There are not so many pure PLM events in this world. Product Innovation (PI) formerly known as PLM innovation is one of them. PI is CIO-led community for manufacturers. The objective is to learn. The event is not huge, but cherry-picked a well balanced set of customers and vendors to come together and speak about PLM implementations and challenges of engineering and manufacturing. I’ve been following many PI events and attended few of them in Europe and U.S.
This time, I’m delighted to share that I will be a chair of PI PLMx Event that will happen next month (19-20 February) in Hamburg, Germany. If you’re in manufacturing and never heard about this conference, it worth a look. And if you already made a decision and coming to Hamburg, I will be very much excited to meet and talk to you.
The event this year will be focusing on discussing the opportunities offered by PLM and its vital role in the digitization of industry. As part of my preparation for the event, I’ve been browsing through the list of presenters and topics. You can see agenda here.
One of the most interesting trends in PLM, is to see expanding of PLM technologies and implementations to cover broader scope of business and technical functions in engineering and manufacturing organizations. I was focusing on sessions that in my view, giving a good confirmation that the process of digital transformation is underway in many manufacturing organizations in the world. In such context, several sessions caught my special attention. So, I decided I will share it with you.
Design Anywhere, Build Anywhere – Integrating Systems and Processes into One PLM Concept at Airbus by Andrew Wall, Head of Product Data Management UK, Airbus Defense and Space.
Airbus Defence & Space (Earth Observation, Navigation & Science) is the result of several independent business units coming together under 1 umbrella to deliver a joined up approach for Development, Production, Launch and In-Orbit Support to a primary European customer (European Space Agency) although not exclusively. This means that over the years multiple tools, cultures processes have been inherited and form a very complex set of legacy interactions all of which could be harmonised to reduce costs and improve efficiencies. Creating a common ecosystem and one PLM concept across the Airbus Group. Understanding Airbus’ “Design anywhere, Build Anywhere” approach and the benefits and challenges to this system. Integrating the global network into Airbus’ PLM process.What are the common challenges to global systems interoperability?
Focus on Quality and not on Happy Engineers – Don’t Underestimate the Disruptive Nature of PLM by Hilmar Brunn, Head Global PLM, Mettler-Toledo International Inc.
The goal of a PLM system is not to automate engineering data processing and to share files across departments. The ultimate goal is to drive all (closed loop) business processes to excellence. The keystone of this approach is to establish a single source of truth for product data. With this single source of truth the iron curtains between R&D, Supply Chain & Operations, Service and Sales should come down making the introduction of a PLM system is disruptive for an organization. But in many cases this is not very well understood. Therefore, it is no surprise that Gartner stated in its Predicts 2016: Digital Business Will Disrupt Product Design, Manufacturing and PLM by 2018 80% of discrete manufacturer will report little progress in automating design through manufacturing processes.
No More Documents in PLM? by Sami Grönstrand, VP – Process & Operations Development, Outotec
In an ideal case, the PLM concept is optimized on digital, structured data and obsoleting documents with unstructured data. Outotec has embarked on the PLM journey, driving towards re-use of designs and structured data, managing product lifecycles all the way to closing the loop with IoT. Having said that, the PLM concept must still add value to current business here and now. A clear need emerged for efficient document management within PLM, and a solution was developed to combine the product structures with document management capabilities. Document automation, workflows, revisions and access control, PDF rendering, transmittals etc. also for the “non-product related” documents such as project management, scheduling, expediting, are all handled inside the solution, thus streamlining the collaboration and reducing manual labor and errors. PLM is creating business value!
Harnessing the power of a Lightweight PLM Backbone to deliver MBSE and the Digital Twin by Martin Eigner, Chair – Institute of Virtual Product Engineering, Technical University of Kaiserslautern
A major prerequisite to harnessing the power of technologies such as the Digital Twin is the ability to trace data across the entire lifecycle, powered by a fully integrated engineering backbone. However, to date such a system does not yet exist and in fact most organisations are not on track to achieving this in the near future. The obstacles are plentiful and a workable model needs to be established for the industry to follow. Martin will join us in Hamburg to present a framework for a lightweight federated PLM, a concept that focuses on creating new models and standards for cooperation based on MBSE. It allows for better traceability of data and ultimately enables the opportunities of today’s technology.
Cross-Enterprise Collaboration in Product Development by Alfred Katzenbach, Executive Business Consultant, Katzenbach Executive Consulting
The automotive industry is a good example for worldwide cooperation between the OEM´s as well as with suppliers. No automotive company can survive in future without intensive collaboration in product development and manufacturing.To speed up development and reduce ramp-up time, it is crucial to do development and approvals based virtually. Concepts (and buzzwords) like Digital Prototype or Digital Twin are all around. Doing this intensive work in common, a collaboration concept based on standards. There are different standards being used across the V lifecycle in product development. The talk gives an overview of these standards.Using the example of JT, the process, how these standards have been developed and approved will be explained, followed by the description of best practices, not only in Automotive.
PLM in Unilever: Fast-Moving Product Lifecycle Management, Cees Stellema, PLM director, digital transformation, Unilever
Unilever is one of the world’s leading fast-moving consumer goods companies, with more than 400 brands globally and over 2 billion consumers using one of their products on any given day. One of the main challenges of conducting such a vast operation is sharing data and managing information across the entire organisation, taking into account the wide network and diverse population of the group. In terms of product data, skill and efficiency is needed to identify the success of particular brands and the risk to each should any problems occur. PLM plays a crucial role in connecting the dots across the entire organisation and ultimately improving top line profits.
PLM in Manufacturing as Backbone of the Smart Factory – A Closer Look at the Value of the Digital Thread by Susanne Lauda, Director, Global Advanced Manufacturing Technology, AGCO Corporation
Today, AGCO is increasing the efficiency, quality and safety of its manufacturing programs by pioneering the use of technologies such as augmented reality, cobots/mobots, additive manufacturing and connecting it all through the organisation with the Digital Thread. PLM not only fits into this infrastructure but in fact plays a key role in providing the data necessary to make it successful. Susanne will be joining us in Hamburg to explain how PLM is expected to provide the backbone to the Smart Factory project and ultimately be a key component of launching AGCO into a digital future.
Social media and bloggers
Recently I had long exchange of notes about trajectories of consulting in PLM and different PLM strategies with my long time PLM blogging buddy – Jos Voskuil. As PLM enthusiast and visionary, Jos is looking forward and see digital transformation in PLM. However, as PLM coach and business consulting he is working with large companies implementing “classical” PLM. To catch up on our discussion, navigate here – Why PLM consultant are questioning new tools and asking about cloud PLM exit strategy. Jos and I will be together at PI PLMx and I look forward to turn our discussion into video. I hope Jos will agree to make it happen.
What is my conclusion? I can see very rich agenda for upcoming PLMX in Hamburg. It is very interesting and encouraging to see topics such as digital transformation of supply chain, digital thread, alignment of business goals and PLM processes as well as using standards in communication. This is a good confirmation of PLM leadership in transforming industry from CAD file management to digital transformation of business processes in value chain. Just my thoughts…
Want to learn more about PLM? Check out my new PLM Book website.
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.