Quantifying the Financial Value of PLM, Succeeding with PLM Implementation, A Goldmine, Search Tools for R&D and Product Development


2PLM Newsletter

John Stark Associates                                                                                                                                          February 10, 2014 - Vol16 #5

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Quantifying the Financial Value of PLM
by Roger Tempest
The PLM Financial Framework will have far-reaching effects. With a neutral metrics system that can be used by users and vendors, most of the uncertainties that are holding back PLM will be removed. PLM projects will be justified based on financial gains that can be measured as the implementation proceeds.

The acceptance that PLM metrics are there to be calculated, using a standard toolset and methodology, will make adoption much easier. The PLM Team will be able to take sufficient time to calculate the justification correctly, knowing that the results will be accurate and useful. Vendors will be able to propose solutions that clearly act for the benefit of the business, knowing that these benefits can now be quantified by the customer.

The fact that the methodology is formalised and agreed will lead to a new form of 'best practice' which maximises the scope, permeation and traction of the implementation. With more and more companies establishing valid working metrics, the concept of an international PLM Benefits Reference Model becomes a real possibility.

A key part of the Financial Framework deliverables is the toolset that enables the PLM Team to make this happen. The PLMIG workshops in Frankfurt and Vaasa at the end of last year developed the mobilisation process and document set that the Team can use to enact what may be a transformational change for the company.

Two forthcoming events will open a window to the insights that have been learned during the initiative. There will be a Focus Group session at the Product Innovation Congress in Berlin, 25-26 February; and a more detailed interactive session at the PTC Live Executive Exchange in Boston, MA on 16-17 June.

The detailed results from Frankfurt and Vaasa are now being processed and will be published as part of the PLMIG membership material for 2014.


Roger Tempest is co-founder of the PLMIG. Membership of the PLMIG is available via membership@plmig.com.

Succeeding with PLM Implementation
by Scott Cleveland
Successful PLM implementations have many common features. Learning about these features, some of which I address below, should help your company to succeed with PLM.

Find a Champion
A champion will act as the 'Pied Piper' for the project. They will explain and push the benefits to the users and to management. They will get everyone on the same page.

A champion doesn't need to be a high-level executive; they just need to be well-respected within the company.

Manage the Scope
You may have a great vision for the big picture, but you should start small with the project. Begin with a project phase that has some visibility, but make sure that you can complete it in less than 6 months. The longer a project takes, the more enthusiasm it loses. It's important that people see some success fast - then they will want 'some of that'.

Document your Processes
When analyzing the processes involved in the scope of your project, don't start by trying to model how the process should work. First, just model how it works today.

Process improvement is another project entirely. The search for a better process can take a very long time. Perfection isn't your first objective [it's also unobtainable]. Implement your current process and make improvements as you go. The only exception to that is if you can see an activity taking place that adds no value - then I would remove that one.

Field a Project Team
Involve a team that represents all the stakeholders. If people have some input, they will feel some ownership. This will help the project to be successful.

One person can kill a PLM project. If you suspect there's a potential project killer out there, get them on the team. Get them involved - this should reduce any negativity.

Measure your Performance
Measurements are important when analyzing your processes. In order to improve a process, you need to know how it is working presently. Then you can make improvements and measure again to see if you improved it. And then repeat the process.

My thoughts ....
The above isn't a complete list of features of successful PLM implementations. However, the successful PLM implementations that I've seen all had these features in common.

Your thoughts ....
By the way, companies that have successfully implemented PLM solutions have seen real benefits - you could too. Please feel free to contact me to learn more about features and benefits of successful PLM implementation.


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

A Goldmine
From a Customer Review of Product Lifecycle Management: 21st Century Paradigm for Product Realisation.

This is a goldmine of high-value material with rich veins of knowledge and experience. It will be highly valued by readers in the Manufacturing sector handling the complexity of developing, supporting and managing products in the global economy.

Nuggets like the PLM paradigm lie on the surface. More highgrade material lies under the surface.

Space shuttles, tires, SUV's, drug products, elevators. With collaboratively-developed, globally-used products the need for Product Lifecycle Management is omnipresent. Unless PLM is implemented, expect even more problem products. But implementation will take more than management presentations of cool and colorful Powerpoint slides. PLM is a new way of thinking, flying in the face of century-old thinking, and isn't so easy to take aboard.

This is a profound book building the foundations of a new paradigm for product development, realization, use, management. Reading it is an enrichening experience.


Search Tools for R&D and Product Development
by Dick Bourke
My continuing review of the many searching methods and available software tools prompts me to refine how I describe Search & Discovery Solutions (SDS). I previously thought of SDS as only semantic-based and operating within the enterprise Intranet. It now covers all forms of search, including geometric, relational database methods and Internet.

Added dimensions of SDS are coming from the general search community, in addition to those with engineering/product development roots.

To put into perspective the emerging vendor/software alternatives, I'll first identify a frame of reference, which I call the spectrum of Research & Development (R&D) through to New Product Development (NPD). On one extreme is the R of R&D - pure research; at the other is NPD - on-going product development, as well as enhancements to an existing product. In between are some blendings, such as applied research. The extremes are easy to label; the in-between gets a bit fuzzier.

In the R&D area of the spectrum, representative software tools from the universal search community include:

  • Attivio - Active Intelligence Engine
  • BA Insight - Agile Information Integration
  • Coveo - Advanced Enterprise Search
  • Sinequa - Real-Time Big Data Search & Analytics Platform

In general, these products have similar characteristics: proprietary search engines, advanced semantic processing, document processing orientation, Internet capabilities and reference customers. Research firms such as pharmaceutical companies seem to characterize the ideal use case. At this end of the spectrum, patent searching on the Internet is a critical need for them. Typically, the ability to access CAD file content is not a requirement.

On the other end of the R&D - NPD spectrum, consider NPD processes. Semantic-based tools are in play. Content within drawings represent relevant product data. And for MCAD environments, geometric search could be in play.

In this area, I recognized some software tools in my previous articles. Here are two more:
  • NorthRidge - Discover Enterprise
  • Perception Software - Encompass

Call these tool sets "point solutions." They address the needs of design departments. They also help product development processes in downstream departments such as manufacturing engineering and purchasing. The Apache/Solr (open source) search engine is commonly used with enhancements by the vendor or third party firms. And these tool sets usually include software connectors to extract information from places other than engineering records such as ERP systems or text documents outside of engineering. Some of these point solutions are embedded in PLM systems.

So far in my columns, I've listed some "representative" software tools. Caution: Not including any particular tool set could mean that they are still "under review," such as IBM's Rational Engineering Lifecycle Manager, Infor's Enterprise Search and more. Of course, I may have missed others, so flag me and I will check them out.

Will search software tool vendors be pushed out of their comfort zones into other areas of the spectrum? Or will they do so as part of their go-to-market strategy? I would say that's very likely. Also, an enterprise's need for complete spectrum coverage and the availability of many vendor/software alternatives supports the idea that two or more tools may be essential to solidify a comprehensive search strategy, so co-existence - without integration - is a possibility. Other ways could be by alliances, acquisitions, or internal development.

Permission Statement
Search Tools for R&D and Product Development is reprinted with permission from Engineering.com/designsoftware


For more information, contact Dick Bourke at dickb@bourkeconsulting.com

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Autodesk, Inc. announced it has completed the acquisition of Delcam. Details

Dassault Systemes announced an agreement to acquire Accelrys, Inc. for approximately $750 million. Details

Mentor Graphics Corp. announced it purchased the AUTOSAR assets from Mecel AB. Details

OpenText Corp. announced that it has completed its acquisition of GXS Group, Inc. Details



Dassault Systemes reported IFRS unaudited financial results for the year ended December 31, 2013. FY 2013 total revenue was 2,066.1 millions of Euros. Details

Geometric Ltd. announced its Q3 financial results for FY 2013-2014. Consolidated revenue was INR 2,752.80 Mn. Details

Open Text Corp. announced its financial results for the second quarter ended December 31, 2013. Total revenue was $363.5 million. Details

PTC reported results for its first fiscal quarter ended December 28, 2013. Non-GAAP revenue was $325 million. Details

Sopheon plc announced an update on trading for the year ended 31 December 2013. Revenues for the year ended 31 December 2013 are expected to be around £13.2 million. Details

3D Systems announced preliminary full year 2013 results, with full year revenue to be in the range of $513 million to $514 million. Details



Lectra announced the appointment of Edouard Macquin to the Executive Committee. Details 


aPriori announced that it has been selected by Whirlpool Corporation. Whirlpool will use aPriori to further automate its product cost estimating processes, drive global consistency in costing practices and provide a central cost management database for use by cross functional product development teams. Details

Aras announced that CAE selected the Aras PLM Solution Suite for PLM. Details

AVEVA announced Sembawang Shipyard Pte. Ltd. has migrated to AVEVA Marine for its engineering, design and production projects. Details  

Centric Software, Inc. announced that Cache Cache China has selected Centric Software for its product lifecycle management (PLM) solution. Details

Centric Software, Inc. announced that MUSTANG has selected Centric to provide its product lifecycle management (PLM) software. Details

Gerber Technology announced that LIFT will install a GERBERcutter. Details

Lectra announced that ELLASSAY has chosen Lectra Fashion PLM. Details 


Anark Corp. announced the release of Anark Core 4.2 and MBEWorks for SolidWorks 2014. Details

Aras announced the latest release of Aras Enterprise PLM for SolidWorks Enterprise PDM. Details

Cadig announced AutoParameter for AutoCAD. Details

Cimatron Limited announced the launch of the ECO Manager, a feature in CimatronE 11. Details

Dassault Systemes announced Release 2014x of its 3DEXPERIENCE. Details

Datakit announced CrossManager 2014.1. Details

Delcam announced the 2014 R2 version of FeatureCAM. Details

ESI Group announced the latest release of Virtual Performance Solution. Details

Gerber Technology announced AccuMark 9.0. Details

IronCAD, LLC announced IronCAD 2014 Service Patch #1. Details

KISTERS announced 3DVIEWSTATION support for mobile users with the need for powerful 3D CAD viewers. Details

Lantek announced the latest version of Lantek Workshop Capture. Details

Lattice Technology, Inc. announced XVL Studio version 12.1. Details

MachineWorks Ltd announced the release of Polygonica, Version 1.1. Details

PDF3D announced ParaView Plus. Details

ZWCAD Design announced the Extra-Plus Tool-Kit. Details 


Aras announced that xLM Solutions has joined the Aras Partner Program. Details

C3D Labs (ASCON Group) announced that GeoS Center has licensed its C3D Solver geometric constraint manager. Details  

 Product                         Lifecycle                         Management: Paradigm for 21st Century Product                         Realisation

CONTACT Software announced that CONTACT Software and Siemens Austria are the industry partners in a research project aimed at speeding up the development of bogies for railroad vehicles. The project is sponsored by the Austrian Federal government as part of the COMET K2 program. Details

InspectionXpert Corp. announced a licensing, marketing and distribution agreement with Dassault Systemes SolidWorks Corporation. Details

Matereality announced that the SolidWorks Materials Web Portal connects the SolidWorks Simulation user to the Matereality Global Data Center. Details 


ANSYS Inc. announced that students at San Jose State University use ANSYS Inc.'s structural analysis, fluid dynamics and electronics simulation solutions. Details

Arena Solutions announced fiscal year 2013 performance, including a 77 percent leap in new customer subscriptions year-over-year. Details

CAD Schroer announced that it is participating in a joint project as part of the German "Automotive & Manufacturing" development initiative. Details

Cideon announced that a new version of CIDEON V6 xPDM-SAP Integration supports 3DExperience Platform 2014 from Dassault Systemes. Details

Cimatron Limited announced that CimatronE version 12 will support the Additive Manufacturing File (AMF) format. Details

Cimatron Limited announced that the Samara State Aerospace University uses CimatronE and GibbsCAM. Details

Delcam announced that it has over 1,000 videos on its Advanced Manufacturing Solutions channel. Details

ENGINEERING PLM Solutions srl announced use of RuleDesigner to serve the needs of service management. Details

EOS announced an environmental lifecycle comparison of two key production technologies, rapid investment casting and Direct Metal Laser Sintering. Details

Hexagon Metrology announced that it will cohost a HxGN LIVE on Location Workshop with the National Institute for Aviation Research (NIAR). Details

InspectionXpert Corp. announced results for 2013. Details

Missler Software announced that in 2013 it achieved its highest ever turnover in the history of the company. Details

ModuleWorks announced that revenue increased by over 25% in 2013. Details

ProSTEP iViP announced that the ProSTEP iViP Symposium 2014 will take place on 13 and 14 May 2014 at the Berlin Congress Center in Berlin, Germany. Details



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