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Series of columns: Learning from advanced PLM use cases - PLM Strategy for improvement of business capability and Digital Transformation (DX)

The manufacturing industry is now facing a difficult phase, including drastic changes in the supply chain due to the spread of COVID-19 pandemic and soaring energy and material prices due to unexpected conflicts such as Ukraine issue.

In order to survive in such a drastic change that is difficult to predict, it is important for the manufacturing industry to enhance "dynamic capabilities" to detect changes and respond them quickly and flexibly. In addition, it is now an important theme to have a bird's-eye view and visualize the entire supply chain, strengthen resilience and strengthen the supply chain so that necessary measures can be taken against various risks.

In this new series of column, we will explain about the benefits of PLM utilization through the advanced use case in several industries which support these challenges.

PLM use case vol1:PLM connects design and manufacturing to realize a manufacturing system that is resistant to change

The importance of PLM that links design and manufacturing

Like the figure below, the “Engineering chain” is a vertical flow of business functions from planning and sales inquiries to production preparation and manufacturing etc. centered on product development and design and the “Supply chain” is a horizontal flow of business functions from procurement to manufacturing, logistics and sales that crosses the engineering chain at manufacturing.
“PLM” is a platform that comprehensively manages the product information and uses the digital technology in promoting reforms such as front-loading and high-mix low-volume production in line with this vertical engineering chain.

The technical information gathered by this PLM will be connected first along the engineering chain and then it will be linked with SCM and CRM to connect smoothly with supply chain. We believe that this initiative is a strategy to strengthen the entire manufacturing.

PLM connects the engineering chain as shown in this figure. It rectifies the flow of digital data based on the BOM and connects the data such as requirements, specifications, BOM, BOP with each other.
It also strengthens the engineering chain by connecting the operations, people and data so that created digital data can be connected with other IT systems.

Here, we would like to introduce a use case of our PLM product “Obbligato” for an industrial machinery manufacturer. The customer in this use case creates the structure used in overhauling work which is a maintenance operation in addition to the structure of the product such as engineering BOM, advanced purchase order BOM and manufacturing BOM on PLM “Obbligato”.

In this way, Obbligato connects the data used in design, manufacturing and overhaul operations with each other and by connecting such data to other business application systems such as “IFS Cloud”, digital data is transmitted and utilized internally and externally across the company. Furthermore, “Collaboration Platform” which is one of the modules of "Obbligato”, is also used to distribute the documents to the external suppliers.