IMS and 2PLM, Denis Senpere, BPM, Locomotive DfX

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2PLM Newsletter

John Stark Associates                                                                                                                                               July 5, 2010 - Vol13 #7

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IMS and the 2PLM Community
 
The Intelligent Manufacturing Systems (IMS) initiative encourages the formation of international research consortia to address 21st century manufacturing technologies and systems to benefit humanity. IMS members include the European Union (EU), Norway, Mexico, Korea, Switzerland and the USA. The chairing region in IMS is currently the EU, where IMS is supported by the 7th Framework Programme's (FP7) Cooperation Themes ICT and NMP.
The June 2010 European IMS Newsletter featured an article about the 2PLM e-zine Community and IMS. Since its launch in 1998, 2PLM has developed into the largest independent PLM community with an international circulation of over 11,000.

 

   

Roger Tempest talks to Denis Senpere
 
It is almost exactly 3 years since Oracle acquired Agile, and PLM began to compete with Oracle's many other offerings as part of the hive of activity within the company. This is almost an exact mirror for the way that PLM has to compete for attention within the management of user companies, so I asked Denis Senpere for his views on how the growth and adoption of PLM can be maximised.

RT: PLM might not seem like front page news, but do you see ways in which its profile could be raised amongst business people in the face of CRM, ERP, and other improvement initiatives?

DS: Over the last decade, PLM projects have evolved from engineering-centric, with only a few decision makers from engineering and IT departments, to enterprise-wide, multi-discipline projects. These have a high impact on business processes and organizations, involving multiple stakeholders. PLM is one of the very few initiatives which are proven to drive more revenue, reduce cost and enhance agility in the discrete and process industries. PLM is always about innovation management and operational efficiency; this is why we often meet with top management and board level during the maturing phases of a PLM project. You are right, the strategic nature of a PLM initiative is not always perceived at the beginning of a project and our duty is to get this understood rather quickly otherwise the project will develop in a silo and will lack the consensus required for success.

RT: One of the great advertisements for PLM would be customer successes, but these are restricted by confidentiality rules and the lack of agreed metrics so that the stories usually appear anecdotal to the outside world. The PLMIG has proposed a PLM Best Practice Reference Model to address this. Do you think that industry-wide metrics and best practice standards could help strengthen the message of how effective PLM can be?

DS: When a PLM project is well designed and well executed, the measured returns on business process efficiencies are huge. And very quickly, companies decide to keep those data very confidential given the multiple side effects their publication may provoke. The referential models help managing this problem as each vendor has the capacity to position their experience in multiple projects in a given industry and also cross-industry. It is a significant help to build steps and project credible ROI numbers. This is fully part of our PLM methodologies at Oracle.

RT: Four years before Oracle acquired Agile, Agile had taken over Eigner+Partner and there was a meeting of two very different cultures. Do you think that, in 2010, there are cultural or practical differences in the way that PLM is approached in Europe and the United States?

DS: It is obvious that the strategic nature of PLM is more developed in Europe. It is common in the US to see companies with multiple PLM solutions, which often correspond to new project launches by slices of 5 years. This is rare in Europe and I believe the difference is in the strong influence of the German industry where long term thinking prevails over short term decisions whenever an initiative touches the business processes of a company. This results into PLM projects which are more comprehensive, with a holistic approach to enterprise business process support and therefore deeper integration between PLM and ERP, SCM or CRM. It is also more common in Europe to consider adding the Master Data Management dimension in order to build a complete product referential which federates product data from development, operations, manufacturing and logistics.

RT: Oracle is active in many markets. Are there differences in the way PLM is perceived in Manufacturing, Electronics / High Tech, A&D, Pharma, CPG or Retail?

DS: The commonality is in the understanding that PLM is a key enabler to control growth and intellectual property. A decade ago, companies were enforcing the usage of a common ERP system after an acquisition. This is no longer true: a common PLM system is now the enabler to a successful acquisition and ERP systems may remain in place. Companies have understood that ERP only controls logistics while PLM controls innovation and most of the critical parameters of the future extended company. Applications remain very much industry-focused and in reality very little is shared between our PLM solution for Food & Beverage and our PLM solution for Industrial Manufacturing, for example. Take our PLM solution for Pharma: we designed it to be integrated with the Oracle clinical suite for drug testing and with other Laboratory applications. Infrastructure, middleware levels and a few generic modules are commonalized but many modules are different. This is the price to pay by the vendor to have a good usability, necessary to PLM acceptance inside a company and an absolute prerequisite to efficiency.

RT: Trade shows and vendor user groups generally involve the exchange of ideas between individuals. This is obviously valuable, but in the wider view, the overall take-up of PLM by companies around the industrial world is often held back by corporate indifference or lack of understanding. Could there be a useful form of corporate cooperation to generate impetus, and perhaps best practice, on an international level?

DS: Two situations break this indifference you are talking about: mergers between companies and creation of joint-ventures. From my personal involvement in several of these, I have seen icebergs transforming into volcanoes! Controlling new product development and protecting IP were the triggering factors and PLM appeared quickly as the strategic weapon to the merger or JV success. I believe that the proliferation of JVs in most industries, as we see right now booming in the Pharma space, will enforce similar sharing as we saw in the automotive industry 5 years ago, before the economic downturn which slowed down everything in this sector. Associations such as ProSTEP iVIP in Germany contribute efficiently for PLM, and Oracle is taking an active role in this dynamic.

RT: There is a new Product Structure Standard that sets out a natural logic for the evolution of data from PLM to ERP, but there is still a perception amongst 'PLM-ers' that PLM manages the product from the cradle to the grave, apart from its time in the Manufacturing Department. What do you think would improve the PLM-ERP picture?

DS: Some PLM vendors have a very dogmatic approach and aim to 'rule everything' from their environment. This is a very arrogant view, more and more rejected by industrial customers. Customers require PLM environments which are simple and flexible, which are capable to evolve as the company develops, reconfigures and adjusts. This requires supporting an industry-specific approach, with business-ready solutions, privileging configuration to customization, and total openness in APIs. When it comes to PLM/ERP integration, Oracle customers must be free to decide which system is the master for part or all of product structure and must be free to evolve over time. If you visit our customers, you will be surprised by the diversity of integration concepts and their good feedback on implementation and upgrade projects. These are the best proof points for our flexibility and openness. Oracle had a really good idea to retain the name Agile for its PLM portfolio! It delivers on it.

RT: Would you say the same when it comes to CAD and PLM integration ?

DS: Exactly the same! A PLM system is a backbone for all applications that are part of the product development cycle. And CAD applications are of course at the heart of this. PLM vendors who also sell CAD applications have a clear tendency to consider their PLM solution is a 'wrapper' around their own CAD and do not accept to support a multi-CAD strategy in a productive manner. We are back to openness and flexibility.

RT: You have presented at a German-speaking user event (the Deutsche ORACLE-Anwendergruppe) and are based in Paris. Would you say that PLM is presented satisfactorily in non-English-speaking countries? And do you think that the French market is particularly French-focused?

DS: I live in Paris but my real European PLM headquarter is in Karlsruhe, Germany. In terms of maturity for PLM, I can see a significant difference between North/Central Europe and South Europe. It is not a question of language, it is a question of maturity in industrial strategic planning. The specificity of the French market is directly linked to the very centralized nature of the French economy, combined with the well known 'French touch' of political interference! Each country has its own codes and you need to understand them to be successful. Our mosaic of European cultures is always difficult to understand and accept by our US colleagues. But that's why we have a robust European organization.

RT: You are perhaps unusual in having a mechanical and civil engineering degree with a career in PLM. Do you think that PLM will ever be applied effectively in the Architecture, Building and Construction industries? Would anything new need to be developed for this to happen?

DS: I indeed spent the first part of my career in designing offshore systems for the oil industry and my engineering experience has always been a strong asset for my career in PLM, where I expanded in the directions of business process transformation and IT architecture. About Architecture, Building and Construction, I agree that all attempts so far have been disappointing for customers and for vendors. Maturity is not there but I believe it will come through regulatory requirements first. This will raise the level of investment that is needed to implement efficient PLM solutions. Low-end solutions have never been successful in solving high-end problems!

RT: Thank you.

 

 

Roger Tempest is co-founder of the PLMIG. You can request more information or find out how to participate via standards@plmig.com
  


BPM Implementation Issues
by Scott Cleveland
 
 The 2 main reasons that companies implement business process management [BPM] strategies are to improve process throughput [productivity] and to remove unnecessary process steps [efficiency].

Companies that have pursued BPM strategies have discovered some hurdles.

A 2009 AIIM survey showed the following:

  • User resistance to change
  • Lack of understanding of what BPM is
  • Underestimated time to map and agree processes
  • Extending ownership across departmental boundaries
  • No single, identifiable process owner
  • Securing cooperation from line of business owners

My Thoughts....

I want to share these with you because they are very real hurdles. It is important to address them in your project plan.

Resistance to change is a problem for anything new. For the most part, people don't like change. You must come up with a strategy to manage change. Sell the project internally.

There are many definitions of BPM. Determine your objectives and lay out a plan of success. Somewhere in that plan will be a definition that works for your company.

Mapping a process is a process in itself. Working with a representative user group, map the process. Then speak with the people involved in the process to see if that is how it really works - and repeat.

Whenever projects cross departmental boundaries, make sure that all departments have a voice. They need input and ownership. This should help you uncover process owners and secure their cooperation.

In this uncertain economy, effective process management is a key ingredient to success that allows you to break out as a market leader.

Your Thoughts....

What steps has your company taken to be a market leader?

 

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


CL2M Case Study 7: BOL Railway Locomotive DfX
by David Potter
 
This case study is based on one of the 10 commercial applications developed during the EU PROMISE Project. It briefly describes how common PROMISE technologies were applied in order to create consolidated product knowledge that would support Design for X activities related to railway locomotives.
The traction chain of an electric locomotive was the subject for the evaluation of this Design for X (DfX) application. The traction chain is the central function that transforms electrical energy into wheel movement, transferring traction force to the rail, or transforms brake forces into electrical energy. The demonstrator concentrated on the electrical and mechanical elements of the traction chain.
There was already quite a substantial history of collection and analysis of product lifecycle data. However the use of this data had been within a project oriented framework. A product oriented framework with an appropriate analysis of this data and deliberate focus on issues related to the design aspects was required in order to provide an efficient means for generating useful knowledge and to help designers improve specific aspects of their (re)design activities.
This application differed from most of the other PROMISE applications in that it concentrated on the processing of large amounts of already existing data collected from the control subsystems of the locomotive series in question. It did not seek to implement Product Embedded Information Devices (PEIDs) or deploy middleware for data capture. Instead the PROMISE Messaging Interface (PMI) was used as a common interface to introduce filtered data from the already existing and differently formatted information repositories into the PROMISE PDKM (Product Data Knowledge Management) Server.
The transformation of the relevant field data into the required DfX knowledge is realised through various stages such as the validation of the data, the transformation of the data into information, the detection of a matter for concern, and the synthesis of the different relevant information to generate the required knowledge. 
The transformation of data into information and information into knowledge requires the use of various tools and methods as part of a DSS (see PROMISE Decision Support System). Knowledge was generated through analysis of field data mainly from maintenance records of locomotives that could be used for the improvement of the design of next generation. Thereby availability of locomotives can be improved thus reducing lifecycle costs and increasing customer satisfaction. In addition to the knowledge regarding RAM/LCC (reliability, availability, maintainability/lifecycle cost), the demonstrator aimed also to generate knowledge regarding safety and environment.
The main benefits of the DfX knowledge generation strategy were:
  • improved and more competitive product designs through the reuse of adequate proven designs and enhancement of weak aspects of the previous designs,
  • increased customer satisfaction due to improved fulfilment of customer requirements regarding, for example, reliability, availability and safety,
  • reduced design effort by allowing engineers to have direct access to discrete and meaningful DfX product knowledge in every design phase,
  • minimised design changes during product service life (respectively warranty period) due to improved component selection during initial design.
Registered users who are logged in to cl2m.com will be able to access the full public text of this PROMISE demonstrator case study by following this link: Case Study 7: BOL Railway Locomotive DfX. There is no charge for registration.
In the next issue of the 2PLM newsletter, I will present the eighth in this series of case studies, dealing with the application of PROMISE technologies to support middle-of-life structural monitoring for heavy earth-moving machinery.

David Potter is Chief Technical Officer, Promise Innovation International Oy, and former Chairman of the Project Steering Board of the EU PROMISE Project.


 

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PLM News

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Corporate

CENIT AG announced conclusion of an acquisition agreement with conunit GmbH. Details

Dassault Systemes announced the acquisition of Geensoft, a provider of embedded systems development solutions, for Euro 5.5M. Details

Financial

Gerber Scientific, Inc. reported revenue of $458 million for its fiscal year ended April 30, 2010. Details

IHS Inc. reported revenue for the second quarter ended May 31, 2010 totaled $266 million. Details

Oracle Corp. announced fiscal 2010 Q4 GAAP total revenues of $9.5 billion. Details

People

MSC.Software announced the appointment of Eric Favre as the Vice President Asia/Pacific. Details

Right Hemisphere announced the appointment of John Valentine to vice president of engineering. Details

Tech Soft 3D announced Phil Spreier as the new Translation Solutions Product Manager. Details

Implementations

Ansys announced that Tetra Pak has expanded its use of Ansys products. Details

Cadac Organice BV announced that the Koniambo Nickel Project in New Caledonia has implemented Cadac Organice. Details

Catalog Data Solutions announced that DimcoGray Corporation selected CDS's interactive online catalog. Details

Catalog Data Solutions announced that Industrial Gas Springs, Inc. has implemented its CAD download solution. Details

Dassault Systemes announced that SOPAL is using V6 PLM Express and 3DVIA Composer. Details

Dassault Systemes announced that R&DE (E) selected Abaqus FEA software from SIMULIA. Details



Dassault Systemes SolidWorks Corp. announced that Kinematic Automation uses SolidWorks. Details

Intergraph announced that Emirates Aluminum Co. Ltd. selected Intergraph SmartPlant Foundation. Details

NGC announced that SPANX has begun implementation of NGC's e-PLM. Details

QUMAS announced that EirGen Pharma has selected DocCompliance and ProcessCompliance. Details

Tacton Systems announced that Post en Dekker implemented a Tacton Configurator Solution at Stork Food & Dairy Systems B.V. Details


Developments

Aras announced the availability of enhanced vault replication capabilities for Aras Innovator. Details

Autodesk, Inc. unveiled a family of software suites for visual, factory and plant design. Details

BigMachines, Inc. announced the release of BigMachines 10.1. Details

Bunkspeed announced the release of Bunkspeed SHOT. Details

CADENAS announced the release of PARTsolutions version 9.01. Details

CD-adapco announced the release of STAR-CCM+ v5.04. Details

Dassault Systemes announced the launch of V6R2011. Details

DEM Solutions announced EDEM 2.3. Details

Docupoint announced availability of DrawingSearcher - Version 2009. Details

EMA announced CIP 4.0. Details

Fishbowl Solutions, Inc. released Baseline Promote. Details

Fishbowl Solutions, Inc. announced the release of linkSecurity. Details

Lattice Technology Inc. announced the release of Lattice3D Reporter Publisher. Details

LMS announced the LMS SCADAS Mobile 02. Details

ModuleWorks announced the latest release of its CAM components, version 2010.6. Details

OpenCFD announced the release of version 1.7.0 of OpenFOAM. Details

Oracle introduced Oracle's Agile Customer Needs Management, part of Oracle's Product Value Chain solution. Details

QUMAS announced the launch of its Enterprise Compliance Solution for Microsoft SharePoint 2010. Details

Rasterex announced the release of RxSpotlight R11. Details

Rasterex announced the release of RxAutoImage R11. Details

Selerant announced the launch of DevEXe. Details

Spatial Corp. announced Beta availability of RADF R3.0. Details

Zuken announced the latest version of E3.WireWorks. Details 

Relationships

Arena Solutions announced that it has signed eBOM AB as a reseller for Norway, Sweden, Denmark and Finland. Details

Cadac Organice APAC announced Fastman Consulting and Solutions as a new partner. Details

Cortona3D announced a partnership with CORENA. Details

eLogic Group LLC announced it joined the PTC ChannelAdvantage Partner Program. Details

IronCAD, LLC announced the signing of their latest reseller, CAD International. Details

ITI TranscenData announced it became a PlatinumPartner within PTC's PartnerAdvantage Program. Details

 Product                         Lifecycle                         Management: Paradigm for 21st Century Product                         Realisation

MasterControl Inc. announced that epista IT of Denmark has become a MasterControl Reseller Partner. Details

MSC.Software announced a partnership with Simufact. Details

Nemetschek North America announced a partnership with Mad Macs Technology Distributions Limited. Details

SAP AG and Open Text announced continued expansion of their strategic relationship. Details

solidThinking, Inc. announced it has partnered with Sumisho Computer Systems Corporation. Details

Technia and Invention Machine announced a strategic partnership agreement. Details

Zuken announced that CSK is the winner of the CADSTAR European distributor of the year award for 2009 - 2010. Details

ZWCAD announced it appointed Techiesoft Fz LLC as a ZWCAD Exclusive Partner in the UAE. Details


Other

Active Sensing, Inc. announced new system pricing for its PDXpert PLM 2010 Edition product lifecycle management software. Details

Ariba, Inc. announced it was named to the Supply & Demand Chain Executive Top 100. Details

Autodesk, Inc. named West Hills Construction, Inc., as the June Autodesk Inventor of the Month. Details

Auto-trol Technology announced that Configuration Management Process Improvement Center recognized Auto-trol Technology as a Preferred Vendor. Details

AVEVA Group plc announced that it is in collaboration with two Malaysian universities. Details

CYA Technologies announced that CYA SmartRecovery received "Designed for EMC Documentum" accreditation for the sixth consecutive year. Details

Delcam announced that the company added its 1,500th customer in China. Details

Endeca Technologies, Inc. announced availability of "Exploring the Next Generation of Information Availability Technologies". Details

Geomagic announced that Ping Fu, president and CEO, was honored as one of Fast Company magazine's 100 most creative people in business. Details

Gibbs and Associates announced it granted Purdue University's College of Technology sixty-five seats of its GibbsCAM software. Details

Hexagon Metrology, Inc. announced the official opening of HexagonStore.com. Details

i GET IT announced the availability of four new courses for Autodesk users. Details

Invention Machine announced an innovation initiative in EMEA. Details

LMS International announced use of the LMS Test.Lab High Definition Acoustic Camera and the LMS Test.Lab 3D Acoustic Camera. Details

Mentor Graphics Corp. announced that Mindtree has become a part of the Questa Vanguard Program. Details

The 19th PDT Europe was officially announced. The theme for PDT Europe 2010, which will take place in Reading, UK on November 16-17, 2010 is Standards based PLM for Global Innovation and Collaboration. Call-for-Abstract

 

 

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