Agile Software Corporation, a product lifecycle management (PLM) company in of San Jose, Calif. has announced it will support the materials declaration management standard produced by the Association Connecting Electronics Industries (IPC), known as IPC-1752. The standard establishes electronic data formats and supporting standardized form to simplify the exchange of materials declaration information across a manufacturer’s supply chain.
Prior to the adoption of IPC-1752, there was no standardized way for companies to exchange data on the materials content of components and assemblies, so the industry was communicating in a Tower of Babel data stream. Agile notes that IPC-1752 simplifies the reporting of materials content by providing a common data format for exchange on materials information. “This allows companies to address RoHS compliance while continuing to bring products to market quickly and maximize profitability,” Agile says in a statement.
IPC-1752 was released in early March. The standard was circulated in draft form last May. Some companies, in hurry to standardize their data collection, started using the standard in draft form. Those companies will not find it easy to make the transition to the final form. “The form has changed dramatically, and not just the look and feel of it, but the XML,” says Dries D’Hooghe, director of product strategy and marketing at Agile. “That’s a big problem for those who used the unreleased version.”
D’Hooghe notes that Agile started to work with companies to meet RoHS compliance more than two years ago. Agile developed compliance support to help put compliance activities into the business process of its customers. “For most companies, every time something changed in the BOM, we had to do an analysis of compliance because that was not part of a standard process,” says D’Hooghe. Agile now works with companies to make compliance assessment part of a company’s standard business process. “Compliance needs to be embedded in the process. I need the engineers to look at compliance as well as availability and cost.”
Agile offers a number services to help companies meet environmental compliance, including setting up a management system for meeting environmental regulations. In a statement, Agile lists the functions a company needs to develop in order to meet compliance effectively:
Collaborate with suppliers to collect material data for supplier material declarations
Manage bill of substances information and rollup compliance information using a variety of scenarios
Generate an environmental view of the product to analyze it for environmental risk.
Manage regulatory documentation and specifications.
Track recovery manifests and disposal certificates of destruction.
Manage compliance of outsourced recovery partners through proactive audits and closed-loop actions.