PLM Integration With (Wait For It…) Social Media Technology

Jun 23, 2011 12:00:00 AM


Product lifecycle management (PLM) and Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) integration removes the barriers of time and distance and provides us with global visibility into manufacturing projects.

Social media removes the barriers of time and distance and provides us with global visibility into the lives of our nearest and dearest.

The question, then, is not ‘will PLM integrate with social media?’ Rather, ‘when’ – or (for those who like to skip ahead) – ‘how long ago?’

It’s very rare that a major change and a seeming inevitability collide without some degree of push-back.  And when it comes to social media PLM integration, this push-back can be summed up in one beautifully succinct line:

‘We will not design a plane on Facebook.’ From a Boeing Participant at COFES 2009, cited in the presentation Social Media in PLM by Siemens.

Is this a fair assessment of where PLM social media integration is headed?  Is the world’s most popular social media channel – literally – set to become the destination where manufacturing happens?

In agreeing with the push-back – that a plane will not be designed on Facebook – Siemens presentation goes on to discuss the concept of social computing, and how these concepts could apply to product development.  For instance:

  • A ‘Tweet’ could be equatable to an instant communication of a design challenge

  • A ‘comment’ could be equatable to shared, public feedback on design issues or concepts

  • A ‘news feed’ could be equatable to progress issues or statuses

Each bullet point above syncs succinctly with what we discuss as being the primary benefits of PLM / ERP integration, specifically:

  • Real time communication, where team members can communicate project details instantly regardless of distance

  • Global project visibility, where team members can see all project details in one central location

  • Faster time to market, thanks – in part – to more efficient means of communication and management of project details

Social media PLM integration, in the end, only sounds as though it is the next step.  In reality, manufacturers that have taken advantage of PLM / ERP integration have been experiencing the benefits of social for quite some time – and to reiterate – this does not mean designing a plane on Facebook.

In a sense, we aren’t looking to social for a new way of managing manufacturing projects – but to see what the next step in this evolution may be.

What are your thoughts on social media PLM integration?  Do you feel that social technologies are already blending with manufacturing processes – and if so – what do you hope to see next?  I encourage you to share your feedback via a comment below.

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About Author
Luciano Cunha

Luciano Cunha

Chief Executive Officer (CEO) For Luciano, being responsible for To-Increase’s global sales and marketing means unleashing the company’s insight, innovation, and creativity to tell our story and help customers achieve their goals. On the road much of the time, he travels the world to meet with customers, understand their challenges and ambitions, and find the most effective ways to help them advance. Luciano develops and mentors our marketing and sales team, and creates strategies to help the To-Increase worldwide partner channel thrive and grow.
Making Customer Needs the Main Business Driver Luciano and his team have daily conversations with the To-Increase research and development organization to bring customers’ requirements and concerns into the road maps and design of our solutions. Luciano brings his insight to the marketing group to make sure the company’s communications resonate with customers and speak directly to their experience.
“I’m awed by customers’ innovative spirit in taking business management technology past its limits and by their generosity in letting us participate and empower them. I hope to transform our organization to become even more customer-centric than we are today. That means making more resources available to spend productive time with both our customers and partners, so we can ensure that we place into customer businesses effective solutions that fit the evolutionary stage of their operation and the way their people and processes work.”
Empowering a Global Channel
Because To-Increase only sells through partners, readying the channel to be successful in helping customers is a business-critical effort. Luciano aims to meet partners where their interests are. Partners who consider the relationship with To-Increase strategic can rely on our industry specialists to work with them as they plan their growth and serve customers. If partners prefer a less collaborative relationship, they still receive the rich To-Increase expertise and resources to ensure they win the business, perform a successful deployment, and retain a satisfied customer. In working with partners and their customers, Luciano brings to bear his experience of many years of creating successful, customer-focused business development and marketing strategies in many of the world’s countries and regions.
Enabling Customer Success in Challenging Business Environments
Looking into the near future, Luciano expects that customers will continue to expect To-Increase to help them make business sense of unfolding trends and technologies. For example, the internet of things (IoT) will thoroughly revolutionize manufacturing, engineering, and supply chains. Big data will be meaningful and valuable when decision-makers can use technology solutions to transform it into actionable business intelligence that supports key roles and business processes. Mobility will help companies become digital enterprises and move business processes forward from any location, at any time. Team To-Increase harnesses innovation to help customers translate the promise of these technologies into business results.
Before his current role, Luciano for several years was one of To-Increase’s global industry directors, responsible for our industry solutions. His experience also spans more than 17 years in IT and manufacturing management roles. These positions took him into various areas at IBM Brazil, serving as product manager for several software development companies, and included working in senior management at a manufacturing organization in the U.S.
Luciano is married with two young children. Away from work, he enjoys participating in a soccer class together with his son and daughter as well as taking relaxing walks in natural environments with his family.

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