PLM Solutions are Narrow Focused!

When we talk of PLM, first image that comes to mind is CAD. Major PLM vendors have most of their focus on discrete manufacturing mainly on Automotive & Aerospace .  If we go sector by sector and analyze what traditional PLM are trying to implement, we can find a huge gap in what is required and what is showcased. Here are some examples from few sectors

CAD Centric PLM

CAD Centric PLM


Energy: In Power and Energy sector, PLM has presence more from construction of facility and not from perspective of managing products which are produced. The new products or existing products have a major part as process/ formulations. These are not focus when it comes to energy sector pitch from PLM vendors. Other important aspect which is missing is regulations & how regulations can impact both construction and product.

Life science: Most of major solutions in health care focus on Program Management & at the most Label art work. But that is not the product. The product is much more complex in pharma. If we take Med Devices, BOM is complex and compliance of product is complex. These aspects are not in focus for most of the solutions (OOTB). Most of the times, these are customized for customer and need lot of work.

Construction & Architecture: If we look at PLM in architecture and construction, there is much more to a product, innovation or project than managing and creating drawing and sketches.

Service Sector: I feel innovation and product development goes beyond traditional manufacturing industry. PLM solutions need to look at service sector. Today service sector is more than half the world’s economy and is not addressed by traditional PLM solutions. Traditional solutions have ingredients to help service sector to manage innovations, product portfolios and product details. These products also have a complex development lifecycle with a great need of collaboration between many parties. For example in telecom industry, products launched by companies are more and more complex in nature with multiple services bundled together. These products need compliance management and also there is a great need of overall program management.

Conclusion: I feel current PLM solutions have a myopic view about PLM which it will have to change and use existing platform to solve challenges of other industry. PLM should be more process & data centric than CAD centric.

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About the Author

Rahul Deshpande

Rahul is Principal Consultant at Brainwave Consulting Group – a cutting edge domain consulting group for New Product Introduction and Product Lifecycle Management.   Rahul brings over 16 years of experience in developing Technology and Business Solution for the Manufacturing Industry. He has worked with several clients in the manufacturing space in multiple roles spanning consulting, account management , Solution Architect and Program Management roles across the New Product Value Chain from Requirement / Enquiry management to launch of Product. He brings in cross functional experience covering Pre-Sales& Marketing, Business Planning, &IT Solution deployment. Rahul has worked along with the PLM ISV & Customers to define innovative solution and developed products for BOM Cost analysis and Sourcing Analytics on ENOVIA platform. He has penned different papers on usage of PLM for different processes & industries while addressing their business challenges. He brings a unique 360o view of the IT industry, and has significant contributions in the areas of IT Strategy, Program Management & Product Management.   Apart from holding a Bachelor of Technology in Electronics Rahul holds a Management degree from SIBM(Symbiosis Institute of Business Management). Rahul is associated with SIBM as visiting faculty for Innovation Management & International Business

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