2PLM Newsletter

John Stark Associates                                                                                                                              June 19, 2017 - Vol19 #4

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Professional PLM [1]: The Premise
by Roger Tempest
More feedback has been received since the articles on professionalism and the PLM Manager role (2PLM June 05).

There was support for Nate Hartman's view that: "PLM is a methodology by which other professions will do their work. It is those other professions that need to evolve to embrace the tools, methods, and data forms brought about by the evolution in technology and practice. I believe we will continue to have designers, analysts, manufacturing planners, supply chain specialists, etc. They will simply do their work differently as a result of the digital information architecture available to them."

Bryan Fraser of the NASA John H. Glenn Research Center observes that: "experience has shown me that one cannot adequately architect a PLM environment (i.e. - people, processes, tools) without possessing deep, direct experience implementing PLM"; and argues that: "it requires the appropriate aptitudes along with many years of acquired knowledge and experience working throughout the entire product lifecycle. [Good PLM specialists] are not made through coursework, they are born with aptitudes that allow them to acquire and absorb the requisite knowledge and then effectively leverage their aptitudes and knowledge that further refines them in the furnace of experience while adding value for the customer)."

Colin Bull of SQS feels that the disciplines that PLM covers already have a number of recognised career paths. For example: Requirements and System Engineering, Design and Engineering, Manufacturing and Engineering, Plant Engineering, Service, MRO, Quality, and Portfolio Management are all disciplines with their own careers.

All of which indicates that PLM is a discipline that cuts across many others that have their own professional development paths; and may be difficult to teach as a coherent, widely-applicable syllabus.

The problem with this line of thought is that it is difficult to make it lead to any change in the status quo. Everything stays as it is. And we are not satisfied with the way that it is.

To improve the situation for PLM practitioners there will need to be a very positive premise that has widespread and enthusiastic support. The premise is, therefore, that:-

  • PLM is a specialty in its own right;
  • of sufficient complexity that its practitioners should be certified to carry it out;
  • of sufficient value to the business world to warrant its being recognised as a profession; and,
  • steps should be taken to establish that professional status.

This means that, to continue the drive for improvement, we must first establish why PLM is special.


Roger Tempest is co-founder of the PLMIG. Comments are welcome via profession@plmig.com

Professional PLM [2]: Is PLM Special?
by Roger Tempest
There was feedback on this too, including this point by Erik Løber of BoostPLM: "As a professional consultant in the area I meet 'PLM specialists' in many companies. In most cases they have a past as technical assistants in a limited technical area and then after many years good work have been promoted to 'PLM specialists'. However, they often miss a holistic view and overview across the value chain. E.g., most PLM specialists from Engineering have no clue about the requirements from Operations - and vice versa."

"Furthermore, they have little knowledge about good practices (I avoid the term 'best practice', since companies' business models and legacy heavily influence the appropriate way to perform PLM in reality). So all in all - I am very much in favour of the proposal."

Holger Schrader of ZF is another who is in favour of professionalisation: "To my point of view we need a defined competence for PLM. It is absolutely clear that PLM is usually not a core competence within a company. As PLM is a concept, it has to be fulfilled by different functions within a company beside their other daily business."

"Where this happens with other disciplines, such as project management or human resource management, the professional responsibilities are properly defined."

Holger also makes another good point. A PLM Manager is unlikely to become CEO armed with this specialist but unrecognised responsibility - whereas the other professional specialisms are all valid steps on the career path to the top job. 

Stéphane Heno of DCNS feels that PLM practitioners need to be more professional, but is concerned that a professional qualification might focus too much on the IT aspects: "For me, PLM is a way to improve business performance by acting on peoples' skills, on methods, on organisation, and even on products, supported by an IT tool. I am afraid that the qualification will recognize only IT tool skills (because they are the easiest to assess) and so will transform PLM Practitioners into IT specialists. In my opinion IT (regardless of its cost) is the least important part of the PLM business change process."

And he continues with a point that many people will agree with: "PLM is too important to let it be done by IT specialists."

In fact, PLM is too important to let it be done by anyone who does not understand PLM. The PLM industry needs to make this clear, and establishing PLM as a profession would be the most powerful way of doing this. The question is: how can it be done? The answer will be the subject of the next article.


Roger Tempest is co-founder of the PLMIG. Comments are welcome via profession@plmig.com.


PLM Citations
According to Google Scholar, as of June 16, 2017 Product Lifecycle Management: Paradigm for 21st Century Product Realisation, the most popular PLM publication, had been cited 822 times in journal articles, technical reports, books and theses.

Volume 2, Product Lifecycle Management: The Devil is in the Details, had been cited 17 times.

Citing publications referenced since the previous issue of 2PLM include:

  • I. Hakkarainen (Helsinki Metropolia University of Applied Sciences, Finland); Solidworks-työkalujen ja PDM-ominaisuuksien mahdollisuudet suunnittelun tehostamisessa Details
  • N. Norazlin, A. Hashim, M. Fauadi, Z. Fu (Universiti Teknikal Malaysia Melaka, Malaysia), T. Ito (Tokushima University, Japan); Rapid Time Response: A solution for Manufacturing Issue Details

  • J. Garcia Agis, P. Brett (Norwegian University of Science and Technology, Trondheim, Norway), H. Gaspar (Norwegian University of Science and Technology, Aalesund, Norway), A. Keane, A. Ebrahimi (Ulstein International AS, Ulsteinvik, Norway); Preparing for a Digital Future - Experiences and Implications from a Maritime Domain Perspective Details
  • M. Ward, O. Uflewska, TC Wong (University of Strathclyde, Glasgow, UK), S. Halliday (Rolls-Royce plc, Derby, UK); Three dimensions of maturity required to achieve future state, technology-enabled manufacturing supply chains Details


July Session of "Basics of PLM" Online Course  
The May 2017 session of the online Basics of PLM course (details), which started on May 15, has moved into its 6th week.

The July 2017 session of the course will start on Monday July 3 and will run until Wednesday August 30.

"Basics of PLM" is the first module in the PLM Institute's online modular training program.

The eight parts of the "Basics of PLM" course run on a weekly basis, allowing students to complete the course in about 2 months. The total student involvement for the course is about 35 hours.  

"Basics of PLM" gives a general introduction to Product Lifecycle Management (PLM) from a multidisciplinary business perspective. It covers all the main components of PLM, and will help those working with PLM in a company to understand the basics of PLM and why it's so important. Its objective is to allow them to participate more fully in a company's PLM Initiative and other PLM activities. 

An Introduction to ISO 9001-2015
by Scott Cleveland
The focus of ISO 9001-2015 is the adoption of a quality management system. Compliance with ISO 9001-2015 is a strategic decision for a manufacturing organization that can help to improve its overall performance and provide a sound basis for sustainable development initiatives.

It could also help them get more business because many companies prefer to do business with companies that are compliant.

The ISO 9001-2015 standard at the 30,000 foot level ....

Plan to Manage Quality
ISO 9001-2015 promotes the adoption of a process approach to develop and improve the effectiveness of a quality management system that will enhance customer satisfaction.

Quality management principles include: customer focus; leadership; engagement of people; process approach; improvement; evidence-based decision making; and relationship management.

Some benefits of process management are: Cost efficiency; Business agility; Compliance ease and visibility; Customer focus; and employee satisfaction.

Management Leadership
Top management is ultimately responsible for their company's quality management system. They must communicate the importance of quality management and create a corporate culture centered on quality.

Risk Management
Conforming to ISO 9001-2015 requires companies to plan and implement actions to address risks. A sound risk management process will establish a basis for increasing the effectiveness of a company's quality management efforts.

As a result, risk assessments will become a part of many of a company's processes. The recognition of potential risk will kick off the risk management procedure.

Operational Procedures
A company's process approach will help them achieve their goals and objectives in accordance with their quality policy and the strategic direction of their company. Managing their processes will increase their efficiency. It will help them make improvements based on an ongoing analysis of their processes.

Analysis and Improvement
Companies will continually evaluate their performance, their procedures and the effectiveness of their quality management system. They will retain documentation as evidence of their results. They will look for ways to improve their procedures and their quality manual.

Periodic internal audits will provide inputs to improving processes; improvements to the quality manual; and compliance to ISO 9001-2015.

Companies will select and implement enhancements to meet customer requirements and enhance customer satisfaction.

The Objective of Compliance
To continually improve the effectiveness of a company's quality management system so that it can provide the ultimate in customer satisfaction. Compliance should contribute to increased revenues and higher profits.

Contact me if you would like some help with ISO 9001-2015.


Scott Cleveland can be contacted on +1 408-464-6387


PLM Software can ease your ISO Audit
by Scott Cleveland

ISO calls for your company to have written procedures. You need to follow those procedures and you need to be able to show that you are following them. ISO doesn't tell you what those procedures need to look like. It doesn't tell you how to do your job. It just tells you to document it.

Your quality manual will include documentation of all of your procedures. The International Standards Organization [ISO] understands that in order to improve quality, you must have procedures [processes] in place.

Analyze & Improve
In order to improve how your company works, you must know how things work. Even if you don't have written procedures, workers know what their job requires and where they fit into the bigger picture.

If you haven't already documented your procedures, you will need to. Once documented, you can measure performance - how much time is spent on each step.

Some analysis questions:

  • Are there some activities that don't add value to your end product?
  • Are there some steps that can be done by a computer rather than a human?
  • Are there some steps that can be taken to improve your product?
  • Do you pay attention to product safety?
  • Do your procedures take into account the needs of your customer?
  • How do you interact with your customers?


These questions are just the beginning of your analysis. The idea behind the ISO requirements is that process improvements will lead to efficiency and quality improvements.

Looking for Software?
A company's process approach will help it achieve its goals and objectives in accordance with its quality policy and strategic direction. Managing its processes will increase its efficiency. It will help the company make improvements based on an ongoing analysis of its processes.

At a minimum the software that you select will need the following capabilities:

  • Secure file storage [document management]
  • Electronic signatures
  • Access controls
  • Email management
  • Workflow [business process management]
  • Version controls

Most of the PLM [product lifecycle management] software packages have all of the tools listed above and more that are needed to help you be ISO 9001 compliant. Start with a good requirements document.

Selecting the right software for your company is not a simple task. Contact me if you would like some help.


Scott Cleveland can be contacted on +1 408-464-6387  


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PLM News

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Dassault Systemes announced a definitive agreement to acquire AITAC BV. Details

Hexagon AB announced that it completed the acquisition of FASys Industrie-EDV-Systeme GmbH. Details

OpenText announced a definitive agreement to acquire Covisint Corporation. Details



The IGE+XAO Group announced that consolidated turnover for 3rd quarter 2016/2017 was 7,512,051 euros. Details 


ESI Group announced that Dr. Ravi Raveendra joins ESI's Scientific Committee. Details

Gerber Technology announced that Brandy Moore joined Gerber as Vice President, Global Service and Aftermarket. Details

3D Systems announced the addition of John J. Tracy to the Company's Board of Directors. Details



Centric Software announced that Carhartt selected Centric Software to provide its Product Lifecycle Management (PLM) solution. Details

CSI announced that Autonumis chose to implement DDM to manage their SOLIDWORKS data. Details

CSI announced that MTech Design Solutions Limited chose to implement DDM. Details

Hexagon PPM announced that Hyundai Engineering Co., Ltd. selected Intergraph Smart Enterprise Portal. Details

Infor announced that Whelen Engineering Company selected Product Lifecycle Management (PLM) Accelerate. Details

Mentor announced that Navistar, Inc. uses Capital Publisher. Details 


ANSYS announced new solutions. Details

CCE announced an update of its CAD data interoperability libraries. Details

C3D Labs announced C3D Toolkit 2017. Details

Elysium announced InfiPoints Ver.4.0. Details

ESI Group announced Pro-SiVIC 2017. Details

GTX Corp. announced GTXRaster CAD 2018 Series for AutoCAD 2018. Details

IntelliCAD Technology Consortium announced CMS IntelliCAD 8.3 PE Cloud. Details

Lectra announced Lectra Fashion PLM 4.0. Details

Modelon announced the Jet Propulsion Library. Details

MSC Software Corp. announced MSC Apex Grizzly. Details



Formtek announced a partnership with Arondor to provide Engineering Data Management on the Alfresco Digital Business Platform. Details

Spatial Corp. announced that it joined ADAPT, the Alliance for the Development of Additive Processing Technologies. Details



AutoForm Engineering GmbH announced integration of the generation of reports in Excel format within AutoFormplus R7. Details

CADENAS PARTsolutions announced that Brennan Industries launched a 3D CAD catalog powered by CADENAS PARTsolutions. Details

Catalog Data Solutions announced that Hy-Lok USA selected the CDS Cloud Catalog solution. Details

Centric Software announced a success story with CamelBak. Details

CMstat announced a YouTube video on "What Difference Does a CM-focused Product Data System Make". Details

CONTACT Software announced that CONTACT Open World 2017 will be held on 28 and 29 June, 2017 at the Maritim Hotel am Schlossgarten Fulda. Details

The Coordinate Metrology Society announced their 33rd annual event from July 17-21, 2017 at the Snowbird Meeting and Convention Center in Snowbird, UT. Details

Dassault Systemes announced a renewed agreement with Rockwell Collins to extend their PLM journey using the 3DEXPERIENCE platform as the PLM foundation. Details

EOS announced the launch of its Life Cycle Solutions group. Details

Hexagon announced that Intergraph Process, Power & Marine - acquired by Hexagon AB in July 2010 - will be known as Hexagon PPM. Details

Hexagon announced plans to invest approximately 90 million EUR in a new 52,000-square-metre, state-of-the-art production facility in Hongdao, China. Details

MasterControl announced a new white paper, "eTMF Management Essentials." Details

ModuleWorks announced that SmartCAMcnc chose ModuleWorks for CNC verification. Details

NI announced a new Internet of Things (IoT) teaching approach. Details

Omnify Software announced that Frost & Sullivan recognized Omnify Software with the 2017 North American Frost & Sullivan Award for Customer Value Leadership. Details

PROLIM announced its 12th anniversary. Details

PTC announced selection of Creo by several companies. Details

PTC announced that HIROTEC Corporation selected the ThingWorx Platform. Details

Sopheon announced an update and review of the business. Details

SSI announced integration of PLM and CAD at Ingalls Shipbuilding. Details



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