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6 steps for a complete PLM (product lifecycle management) implementation

Published: 12/4/2019 7:45:05 AM

Like any other organization, your business is dependent on people, processes, and having the right tools to be successful. Each time that a new tool is implemented, it directly impacts the way people work and how the business is run. Following a step-by-step process and getting all of the appropriate stakeholders on board is key to ensuring your new tool can be integrated seamlessly. The same goes for implementing product lifecycle (PLM).
In this article, we will recommend six crucial steps to follow for manufacturers looking to implement a PLM software system into their organization.

What is product lifecycle management?

Product lifecycle management (PLM) is defined as the people, processes, and tools that are used to help manage a product and the product record from conception through the design phase, and on through development and production. A PLM system can help a business meet important goals, such ss achieving faster time to market, and lowering costs for scrap and reworking processes.
Many businesses already manage their product information using basic tools like excel spreadsheets. These activities could include things like controlling bills of materials, tracking engineering change order, product data management, and so on. Using a specialized system, however, can help streamline these processes and better manage company needs.

6 steps for successful PLM implementation

When implementing a PLM strategy, we recommend following these steps for a smoother transition:
  1. Define your goals and objectives for your PLM strategy. Clearly define what your operational goals and objectives are for seeking a product lifecycle management solution.
  1. Review your current processes. Reviewing your current processes helps you if and/or how they will be integrated into a PLM system. Think about who will be affected by the change and how they will be affected, in the planning, buy-in and implementation stages.
  1. Examine your data. Review your files and determine what data needs to be moved and what data can remain where it is.  Make sure any data being moved is as accurate as possible.
  1. Get buy-in from the appropriate stakeholders. Get the executive team and other internal team members who will use the system to get on board with your objectives and plan. This will help them to understand the value of the change and motivate them to contribute during the process.
  1. Develop a project plan. Work from a project plan and assign a project lead  to ensure all deadlines and milestones are met.
  1. Train your staff on the new processes early on. Making training materials available to users early on in the process helps to maximize efficiency and maintain momentum.
Streamline your product development processes by following the steps above. Successful implementation of a PLM system will ensure both you and your organization are prepared for growth.

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