ERP and PLM – Complementary Solutions
Businesses need to efficiently control their processes from idea generation through product launch to end of life. ERP and PLM, two major systems, are essential to develop and launch innovative and profitable products.
Usually, companies are more familiar with an Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) solution than a Product Lifecycle Management (PLM); however, both are complementary. ERP enables businesses to manage and automate their daily activities. It facilitates the flow of information across the different departments using a single source of information. An ERP focuses on a product lifecycle, once a product has been approved and launched. It ensures the supply chain is optimized, and products are manufactured in a timely manner, while ensuring accurate cost control.
On the other hand, a Product Lifecycle Management (PLM) software is used to support and improve product development, from idea generation to end of life. A PLM streamlines the innovation and business processes.
Nowadays, it is crucial to implement information systems, as they are key drivers for faster innovation. It is challenging to navigate through all available software; however, ERP and PLM go closely hand in hand. They lead to faster processes and better product management. These two systems ensure data and information consistency from product development to end of life.
A successful combination of ERP and PLM will create a powerful source of data, information, processes and workflows to easily create and deliver products, from idea generation, through design to manufacturing and distribution.
ERP and PLM – Integration
The needs, implementation and integration of an ERP and PLM vary from one business to another, consequently, their roles depend on the specific innovation and execution processes of each company. However, it is undeniable that both, ERP and PLM, are essential to drive innovation and ease product management.
Therefore, businesses should be mainly concerned with the integration of one system to another. Indeed, these two solutions focus on products, so it is crucial to have a “single version of the truth”. This will reduce re-keying errors, and ensure document and product versioning (i.e.: version control). A seamless integration offers additional advantages, such as:
– quick flow of information and data through the different phases of a product lifecycle
– flow of accurate value-added information and data between ERP and PLM
– each business unit has access to the most up-to-date and accurate product information
– improved and easy collaboration management
– suppliers and partners are part of your product lifecycle and their accountability are enforced
– ensure product compliance in any country
– single version of the truth through a common repository
– easy version control
With this in mind, Lascom has developed partnerships with ERP providers to create standard connectors, facilitating the integration between ERP and PLM. This integration enables businesses to be more agile and reactive in all their activities (e.g.: deliveries, quality, costs, traceability, innovation, etc.). It eases the manufacturing processes and creates a more cohesive environment.