Hi Elizabeth, Nadine - I think that what you're suggesting is exactly what's happening to make PLM more affordable. If you look at some of the new systems coming to market (Autodesk PLM360, Solair, Arena that RalphKC mentions) and even the cloud-based offerings of the 'historical' PLM providers, the technology is now within the reach of even small manufacturers - and they probably have less complex issues with the overlap problem!
Arena was one of the earliest ( maybe first) cloud based PLM providers. Started in 2000. Very effective tool, offered on a subscription basis, and at a cost point that is attractive to smaller companies. Their success is what drove some of the big ERP and CAD providers to re-evaluate the offering of PLM tools over the cloud. Should be on anyones list if they are evaluating PLM for their companies.
I didn't think of the cost-prohibitive angle, but you're right, Nadine. But I know there are some cloud-based PLM solutions out there now. I wonder if that could help solve the cost issue by allowing subscription-based pricing and the like.
Nice points, Tony. As you point out, we've seen all of these areas of software expand beyond their original premise (ERP now includes CRM and SCM modules). But PLM has expanded more than the others. Much of this can be attributed to Siemens. As well as touching ERP, CRM and SCM, PLM also now encompasses visualization, CAE, and simulation.
Product development selections are generally made by Product Managers or Marketing Managers (in many companies, Strategists). The data added by PLM, and the ability to connect that to a broader range of types of data, is part of the Big Data promise. The point is, once data is in the database (regardless of what technology is used) it can be used and manipulated. The first step is getting the data.
Thanks for this perspective, Tony. I think you're right that PLM--a term and technology that's been bandied about for years--is finally getting its due and coming into its own in the enterprise. Increasingly competitive markets and the increased need for speed in terms of innovation are definitely promoting this trend.
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