Monday, March 19, 2012

How Does PLM Support Innovation?

Do you ever wish your products were more innovative? Have you ever looked at your product design process and thought that it was not very efficient? Have you ever wished they would shoot the new iPad full of holes? (you can see that here). Innovation is required to produce better products and delight your customers. PLM is the key to your journey down the road to enhanced innovation.

Innovation is an important topic; most people will agree that it is the key to America's future. Just ask any of the candidates currently stumping for your vote in November. A recent Time Magazine article was titled: "The Future of Innovation: Can America Keep Pace?" That's a very good question, and one that PLM is here to answer. In fact, without the use of PLM, it will be very hard for America to keep pace with the rest of the world.

PLM supports the three pillars of innovation: People, processes and technology. Without support for all three, there will be little chance of innovation, and limited ability to produce really cool, new products that cause customers to say: "Woweeee"!

Most people only think of innovation in terms of cool products, but innovation can take on many forms: product, process, markets, service offerings, customer interactions, and so on. There are many ways to provide innovation to a new market or customer. Anything that establishes, maintains, or enhances your market position, or provides a product or process differentiation, or improves customer satisfaction/retention, or excites people, partners, and customers is innovation.

One of the great strengths of PLM is it manages your intellectual assets. When these assets are managed properly with PLM, people are free to use technology to come up with very cool new products. PLM allows workers to focus on multiple iterations of products in a shorter time early in the design process. This leads to higher quality, innovative products that get to market faster. Without PLM, people are often at the mercy of technology, and innovation is the last item on their task list.

So, as you make the journey towards more innovative products, processes, and services, take a look at PLM. This is where your journey will start, and where it will end, as you manage your virtual and delivered assets. It might take an investment of time and money, but in the end it will be well worth your efforts.

What do you think? Are you trying to be more innovative in the coming year?



  1. Innovation is very "speculative" term. Here is my take on this - PLM, Innovation and getting things done.


  2. Jim and Oleg - we all have opinions and wrote about PLM and Innovation.

    My (long) opinion:

    and challenger:

    but Jim I believe you did a great job to express this in one page.

    Challenge remains (like everywhere in the world to have a common agreed opinion) - what is PLM and where PLM contributes to innovation. Where is the single version of the truth :)

    best regards


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  4. Jos,

    Thanks for your comments.

    I am very excited right now! There are a number of new technologies that may have a significant impact on PLM; It has not been this way for quite a few years. I am looking forward to enhanced innovation from PLM to drive product development.

    I always welcome your insights.


  5. jim, can you give me a flow chart or somthing of what ever you ahe said..i think it would be great for the people to understand of what you are saying in that manner. my email is

  6. Hi,

    Thanks for your comment. I am not sure I have a flow chart, but I will send you a couple of slides that support my blog.