The Periodic Table of PLM

Lionel Grealou CAx PLM 3 minutes

Product Life-cycle Management (PLM) is an operating model and a platform covering across many business needs, dimensions, functional, integration, technical and non-technical layers. These ‘elements‘ represent the foundations of product development and manufacturing engineering; they can be assembled in various levels of maturity and configurations based on an organization’s context and aspirations – similar to a periodic table of elements: this is the ‘periodic table of PLM‘ which regroups 19 elements or building blocks, including:

  1. Bill of Material (BoM) Management: from early / concept, Engineering-BoM, Prototype-BoM, Manufacturing-BoM, Service-BoM, etc.
  2. Product Configuration Management: from product variants, feature filtering, 150% to 100% BoM views, product structure WIP data management, product component management, etc.
  3. Document Management: from technical document, electronic work instructions, technical publications to non-technical document life-cycle, storage, knowledge sharing, including integrations with other functions like requirements, BoM, CAD data, etc.
  4. Change Management: from engineering change request, change order, production build deviation, issue management, tooling and fixture change management, and many other change types, across the life-cycle of various business objects.
  5. Requirements Management and Systems Engineering: from product attributes and feature list are linked and managed in an integrated manner, to complex interdisciplinary integration across the extended life-cycle of systems, sub-systems and items.
  6. Portfolio-Program-Project Management (PPPM): from high level program / project plans, to milestones, resources management, product risks and issues integration, forecasting and advanced planning, budgeting, etc.
  7. Geometric Authoring and Multi-CAD, including MCAD and ECAD: from 3D / 2D data creation, to advanced parametrisation, knowledge-based engineering, multi-CAD interactions and integrations, mechanical, electrical data, etc.
  8. Visualization and Virtual Experience management: from low-end light data driven visualization, to high-end visualization for virtual design and boardroom reviews, sales and marketing, advance manufacturing and service simulation, etc.
  9. Supply chain Collaboration and Extended Enterprise Communication: from product development and manufacturing engineering data exchange, real time collaboration and data sharing, social media integration, virtual team collaboration, etc.
  10. Business Analytics, Dash-boarding and Reporting: from big data gathering and processing, live dashboards to static and dynamic reports, to business intelligence and enterprise data integration, from shop floor to top floor.
  11. Compliance Management: from legislation requirement and quality validation, traceability, consistency, accessibility, visibility, to quality assurance, etc.
  12. Material Life-cycle Management: from material property alignement, to supplier ractionalization and consolidation, end-to-end product validation, from weight management to complex mechanical, thermal, electrical simulations.
  13. Weight Management: from new material introduction, performance attribute requirements, to cost management, simulation, etc.
  14. Cost Management: from component, supplier cost, material cost, make or buy strategies, to product cost models, margins, sales forecast, tooling cost, ERP integration for procurement, supply chain management, boardroom reviews, etc.
  15. Digital Manufacturing / Bill of Process (BoP) Management: from simulation of manufacturing process, virtual factory simulation, 3D visualization, to manufacturing component, tooling and fixtures integration, analytics and various collaboration tools, etc.
  16. CAE / Simulation Life-cycle Management: from Finite Element Analysis (FEA), to Computational Fluid Dynamics (CFD), Multi-body dynamics (MBD), and optimization, property management, simulation result management, traceability and compliance, etc.
  17. Application Life-cycle Management: from electrical, software and hardware integration and application management, embedded systems simulation, etc.
  18. Service Life-cycle Management: from servie-BoM to Maintenance, repair and operations (MRO), operations optimization, SLA-KPI management, traceability, cost optimization, etc.
  19. Product-Focused Task Assignment, Workflow Management Data Security: from user driven roles, projects, access control, process integration, to workflow configuration and customization, including ERP and cross-platform integration processes, etc.

Am I missing any ‘elements‘ from the periodic table of PLM? Surely, the scope of PLM is getting wider into the ERP and MES worlds, bringing new dimensions and perspectives to the equation…

What are your thoughts?

This post was originally published on LinkedIn on 20 October 2015.

About the Author

Lionel Grealou


Lionel Grealou, a.k.a. Lio, helps original equipment manufacturers transform, develop, and implement their digital transformation strategies—driving organizational change, data continuity and process improvement, managing the lifecycle of things across enterprise platforms, from PDM to PLM, ERP, MES, PIM, CRM, or BIM. Beyond consulting roles, Lio held leadership positions across industries, with both established OEMs and start-ups, covering the extended innovation lifecycle scope, from research and development, to engineering, discrete and process manufacturing, procurement, finance, supply chain, operations, program management, quality, compliance, marketing, etc.

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