Many companies today suffer not from a lack of data in the product set necessary to make it but rather from the data being created and managed in such a way that other departments either don’t know about it or can’t find it with ease. How often do we hear, “The left hand doesn’t know what the right hand is doing?” Often companies place more emphasis on how each department is organized and not enough emphasis on organizing their business processes where information flows from its data producers to its data consumers. This dis”organization” leads each department to create their own methods for producing and using much the same information, resulting in duplicate efforts and waste.
Companies must have streamlined product design, development, and manufacturing processes through the entire lifecycle. Engineering notably has a significant role as producer of data. However, Engineering is not the only data producer in the company. Marketing may produce the marketing specifications from which Engineering develops design specifications. Quality may produce inspection plans that suppliers, through Purchasing, must be aware of so the supply chain understands what the receiving inspection requirements are. Manufacturing may have manufacturability limitations/specifications (“can’t make it”) that need to be shared back to Engineering. Each department in your company is a producer/consumer of the product data set. PLM can break down the silos of data so that each department works from the “same story”.
Ask yourself these questions:
· Where is the lack of real-time information hurting your company?
· How often do Purchasing, Manufacturing, Quality, and Sales know about your product changes after it is too late because your CAD systems and ERP system aren’t talking?
· How often does your company perform reworks because a part was made to the wrong specification?
· Do you have the tools to effectively manage both the data and the workflow necessary to see a new customer requirement through it inception, design, manufacturing, and release?
It is time to make effective organization of your processes with a PLM solution that can easily adapt in function and scale as your business grows.
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