Modern supply chains for manufacturers require detailed management and supervision every step of the way to achieve long term success. Enterprise software such as Product Lifecycle Management (PLM) systems and Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) systems assist organizations in this endeavor. There is a clear difference between PLM and ERP integration softwares.
This has to do with what type of employees mostly use each software. Agile PLM users are normally engineers and designers whose input is required in the planning phase. ERP users are manufacturing and operations employees, who also require input from finance, HR, and supply chain departments in order to effectively carry out the production phase.
The planning and production phase both hold equal importance in the smooth functioning and growth of an organization. The software that assist in these phases (PLM and ERP) are crucial in a modern set up. Working in isolation, both PLM and ERP require a lot of man power to operate and collaboration between the planning and production teams is difficult. Therefore, there exists a window of opportunity to integrate ERP and PLM in your organization, and reap the various business benefits that result from the integration.
What should be the order of implementation?
Integrating PLM and ERP consolidates processes and helps teams to collaborate and create synergy in the organization. The proper plan of implementation for integrating the two software should be followed to minimize downtime and lay out workflows in the correct order.
In order to integrate an organization’s PLM and ERP, it is better to implement both these systems together rather than one after the other. This is necessary because while integrating, the organization needs to have a detailed understanding of how the data is shared and stored at various points of the process. Whether this data is in the PLM part or being used in ERP, the entire map of data must be formulated before to implement a seamless integration between the two software.
What are the business benefits of integrating PLM with ERP?
These two software that help maintain majority of an organization’s functions can offer even more once integrated. Here are some benefits of integrating PLM with ERP:
When the data flows freely between teams working on PLM and ERP, they are more likely to collaborate, share ideas, and be productive. The efforts made by the design teams and manufacturing teams are more cohesive, as ideas are easier to communicate.
The integrated infrastructure supports file types which frequent in both planning as well as manufacturing processes. The document history and versions are also maintained for all users to view, that allows editors to share how each document is altered and updated with other users.
Collective work via integration of ERP and PLM allows teams to think outside the box and innovate in order to bring better products to market.
One major benefit of integrating PLM and ERP is not having to enter the same data twice. This helps most in the case of producing Bill of Materials (BOMs). BOMs contain a heap of data, including financial, supply chain, and engineering information. When PLM and ERP are integrated, this data can be consolidated within a single BOM when all relevant teams contribute to this information.
Documents like BOMs become easier to create and maintain, while redundant data entering is nullified. Employees save time and effort on repeatedly entering data to share within the organization. Data needs to be entered once and is stored in a central repository that all employees can access, as a result of ERP and PLM integration
While reproducing and sharing data, unforced errors are common. With integration, the need to reproduce data is eliminated and therefore the accuracy of data is improved significantly. Operations become more efficient across the production process as errors are minimized and employees do not need to spend time in proofing and revising those errors.
More accurate work also instills confidence in employees and helps in customer interactions and fulfilling customer requirements. Employees can rely on the fact that communication will be smooth and free of errors due to ERP and PLM integration, which will result in satisfied customers.
By integrating systems within the organization, unique advantages can be reaped. Specifically in the case of ERP and PLM, the two systems are complimentary in their functions and therefore, bring efficiency, synergy, and enhanced accuracy to your organization.
To perform secure, fast and easily deployable integrations for any enterprise system, Xavor offers an innovative tool xEngine. This tool understands the needs of an organization and delivers customized integrations with a wide range of adapters. To learn more about integrations with xEngine, visit here.