Does Autodesk Smells PLM? First impression from Moscow Forum.

Does Autodesk Smells PLM? First impression from Moscow Forum.

Things are busy for me this week. It is mostly because of Autodesk Forum in Moscow. I’ve been invited to talk here about PLM trends and to run a roundtable discussion about PLM. My presentations are today. However, I wanted to share some of my thoughts from the first day. Sorry for my provoking title on this post. At the same time, this is probably part of my real interest in being here. Autodesk made some bold steps towards PLM. Navigate to one of my previous blog posts – Autodesk PLM: Fast Second? and Autodesk Vault: Enterprise PDM or PLM? to have a context for these thoughts. So, today I’m sharing some of my preliminary thoughts about what I’ve seen during the first day of Autodesk Forum in Moscow.

Autodesk Moscow Forum at a glance

Some general information for my non-Russian readers. The event is big – 1500 attendees (not including Autodesk employees) In Autodesk business terms, Russia is part of BRIC countries. Russia is having their own ups and downs as well as an influence of the world economy as well. During the press conference for journalists and bloggers, Autodesk Russia management team mentioned some aspects related to local Autodesk market and the state of local economy. My short outcome – economy rebound almost to pre-crisis level, customers are focusing on efficiency (also from the communication standpoint as well as from the product usage standpoint), there are few large segments of market related to the core local industries; cloud and mobile are two catching terms, private cloud is one way to go, public the internet is another one. Manufacturing sector of Autodesk Russia sounds excited about future Autodesk move to PLM, but mostly focuses on the discussion to understand problems and specific of local manufacturers. You can see below a picture of Autodesk Russia Management as well as nice (and destructive) view from 25th floor of Holiday Inn Sokol’niki – the location press conference and Autodesk Forum took place.

PDM Talks

I attended few presentations about PDM by local Autodesk professionals as well as invited people from Autodesk in Europe. PDM is an official term Autodesk is using for manufacturing domain. At the same time, you can see that some of the slides really smell “PLM” terms – Process Improvements, Design Reuse, ECO, Compliance, Suppliers.

As usual, for PDM and PLM forums, it was a talk about ROI (in this forum it was about PDM). Some interesting examples and numbers were presented. Take a look on the slides below.

The most impressive number – 40% of productive engineering time wasted in data management.

Vault Collaboration in AEC – BIM360

I wanted to note AEC-Collaboration topic separately. Even if this is not related to PLM and manufacturing, it was interesting to see a strong association between Vault Collaboration in AEC and some fundamental PLM concepts. The main difference is actually related to the integration with specific AEC products. The AEC PLM formula looks like – AEC tools’ integration + BlueStreak and BuzzSaw. It is interesting enough Autodesk included Buzzsaw as a cloud option.

Cloud and Mobile

Even if it is not specifically related to PLM, but I wanted to note that “Cloud” and “Mobile” topics were the most widely used by everybody here. It came as a bit surprise to me. Despite the fact, that cloud is one of my favorite topics, in general, I was skeptical about how quicky cloud will ramp-up, especially outside of US. It is interesting that Autodesk presents their historical view on Autodesk cloud going back to 1999 and initial introduction of Buzzsaw software as a service.

Clearly, mobile devices and mobile are two major driving forces behind the cloud development. It was good to meet Tal Weiss of Autodesk. Tal is developer manager of AutoCAD WS – a leading mobile computing product line. Interesting numbers about AutoCAD WS: 2.5 million users, 3.2 million downloads on iOS and Android platforms, 5 million files downloaded, 1.6 million unique users. Tal was talking about new features of AutoCAD WS 1.3. The list of features confirms in my view, the growing demand for additional functionality in AutoCAD WS to allow users to do some more work using mobile devices and tablets.

An interesting note related to AutoCAD WS and Cloud. According to Autodesk, AutoCAD WS can be configured to work in the “private cloud” option, which can remove security concerns coming from large corporate customers.

A very short conclusion. The first day was impressive and energizing.  PLM word was mentioned a bit, but it still will take time to understand what does it mean for Autodesk and how to call it. Today is a second day with many talks about PLM, including invited talks by Autodesk partners in Russia – providers of PDM/ PLM software. It will be interesting to learn more about local PLM perspective. I will share my presentation and notes later today, so stay tuned.
Best, Oleg


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