can prevent potential failure of systems in a car that can alert customer to approach server center. Dream? I’m not sure and think we will see it soon.

What is my conclusion? Monitoring products in a real life is a interesting topic. However, most of the limitations today are related to inability to analyze a massive amount of data produced during the monitoring. Relational databases used by majority of PLM platforms cannot scale. BigData technologies can change it. It is an interesting application of tech originally developed in a consumer space. Just my thoughts…

Best, Oleg

pic is courtesy GreenBiz article.



PLM, Cupcakes and Blind Spotting

by Oleg on June 18, 2012 · 0 comments

Let me ask you this… Is there a connection between PLM and Cupcakes? I hope I’ve got your attention for a minute :) . One of the questions PLM industry is struggling for a long period of time is awareness. PLM long time industry opponents ERPs are well positioned to get attention of CIOs and other executives in the companies. At the same time, speak to any PLM-related person about PLM awareness, and you will be immediately attacked by a long list of facts that supposed to convince you PLM is the first thing you need to implement in order to improve your business. Getting back to the original question about PLM and Cupcakes, one of my best blogging and twitting buddies, Jim McKenney posted in his PLM on my brain few months ago an interesting blog post called – Who needs Product Lifecycle Management? The following passage is my favorite:

People seemingly cannot agree on who really needs Product Lifecycle Management, or PLM.  What is my response? EVERY business needs PLM! Why, you ask, well, let me tell you. Every business has a large pile of information that supports their products. It may be in the form of paper, but thankfully today, most businesses have a large amount of digital information that supports their business. Managing that virtual information is what allows the company to continue delivering products and support to their customers. PLM is all about managing virtual information to support physical products.

Later in his post, Jim is coming to the “cupcakes story” explaining why every company needs PLM. You can replace “cupcakes” with anything else – cars, airplanes, computers, food, etc. and it won’t change a story. The fact how people convinced themselves about the need of PLM is interesting to observe. As a result of this, PLM solutions’ appetites are growing, and many additional solutions become part of PLM portfolios.

Another thing that very often came in conversations about PLM is “change”. The company must change their processes, behaviors, organization, systems, etc. to successfully implement PLM systems. Another PLM blogger I admire – Jos Voskuil often writes about people’s aspect of PLM. In one of the last posts in his virtualdutchman blog – The State of PLM after 4 years blogging Jos is saying: I believe PLM requires a change in an organization not only from the IT perspective but more important from the way people will work in an organization and the new processes they require.

The aspect of change and the question about PLM awareness made me think about “blind spotting”. Everybody knows what is blind spot when you drive your car. However, this is not exactly what I want to talk about. I’ve got my exposure to the topic of blind spotting two years ago during COFES 2010 when I attended a lecture of Peter Marks about the same topic. I put a video record of this session. It is longer than a usual video I put in my posts. Keep it for coming 4th of July week and watch it. I’m sure you will learn a lot as I did.

Just to capture an idea of what Peter Marks is talking about I want to refer you to the article where Peter is answering 3 questions about blind spotting. Navigate here and have a read. Here is the question that caught my special attention. Peter is talking about what blind spot will make a biggest difference to us:

It’s probably the extension of our innate territoriality to territories of belief. This often leads to irrational escalation of conflict. As with many other animals, we’re wired to defend our territories.  Home territories are where we find sustenance and protect our kin.   Over the millennia, we’ve evolved many biases to give us a “home field advantage.” Today, the notion of defending a physical territory has extended to “territories” of belief and culture.  The functional silos in most medium size and larger organizations are a mild form of this territoriality.

I found it resonating to the topic of PLM territory :) . I hope you’ve got my point. It is about how to organize the territory of automotive manufacturing company, high-tech company and… finally, cupcake company with the way PLM is pretending to make their business. This is where a second blind spot mentioned by Peter caught my special attention -

Q: What is the biggest blind spot you overcome yourself? One thing I’ve become more aware of is how the “confirmation bias”  affects me.  Most of us, myself included, are confident in our own beliefs.   When challenged, we start looking (only) for evidence that supports our opinion.  Early in school and in my career, my knee-jerk reaction was to bury contrary opinions in an avalanche of facts.

What is my conclusion? I found “blind spotting” as an interesting association to look on what is happening around PLM these days. We’ve been very long-time believers of “know how” to make companies to use PLM software. I have to say, we’ve got certain achievements in how we did it. However, PLM software didn’t make it to the mainstream adoption similar to accounting, CRM and some of ERP functions. The market situation these days is very disruptive- cloud, social, different so-called “2.0 trends”. It is important to overcome traditional PLM blind spot in order to see what the shift PLM industry needs to take to go beyond its current potential. Just my thoughts…

Best, Oleg



PLM and IT Consumerization (PLM 2012 in Munich)

February 23, 2012

I had two very busy days in Munich attending PLM Innovation event. There were lots of great conversations, ideas and demos. Earlier today I had a chance to share my ideas of how Consumerization of IT will influence the future of Product Lifecycle Management. Below, I’d like to share slides of my presentation. Plm and IT consumerization […]

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PLM, Expensive Documentation and Cheap Texbooks

January 20, 2012

Apple is going to eduction. Bam… It sounds fantastic. Textbooks are on the iPad. I was screening few publications about this event yesterday. One of them specifically caught my attention – Publisher Terry McGraw on Steve Jobs and Digital Textbooks: “This Was His Vision”. Another one from Mashable – Why the iPad Won’t Transform Education […]

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PLM & Market and Technology Trends

October 14, 2011

Yesterday I spent my day on Dassault PLM Forum in Moscow. The event website is here. You can see the agenda of the forum in English here. I was talking about PLM relations to modern market and technological trend. PLM & Market and Technology Trends View more presentations from Oleg Shilovitsky Best, Oleg

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PLM – Clearer Definition or Problem Solving?

September 2, 2011

I’m adding another post to my collection of PLM definitions. Gavlin Quinlan came with the blog post on concurrent-engineering blog earlier this week. Here is the name – A Clearer Definition of PLM. I spent 10 minutes reading the blog and material. It points out to the CIMData Whitepaper 10 Questions to ask PLM Solution […]

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PLM Implementations and KISSASSing

May 26, 2011

Services is a significant part of every PLM implementation. According to CIMData, about 60% of cPDM revenues is coming from services. This is a huge number. Simplicity is another big issue related to PLM implementations. Keep it simple. Another important one is about to have C-level sponsor in an organization for your PLM project. To keep […]

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Thinking Outside the Box about PLM

May 19, 2011

This is my presentation from today’s discussion on Eurostep 2011 forum. Thinking outside the box about PLM View more presentations from Oleg Shilovitsky For more information about the event follow my twitter on #eurostep2011 from today and tomorrow. Best, Oleg

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What Will Impact PLM in the Next 10 years?

April 29, 2011

BeyondPLM panel discussion on ACE 2011 View more presentations from Oleg Shilovitsky

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