“I have to chase and compile data before I can actually work.”
Do you keep receiving product and packaging specifications by email and have to manually capture them in your database? Is your database an Excel sheet saved in a cloud everyone can access and modify? Does every supplier send you information in different formats? You may have worked this way for a long time, but data is the new “El Dorado”. You can’t deal with it like you did 10 years ago, when it was already a strategical mistake.
You need reliable methods and tools to centralize and proof-check every information required for your new product development projects.
“Once information is captured, I can not reuse it for new projects.”
Were you asked to develop a range of products from one you created two years ago? Did your main supplier unexpectedly renew half of their catalog? Even after you finished developing a product, its data still lives. Because of a new legislation you may want to start formulating from a current product, have to make mass replacements in your raw material library, and update regulatory documents. Information continuity does not end with the marketing of the product. You need to be able to reuse the work you have done in the past, faultlessly operate wide scale changes in your databases and ensure data accuracy even after it has been approved.
“We have too many validation protocols and it slows us down.”
Are you sure you didn’t make any errors when compiling your finished product’s specifications? Did you forget anyone when sending them for validation? Successfully gathering information is only the first step. Whatever your job is – marketing, research and development, procurement, regulatory affairs, etc. – you inevitably alter this information. Modification, deletion, addition, update, you name it. Every time, there is a risk of corrupting the data, particularly during repetitive and laborious tasks. When you are done, you need to send it to your team- or external stakeholders- without having it distorted. You must have secured processes and communication channels as well as automated critical tasks to eradicate manipulation errors.
From specification management to information continuity
Ease and secure specification management thanks to a dedicated software
Lacom’s PLM provides a unique repository that dematerializes all new product development (NPD) related information: raw material and packaging characteristics, mandatory files, suppliers’ details, etc. You define every item using a form with multiple fields to be filled free hand or from pre-existing libraries: classification, nutrients, ingredients, physical-chemical criteria, etc.
All the specifications are systematically stored to build a healthy and logical database. It respects the data’s format, dependency relationships, criticality and places it in the NPD process. This renders the search and use of data for ulterior steps intuitive, efficient and secure.
Secure critical tasks
Lascom’s PLM comes with a comprehensive set of functional modules such as the formulation tool. It automatically calculates the product’s nutritional value table, ingredient statement, allergen list, applicable claims and so on. It then uses this to generate the product’s label in several languages and in perfect compliance to your marketing and regulatory requirements.
This considerably secures and speeds up time consuming steps such as formulation, prototype simulation, generating specifications or regulatory compliance approval. This leads to powerful direct advantages: a safer final product and a much shorter time-to-market.
The PLM stores all the information related to your products and packaging and keeps track of every modification. Thus, your R&D team can start to formulate from any finished product or prototype that already exists. Also, when modifying a raw material specification, you can assess all impacted products and update their specifications.
Talk clearly to internal teams and your suppliers
Companies have to orchestrate both their internal processes and their relationships with external stakeholders: suppliers, laboratories, creative agencies… Lascom’s PLM safely secures all these interactions.
First, every external stakeholder can access your repository with the supplier portal, which is a strictly controlled administration. They can capture various information such as raw material or packaging specifications, certificates, plant locations, company details and so on. Product specifications can also be imported via automatic uploads of Excel sheets.
Second, its workflow engine lets you model all your NPD processes: task sequences, critical steps, delays, validators… It also sends reminders and alerts to concerned users and creates project management reports.
Suppliers can provide the raw material and packaging specifications directly with the dedicated portal or via Excel templates. The Research & Development and Quality team can retrieve this information to formulate the product, simulate different prototypes, generate the batch sheets and the finished product’s specifications. They can easily send these documents to internal validators, production plants and the customer. This workflow ensures that all who are involved verify and approve that all required information and documents are accurate.
Also, every item (ingredient, raw material, packaging, composition and so on) can be commented on directly in the PLM, creating a unique area for discussions. It is also versioned after every modification of any data, guaranteeing everyone accesses up to date information.
Lascom PLM software’s benefits for specification management
Supplier portal for specification input
Automated calculations and generation
Workflow engine and specification process management
Seamless transition from product design to production thanks to ERP interfaces
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Access our guides and whitepapers for your industry :
- Fact checking: brand strategy is inseparable from product information
- How to Facilitate Food and Beverage Product Development in a Global Regulatory Environment
- Agri-food compliance: a global phenomenon. How can we adapt to it ? – White Paper