PLM Challenges – Cloud, Modeling and Simulation, and Integration Implications for PLM Implementations for the Enterprise
There are several broad industry product development and IT trends impacting the landscape for PLM implementations. The trend to deliver more and more of the core product development activities through virtual simulation over physical testing processes has continued to accelerate over the last decade. With more and more simulation codes being available on desktop and departmental computing resources, there has been a “democratization” of modeling and simulation that previously had been only available to large industry or government players. In the past, the standard practice was that simulation work processes had no direct integration to design and development processes. With the increased complexity of innovation development, the need for more seamless design and simulation processes has been the trend.
Separately, the advent of the Cloud (network, server and software capabilities) has offered promises of increased agility and lower infrastructure costs. This trend has lagged in the traditional PLM work processes. Even today a majority of PLM implementations that are in production are based on highly configured implementations that address vertical work processes within the product development to manufacturing continuum. Cloud solutions by their very nature must have broader based user experiences, and therefore not be customized to meet any one company’s processes. Moving users from highly customized software solutions to more industry standard solutions had been a significant challenge and has stunted the growth of Cloud in this space (separately, cyber security concerns represent another challenge).
Given the gap in PLM software that truly is deployable without company-specific customization and the trend to deliver more simulation-based work processes, one would expect that the current state of the art is that design, simulation and information management solutions will continue to be isolated offerings. Those PLM software companies that are able to bridge these work processes in a more seamless solution that can be delivered in Cloud-based offerings will have a significant value proposition to offer. Product development organizations that are able to implement these solutions will have a significant edge in delivering new innovation to market.
One of the key open questions is: How can a company protect its intellectual capability in its product development processes while leveraging industry generic PLM solutions?
COE 2017 is one of the few places where a critical mass of experts across design, simulation and information management will come together to talk the nitty-gritty of addressing these industry trends. We are hoping to include you in the discussion.
Jim Escoe, COE Director