Thoughts before SuiteWorld19 – Delivering PLM on cloud ERP platform?

Thoughts before SuiteWorld19 – Delivering PLM on cloud ERP platform?

I’m coming to SuiteWorlds 2019 in a few weeks. I visited it last year and I liked it. If you missed my last year blog articles here are links to catch up  – SuiteWorld 2018 and Manufacturing Progression and Oracle NetSuite and Cloud Bridge between PLM and ERP.

One of the topics I’m looking forward to learning more is about platforms. In modern enterprise software platforms are more important than ever. The growing role of platforms in cloud delivery becomes a very important topic. Here is a very short video of Peter Bilello of CIMdata speaking about platforms, cloud, and different applications. Watch the video and draw your conclusion.

You can host existing PLM on Amazon (AWS)- this is what most of traditional PLM vendors are doing these days. Check for example, how Siemens PLM is delivering Teamcenter via AWS here. You can deliver applications on AWS as a cloud service (SaaS) application – this is what OpenBOM does (disclaimer- I’m co-founder and CEO). You can deliver PLM on a platform such as Salesforce, which is mostly CRM platform. This is what PropelPLM does.

Is it possible to deliver PLM on a cloud platform such as NetSuite? This is an interesting question to ask in my view…  In ERP world, PLM applications are usually either extension of existing features (like you can see it in SAP) or foreign application even if it is acquired by ERP vendor (Agile PLM is the best example in my view).

Cloud architecture gives here some advantages and opportunity to think beyond traditional PLM-ERP boundary. NetSuite is one of the largest providers of cloud ERP technologies today and therefore as a platform potentially can become a place to grow PLM business. Is it ready to grow other applications? There are many partners delivering solutions on NetSuite platform. Check SuiteApp store for applications and partners. Here are applications filtered for manufacturing vertical.

You can check SuiteWorld19 catalog of sessions here. Here is my favorite – Rev Up Engineering with Advanced Bill of Materials and Engineering Change Order Management [OPS1092SES]

For some organizations, managing changes to bills of materials–including accurately tracking changes and the effective dates of revisions and components–can present a significant challenge. Join this session to learn about the features and functionality that NetSuite Advanced Bill of Materials (BOM) and Engineering Change Orders provide in single and multiple-location environments. By the end of the session, you’ll understand the considerations you must take into account before implementing these features, and you’ll participate in a demo that includes updating revisions, making mass changes, and building work orders to different revisions.

While the platform is important, I think the integrations of data and applications plays one of the key roles to deliver successful solutions to manufacturing companies. In the past, integrations were strongly associated with “pain”. Maybe cloud can change the game and new integrations can solve old problems.

What is my conclusion? NetSuite is probably the largest live cloud ERP available today. Is it ready to be turned into a platform like some other cloud businesses? Is there an advantage to deliver applications on vertical platforms like NetSuite, Salesforce and some others? We can see some interesting trends in development. Integration is remaining one of the biggest problems to speed up cloud development for manufacturing. 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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