In today’s world, it’s not uncommon for companies to be rich in data but poor in insights. Despite having access to a wealth of information, organizations struggle to properly analyze performance and drive transformational improvements. This is where ThingWorx Digital Performance Management (DPM) steps in to bridge the gap.


This week in your factory, you’ve applied maximum effort, pouring countless hours into perfecting your product. As the work week ends, a feeling of slight disappointment remains.


Could you have accomplished more? Where did it go awry? You may not be able to find the answers on your own, leaving your factory inefficient and operating below its full potential.


If this is you, look no further. With the capabilities of Thingworx Digital Performance Management, you will unleash an untapped potential of data and boost your manufacturing processes.


What is Digital Performance Management?

ThingWorx Digital Performance Management (DPM) is a cutting-edge solution designed to help organizations identify, prioritize, and improve production issues.


By capturing lost production hours and their causes, DPM indicates where to focus for the most critical impact. Also, it optimizes the finite time available, allowing organizations to reclaim lost hours and increase effective time by 20% or more. Thus, directly impacting the bottom line.


How Does DPM Work?

Consider a manufacturing facility that can produce one unit per hour. In a week with 88 hours worked, the facility manages to manufacture only 44 units. Let’s say 12 hours are lost through planned downtime and 14 hours are lost due to changeovers.


That leaves about 18 hours unaccounted for. Where did those come from? With ThingWorx DPM, you can quickly identify issues, and why they happened, and then take appropriate actions to fix them.


Moreover, DPM calculates and analyzes discrepancies, providing valuable insights to improve productivity. DPM is a comprehensive toolset that propels organizations towards peak performance by tracking performance, conducting in-depth analysis, planning, and validating improvements.


The Production Dashboard

One feature included with DPM is the Production Dashboard. The visual dashboard is a crucial tool for supervising shift performance and gathering vital data to inform reporting and analysis. It is designed for supervisors and line managers to track productivity across various production lines.


Some key features of the Production Dashboard include:

  • Provides insights into shift progress at the production block level

  • Allows for automated and manual data entry, including reason codes to capture all losses

  • And offers a simplified interface to minimize disruption


Bottleneck Analysis

The Bottleneck Analysis tool is designed to automatically detect and monitor the most significant bottlenecks in your factory, providing valuable analysis and insights into OEE and OLE.


One of the challenges that customers face is a lack of visibility into bottlenecks, which leads to a disconnect between continuous improvement efforts and their impact on the business. However, bottlenecks are often dynamic and complex.


To address these challenges, DPM offers key capabilities to help identify and resolve:

  • Automatically identifying and tracking bottlenecks.

  • Systematic identification of the top constraints, which can significantly increase factory efficiency by 5-20%.

  • Management of the dynamic nature of competing bottlenecks.


Overall, DPM works relentlessly, making up for lost time by tracing the root cause of issues and providing precise remedies to ensure smooth and efficient functionality. Consider DPM an invaluable employee, working tirelessly around the clock without additional overtime costs!


Accelerate Problem Solving with DPM

DPM’s capabilities extend beyond surface-level analysis. By combining Pareto analysis and time loss analytics, DPM users can uncover and address a significant percentage of production problems.


Additionally, with the further integration of AI and machine learning, DPM streamlines the identification of patterns in data, resulting in faster problem-solving and decision-making.


For instance, a DPM user noticed quality losses between 3 p.m. and 4 p.m. Thanks to DPM’s automated analysis, the manufacturing team quickly determined that the issue was caused by a glare from the sunset, making the inspection camera unreliable.


All in all, DPM helped accelerate the problem-solving process saving valuable time and resources.


Reap the Benefits

Digital Performance Management is as remarkable as it sounds. DPM holds the secret to your production improvements and is ready to share them with you. Discover the plethora of benefits that are tied to DPM:


  • Standardized Measurement: DPM provides a consistent and standardized approach to measure losses, ensuring accurate evaluation of bottlenecks, and their impact on performance.


  • Efficient Root Cause Analysis: Leveraging AI technology, DPM identifies the root causes of bottlenecks and facilitates their permanent resolution, eliminating recurring issues.


  • Automated Problem Identification: DPM’s powerful AI algorithms automate the process of surfacing common issues, exponentially reducing the time spent on problem-solving.


  • Real-time Insights: What once took months to identify critical insights now becomes easily accessible through DPM’s intuitive interface, providing teams with immediate access to actionable insights.


Get Started with DPM Today!

In conclusion, if you want to revolutionize your performance management and take your organization to new heights, it’s time to embrace Digital Performance Management.


Remember, in today’s fast-paced world, those who leverage technology to gain insights and make data-driven decisions are the ones who thrive.


Are you ready to unlock the true potential of your organization with Digital Performance Management? Talk with an expert now to take your first steps toward success.

PTC’s LiveWorx 2023 was a huge success. EAC is proud to have been a Premier Sponsor for the leading technology trade show in Boston, MA that ran from May 15-18. LiveWorx brought over 10,000 attendees from all over the world to the Boston Exhibition Center (BCEC) to learn and share insights about today’s digital transformation for the manufacturing industry. 

The exhibition hall was buzzing with energy as EAC’s booth was filled with great discussions and technical demos revolving around navigating the digital thread. As the #1 PTC Reseller and Solution Provider in North America, it was great to be back with PTC leaders and innovators under one roof while connecting with our customers and network, sharing how we help manufacturers in various industries.

Event Highlights

With groundbreaking intelligence from PTC at the Global Partner Summit, to country star Dierks Bentley (wearing an EAC company ball cap), to hosting PTC’s CEO Jim Heppelmann at our EAC x Fishbowl Solutions Happy Hour, plus exciting guest speakers such as celebrity mountaineer Alex Honnold- LiveWorx 2023 was one for the (digital) books.

Navigating The Digital Thread with EAC

EAC Product Development Solutions is at the forefront of providing and implementing digital thread solutions for companies seeking to transform how they design, manufacture, connect to, and service their products. EAC’s advanced industry knowledge helps resolve pain points companies face from multiple facets throughout the product development lifecycle. Our experts at LiveWorx had seven successful IgniteTalx and Breakout Sessions that covered a wide range of topics, including:

  • Creo Illustrate for AR Developers
  • Minimum Windchill Implementation to Achieve Significant ROI
  • Augmented Reality and Expert Capture
  • Model-Based Definition
  • Assessing Your Business Practices to Find Optimization Opportunities
  • Rapid Prototyping Made Simple with Creo Additive Manufacturing
  • Simulation-Driven Design with Creo Simulation Live

Special Thanks

Thank you to everyone who attended our presentations and visited our booth at LiveWorx. We enjoyed meeting with you and learning about your manufacturing challenges, wins, and visions for the near future. We look forward to continuing the conversation and helping you improve your operations throughout the product development lifecycle. Thank you to PTC and our customers who joined us for LiveWorx 2023.

If you missed LiveWorx 2023, you can still get access to our presentation slides or book a technical demo by sending us a note here. Our experts can answer any questions you may have. Contact us today to learn more.

See you in Boston next year!

LiveWorx 2023 Photo Recap:

If you’re familiar with the world of Lean, then you’ve probably heard the expression “it’s a journey.” This expression has become a little trivial or trite. It’s become a little hollowed out, sort of like the term empowerment or win-win. I have a colleague who hates the expression win-win. He hates it because it is always used as a mask when he finds himself in a win-lose situation. But Lean really is a journey and I want to articulate the elements of that journey for you today.

First, you need to define your starting point, like a journey. Then you define a destination or where you want to go. Finally you have a rate of progress towards your destination. So, if you’re traveling from New York to California, you have your starting point in NY and your destination in CA. You have your rate of progress that includes intermediate states. You might stop in PA and visit some friends. You might only have enough money to get to IN. If that’s the case then you’ll need to stop and make some money for a little while before you pack up and continue west as far as you can go. California represents the ideal state and you have some intermediary states along the way.

In the world of Lean you define the current state, you consider your ideal state, you understand your limits, you identify targeted improvement states — way stations along the way, you go there and reach a steady state, then you prepare the next move on your continuous journey when the time is right. And that’s how Lean is represented as a journey.

Contact us to learn more about how Systems Thinking and the application of our Product Development Operating System can help your organization become more efficient, productive, innovative, and competitive.

Follow Bill at

If you’ve seen the television ad for Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups where the peanut butter and chocolate trucks collide to produce a novel tasty treat, then you’ll understand the basis for this blog entry.
In our case the peanut butter truck is a dialogue that has become a standard part of our engagements with consulting clients.  After seminars or during product development system discussions, we are often asked who are the major product development thought leaders who we most admire and who serve as strong influences on our own thinking. The chocolate truck counterpart is the parlor game in which people name the three people that they would like to invite to a dinner party. A group of my friends recently enjoyed this game, and yes, there was drinking involved, and yes, it is in my own career’s best interest not to go down the path of their interests!

But when I apply the question to my professional interest, and allow myself to expand the dinner group to four, I was able to come up with my own personal Fab Four of Product Development.  In no particular order here they are. They are all respected authors so you should be able to find lots of follow up material if your interest is piqued.

First invitation gets sent to Durward Sobek. Durward is a professor at Montana State University and a humble, focused thought leader in the world of Lean Product Development. Durward was the lead on-the-ground-in-Japan researcher for the first foreign team allowed behind the curtain that cloaked understanding of Toyota’s closely guarded product development system. Durward is co-author of the Shingo Prizing winning book, Understanding A3 Thinking, which gives a full and clear understanding of how Deming’s teaching have been applied and practiced with great success in Japan. On first meeting Durward and then reading his book, there was immediate recognition of how the tool in the book’s title was a potential game changer for Western product developers.

Second invitation goes to John Shook. Like Durward, Shook is a Shingo Prize winning author, who also focuses on the A3. Durward, I know personally, as well as through his various writings; John Shook I know just through his writings. Shook’s book, Managing to Learn, doubles down on the belief that product development is about the generation and application of new knowledge, innovation, but he also importantly charts out how the A3 process is used as a cornerstone of the ongoing professional development of engineers at Toyota. Shook’s writing is deeply insightful and resonates with authenticity, being based on his own experience as an early Western manager within the ranks of Toyota both in Japan and subsequently within the US. Toyota does a lot of things well; Shook helps us understand their important investment in people.

The third invitation goes to Don Reinertsen. I’ve only had the pleasure of meeting Don Reinertsen once, but it was after having followed his writings since the late 1990’s. When I met Don, I was in the middle of reading his latest book, The Principles of Product Development Flow. He told me it is a difficult read. It is. It is also worth the effort. Reinertsen uses communication theory and practice as a framework for considering product development, in that both systems are characterized by high variability and both have as a necessary goal, the flow of information. Reinertsen’s perspective on product development, his multi-decade promotion of Queuing Theory which challenges self-defeating behaviors in product development, and his emphasis on the economic consequences of our current “best” practices are all valuable contributions to efforts of improving how we operate.

The final invitation goes to Mike Kennedy; last, but in fact perhaps most significant and influential. I attended a seminar Mike gave in the early 2000s, and it was an epiphany. It began my conversion from corporate executive to a product development consultant focused on Lean Product Development. Mike has been the major voice articulating both his own and the late Allen Ward’s understanding of ‘a better way of doing product development’. EAC has an ongoing partnership with Mike. He is a champion of the LAMDA process (the PDCA process as practiced at Toyota, interpreted and recast by Allen Ward to suit Westerners), and the developer of Learning First Product Development. He is also the first author to elaborate the theoretical framework for Lean Product Development and then follow it up with a guide to its pragmatic implementation in Western environments. This latter contribution is captured in his book, Ready, Set, Dominate. Mike now travels the world as an evangelist, or perhaps better, as the Johnny Appleseed of Lean Product Development.

So that’s my dinner party.  For me it would be a slice of heaven.  I should probably start a bucket list and get this on line 1.


In the world of Lean, the timing of the complex dance of syncopated work is managed through cadence.

The most visible and familiar example of cadence in Lean systems is the concept of takt time that controls the production line. The work of each station along a production line or in a work cell is executed within the same time-duration bounding-box. The concept of cadence enables load leveling, the act of shifting work from one production workstation to a neighbor so that the time of execution at all workstations can be balanced to fit into the shortest, most efficient takt time. The most efficient takt time produces the most efficient total cycle time and serves the high-level goals of Lean production systems.

One of the five fundamental principles of Lean is Flow, the uninterrupted movement of value across boundaries. Cadence is the heartbeat that determines the flux of value within the system. The analogy of a heartbeat is doubly appropriate.

Like a heartbeat, the cadence of production has a systolic stage that forces flow, as work in progress moves from one station to then next. And the cadence has a diastolic stage of low flow pressure, during the execution of the tasks at each station.

The second valuable aspect of the analogy of the heartbeat is its organic nature. With increasing focus on knowledge work and management efforts to humanize the workplace in the pursuit of greater productivity, mechanical models have been increasingly displaced by organic, systemic models. And so the heart organ replaces the ticking clock or the metronome as the timing event.

In Lean Product Development also, cadence serves to both coordinate and drive the timing of events. But unlike in the manufacture and assembly of product, the cycle times of product development are much longer and the model of the beat-per-second human heart is useful, but less insightful. An example of the use of cadence in Lean Product Development is the use of Integrating Events in Set Based Concurrent Design. These events are used to put innovation ‘on a clock’ but in a way that is not counterproductive to the creative work.

The period of this development cadence extends over several weeks. For what kind of creature does this describe their heartbeat? Obviously, none, and so some other organic cadence function likely serves as a better model. The menstrual cycle leaps to mind — appropriate by period of cadence, by its somewhat variable regularity, and by its key role in the creative (innovation?) process. Of interest to me is the time variance between the two strokes of the integration event cycle, if fact of any cadenced cycle. It gets me thinking.

In a heartbeat, the two halves of the ‘lub-dub’ cycle are approximately equal in duration. In a factory setting, the division of takt time between the task of adding value and the task of movement to the next station are ideally not approximately equal in time, but rather the value-add time is maximized and the non-value-add-but-necessary time is minimized.

Allow me to detour for a quick, justification side bar here. A common caution to Lean practitioners is to avoid blindly applying the tools of Lean, but rather to use them with an understanding of the underlying principles that guide their application, the ‘why’ of the tools. Like the standards that we have developed to make our work more efficient and more effective, the principles of Lean themselves must be analyzed and sometimes challenged in the cause of continuous improvement. And so I embark on a perhaps Quixotic dive into thinking about flow and cadence.

My thinking calls into focus another fundamental principle of Lean, the pursuit of Perfection. Principle based Lean practitioners recognize Perfection, the idealized future state, as being more of a compass heading than a destination. And so the question is begged, what is Perfect Flow? Is it the reduction to zero of non-value-add but perhaps-necessary time? And if that is so, does that mean no movement (so no flow) or that value-add can be done during movement? We’ll rip this apart in our next blog. And we invite you to send your thoughts on this and all future blogs in to us to help guide our thinking and our learning.

And so as we speak of the next blog and of the value of cadence, we are announcing that we will now put a cadence to our postings, to make it easier and more predictable for those who wish to follow. We will put up some new thoughts on the first and third Tuesdays of the month, with the occasional ‘organic’ variation to our regularity. And on occasion, we may throw up an intermediary blog as we get something off our mind and into words. And, again, we are interested in your feedback, so please share your thoughts with us.