Communicating product data across an organization is complex. Let’s talk about how to make it easier.

Different departments gather product data from a variety of systems including Product Lifecycle Management (PLM) Systems, Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) Systems, Manufacturing Execution systems (MES), and Quality Management Systems (QMS) and more, how do we know our organizations are making the most out of all this information?

Just think about it for a second. Our systems speak different languages, AND our departments often aim for different goals. 

With an estimated 90% of the world’s data created in the last two years alone (Conner, n.d.), it’s no wonder that companies are having a hard time using it all.  The IDC estimates that just 0.5% of the data companies produce is ever used. It’s time to change that.

Here are 9 Ways Your Business Will Benefit From Connecting Your Data systems.

1. Increased Usability 

Data experts believe that if Fortune 1,000 companies increased the amount of data they used by just 10%, they could realize over $65 million in additional net income (Marr, 2015). Not only are these numbers huge, they also help make my case about the critical importance of data usability.

The truth is – any one specialized system is often too complex for many non-specialized roles to navigate, find, and transfer the right information. This often leaves separate departments accountable for storing and sharing uncontrolled, out of date versions of product data. It’s not because they don’t WANT to use the right information. It’s because system complexity and interdepartmental gates make it hard to consistently get the right information. 

So how do we make product data more usable?

A) Consolidating product data from disparate sources into one single system.
B) Give users a way to access the system using simplified role-specific dashboards.

2. Better Data Access

The most important reason your product data shouldn’t (internally anyway) be kept secret is because product data is your company’s most valuable asset.

Not everyone who needs access to specific product information hosted in your PLM system is from your engineering department, so don’t force them to go through the same vigorous Product Lifecycle system training. Don’t make them navigate an engineer’s world one click at a time.

In order to effectively use data, our departments must have ready access to it. We must make rich product information easy to accessible for a broad set of roles.

By creating an organized system that connects all of our product data, your organization will make information easily accessible to users beyond those who have created it.

Just think of the possibilities that come from connecting multiple systems and delivering information to all departments through a single window.

3. Complete Data

Imagine an entire enterprise with access to real data, at the right time, when it’s needed.

By connecting your product lifecycle management systems with your other enterprise systems, every stakeholder within your organization can impact the value flow of product data through your organization. It also equips team members to consistently drive critical decisions with the latest, most accurate information.

4. Better Insights

Better access to data = Better insights. 

Your business teams can and should demand a lot of your PLM processes and solution.

This is one of the reasons why your organization should consider integration technologies and custom front-end solutions – Such as PLM applications. 

A data-driven enterprise with insights into how current products and processes can be optimized can drastically improve productivity. Doing this requires teams to have access to up-to-date, accurate product data.

5. Better Decisions

Ready access to information is especially important to any company developing products.  

Users without access to the system of record resort to error-prone workarounds that can result in inaccuracies, quality problems, and waste.

Decisions made from out- of- date inaccurate data threaten product quality and delay time to market.

Providing everyone in your organization with broad visibility into the system of record will drive better, more accurate decisions. This will ultimately improve quality, reduce waste, scrap, rework, and help you meet your time to market goals.

The analytical possibilities that come with connecting your data will help users across your organization make accurate product decisions throughout the entire development process.

6. Better Products

Who doesn’t want to create better products faster?

Providing your organization with universal data access will allow your company to drastically accelerate product development.

How so?

By connecting disparate systems, you will have access to real-time data allowing you to make better product decisions.

Because your decisions and actions are now driven by up-to-date information, you will achieve a higher product quality.

7. Increased Productivity

Why waste time manually reading, entering and analyzing data? It could be automatically collected, filtered, and combined.

By collecting your product data in one system and providing a simplified role-based interface, any user within your organization can access contextual, up-to-date, real-time product information anytime they need. 

I guarantee your productivity will grow when your organization is able to plan earlier with manufacturing, order materials sooner with purchasing all while your engineering team is spending less time pulling reports.

8. Increased collaboration

Using a system that provides role-based data access to stakeholders throughout your organization provides every role with an ability to quickly understand the status of a part number and how the parts fit together in a design.

This will not only help mobilize and inform the work of teams throughout the organization, but it will also help maximize the success of your product development.

Giving your team the ability to extend and connect your PLM data into the rest of your enterprise will rapidly increase the overall effectiveness of your organization.

9.  Real Results

The ultimate benefit your organization will achieve by connecting your data systems stems from your ability to acquire real results. 

What does that mean?

Positive results have a tendency to snowball into more and more success. Results give your organization the confidence it needs to quickly deliver value. Providing access to the right information empowers a team, department, company to reach their true potential.

We want to help your company thrive. Our EAC Productivity Apps give your organization a way to connect disparate enterprise systems and easily deliver role-based dashboards to increase user confidence and productivity.

 

This article talks about the barriers to simulation driven design faced everyday by engineers throughout the product development process – and how your organization can overcome them. We speak to product development companies and teams every day. Most strive to achieve:

  • Deeper understanding of product performance
  • Faster ramp-up, shorter development cycles and quicker time to market
  • Reduced design-cycle times
  • Fewer prototypes and first-time quality at reasonable cost
  • Reduced warranty liability and exposure

Odds are you’re already familiar with the traditional product development process. Taking ideas from concept, to design, simulation, prototyping all the way to manufacturing your products. For many years, industry has tried to consistently use simulation as a part of that process; for good reason. It typically improves quality, on-time delivery, and customer satisfaction.

Unfortunately, when simulation is used as a part of the product development process, it’s almost always used as the final validation step after a design is practically complete. But the fact is… that’s not exactly the vision of “simulation driven design” that the industry has been striving to achieve for years.  

So why is that? Let’s talk about the common barriers holding many companies back from achieving simulation driven design.

Common barriers of Simulation driven design

1.     Engineers feel they need to consult a simulation expert

Often, engineers feel like they don’t have the expertise to run simulations while they design – they feel like they need to consult an expert that may not be directly accessible. This creates design challenges early in your product development process.

2.     Engineers feel they need a simplified copy of the actual design model

Often, a simulation expert’s initial task is to figure out how to simplify a copy of the design model so that the simulation will run in a reasonable time and still provide an accurate actionable result. Many engineers don’t feel comfortable making the call regarding what part of their design is critical for a successful simulation.

3.     The iterative design process can be complicated

We can all agree that the design process is an iterative one. We can also agree that designing products is complicated. If it wasn’t, everyone would do it.

Certainly, a design engineer would want to use simulation as he/she iterates a design, but this would require running a simulation that could take hours – on multiple uniquely simplified copies over and over again. It’s just not efficient. It’s too disruptive to the design process. Because of this, design engineers generally don’t do it.

The solution: Simulate Earlier in the Design Process

What product development teams really need is a simulation tool that is fast, responsive, and so simple to use that it can literally keep up with design engineers during every step of the way.

No copies. No waiting. Just immediate simulation results throughout the design process.

By using simulation capabilities that are ‘pervasive’ across a concept and detailed throughout design stages – your organization will break down the barriers between design and simulation. Requirements and Quality.

That is the key.

The best part? There are solutions that give every design engineer what they need to truly achieve simulation driven design.

They provide design engineers with the ability to instantly understand how product design changes can impact a products performance. These solutions are called ANSYS Discovery Live and Creo Simulation Live.

The solution that makes simulation driven design easy

PTC and ANSYS partnered together to achieve an overarching goal to remove simulation barriers for product development teams. They accomplished this by deeply integrating ANSYS’s breakthrough of Discovery technology directly into Creo.

This partnership provides the best and broadest portfolio of engineering simulation software – putting the best in class design and simulation capabilities into a single product available to the fingertips of every design engineer – it’s called Creo Simulation Live.

How Creo Simulation Live Works

Creo Simulation Live uses a unique technology approach to deliver simulation results interactively as a product is being designed.

This solution compliments existing simulation offerings that tend to focus more on the analyses that require higher levels of fidelity or are used as a final validation step.

Creo Simulation Live works differently because it does not require the user or designer to be an expert in the field of analysis. They simply need to know basic constraint techniques and away they go.

Using this simulation technology analysis setup and simulation is fast and easy.

In fact, engineers are able to quickly learn the tool navigating a familiar command ribbon UI, context sensitive menus, RMB command access, simplified workflows and engineering terminology. Because, again, Creo Simulation Live puts real-time simulation right in your Creo design environment.

Creo Simulation Live even uses intuitive menus to define and place loads, and constraints. It allows simulations to be created and visualized in minutes and updated on-the-fly. It gives design engineers instantaneous feedback on design decisions.

How much can Simulation Driven Design Save You?

Solving design challenges with instantaneous simulation sounds great, but let’s talk about the return on investment (ROI) it could provide your organization.

Engineers across a diverse range of applications can take advantage of the many features that Creo Simulation Live offers to reduce both time and expense in the design process. These include:

  • Optimizing the product design and identifying issues early in the design process
  • Reducing the need for multiple heavy analysis iterations or prototypes
  • Mitigating the risk of product failure, warranty and liability claims

Investing in Creo Simulation Live gives your engineers a tool that enables them to realize their full design potential. 

Just like any business investment, engineers must be able to prove that the results obtained by using Creo Simulation Live are greater than the resources invested, and it’s worth the investment. On a basic level the return on investment (ROI) is the calculation of an investment’s cost versus its benefit.

To calculate an approximate ROI on Creo Simulation you don’t need to be an accountant, I will keep it simple! Try using the following formula: ROI = ((Gain of Investment)- (Cost of Investment)) / (Cost of Investment)

The Gain of Investment is the amount of money your organization will gain from using Creo Simulation Live.

Remember, money your organization does not have to spend, such as prototype costs, should also be included in your Gain of Investment number. E.g. the value of reducing the number of physical prototypes, the expense saved by reducing the number of hours spent on non-final design simulations, etc.

Your organization might also include the improved quality resulting in reduced cost of product warranty and repairs. In addition, you may also consider the value of the time saved in the product development process when using Creo Simulation Live. 

Creo Simulation Live can significantly reduce the number of design and prototype cycles, allowing more robust products to be marketed earlier. The Cost of Investment is the amount of money your organization will spend on Creo Simulation Live. The most obvious cost is the price of the Creo Simulation Live software.  To obtain specific costs for your organization feel free to reach out to us.

Your organization may also want to include the cost of training or implementation for the software. We can help you figure out the bottom-line investment in things like software and training. When calculating ROI make sure to document two things that will have an impact on your calculations, the timeframe, and the precision of your numbers.

Pick a timeframe for your calculation that is relevant to your organization (in the case that you are unsure as to what this might mean for your organization, we would be happy to assist). One year is a good timeframe to start, allowing the results to be annualized.

Your ROI calculation should be an estimate, and not down to the last dollar. Many of your numbers will be approximations.  Document your assumptions as you compile the numbers. That way you can voice your justification if asked later on.

Let’s look at an example taken from the Aberdeen Group – Industry Averages for Simulation Driven Design (2008, 2016).

Current Customer Numbers:

  • Annual Product Revenue: $100M
  • Percentage of Product Revenue from New Products: 25% ($25M)
  • Cost of Poor Quality (% of revenue): 8% ($8M)
  • Annual Cost of Prototypes (% of new product revenue): 2% ($500,000)
  • Number of Design Engineers: 100

Sample Creo Simulation Live Benefits:

  • Cost of Poor Quality: 10% savings – ($800,000)
  • Annual Cost of Prototypes: Decreased by 39% – ($195,000)

Creo Simulation Live Cost:

  • 100 Engineers x (~$2,400/engineer) = $240,000

ROI Calculation:

  • ROI = (($800,000+$195,000) – $240,000) / $240,000
  • ROI= 3.1

This demonstrates approximately a 300% return on investment!

Given this kind of return on investment, you now have a solid argument as to why purchasing Creo Simulation Live is the best option to overcome your design challenges! 

Smart connected operations are transforming companies and changing the way we do business.

Imagine if your company was able to take advantage of data that revealed existing and future problems, and allowed your team to make drastic improvements by completing predictive maintenance and service.

Business decisions can no longer be reactive. You need to be proactive — Here’s how smart connected operations could ‘revolutionize’ the way you do business.

Smart connected operations help businesses make faster decisions

What helps a company make fast, highly informed decisions? Data.

Smart connected operations allow information to be collected from multiple sources, assets, facilities, and even vendors. This connectivity allows data to be collected and analyzed to inform decision-making and enable teams to make faster decisions.

Smart connected operations help businesses increase operational performance

Smart connected operations can help your business monitor and track asset viability, ultimately allowing your company to reduce downtime, improve design, and improve utilization.

Data from connected assets, in collaboration with other enterprise systems, can provide not previously possible visibility and automation across organizations.

For example, product data flowing through a CRM system can also be sent to billing or into a supply chain management system— helping to eliminate error-prone manual steps and providing new sales opportunities for things such as consumable replenishment or warranty renewals. (PTC)

Smart connected operations help businesses decrease lead time and increase product quality

The insight smart connected operations provide will help you improve and perfect your production processes.

By integrating smart technologies and processes, your organization can lower development costs, time-to-market, and improve your overall product quality.

Smart connected operations help businesses improve manufacturing responsiveness

A sensorized manufacturing floor let’s you monitor performance, in real-time, and provide valuable information to field service technicians and manufacturing floor managers.

Service responsiveness will be accelerated with remote monitoring, access, and complete management of your disparate systems through enabling smart connected operations within manufacturing.

Smart connected operations help businesses improve supply chain coordination

The new capabilities of smart, connected operations will alter every activity in the supply chain.

Your operational efficiency will increase exponentially if your organization reaps the benefits of integrating with other data, such as inventory locations, traffic patterns, commodity prices, and historical data repositories.

Smart connected operations help businesses reduce manufacturing IT costs

Smart connected operations use digital interfaces that make it easier and less expensive to track the production process. These interfaces are less costly to apply and easier to modify than physical system controls. By integrating smart connected operations, your company will increase operation mobility, which in turn can reduce your manufacturing IT costs.

The sensors in smart connected operations also identify a need for service before the machine or product fails. These data analytics will drive previously unattainable efficiency improvements by providing predictive maintenance analytics and higher productivity levels.

With the help of predictive analytics, smart connected operations help organizations anticipate problems and take early action.

For example, your industrial machines would be remotely monitored and adjusted by end users during and beyond operation hours. They could even begin to manage themselves leveraging machine learning and predictive analytic engines.

The bottom line is that smart connected operations have begun to change business models, organizational structure, and manufacturing system architecture.

The development and the deployment of smart connected operations will be incremental, but the opportunity is here today.

What are you waiting for? It’s time to start capturing the time, dollars, production, and quality that smart connected operations can provide.