Siemens PLM Software: Accentuating the Value of PLM to Design, produce, and Support new Products

CIOReview Team | Monday, 20 February 2017, 08:55 IST

Today’s consumers demand a lot from the products they use every day. Take a car, for instance. Even a small car today has to provide safety, comfort and convenience features like ABS, power steering, climate control and infotainment systems that were hitherto the exclusive domain of luxury sedans; and all of these has to be accomplished without compromising on fuel economy. To fulfill these demands of customers, automotive companies have geared up and are looking for an efficient backbone that can help them smoothen product design, development and manufacturing processes, speed up product launch and improve cycle times. Riddled with delayed product launches, design rework and manufacturing bottlenecks, these companies are increasingly relying on technology for improving efficiencies and accelerating product development. Driven by the demands of faster product development and process improvement, Siemens PLM Software is helping manufacturing industries to develop flawless products and expedite product development by simulating the behavior and performance of components, products and processes, thereby predicting manufacturing output as well as how the product will thrive in the real world. 

“With our PLM software solutions, organizations can improve decision-making and reduce the complexities of business processes and product manufacturing”, says Suman Bose, Managing Director, Siemens PLM Software India. 

As per a report published by Frost &Sullivan, the Indian PLM market is expected to reach $400 million by 2017 with a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 15 percent. Siemens PLM Software is the leading provider of PLM software solutions globally and in India. Last year, Frost & Sullivan recognized Siemens PLM Software as “Company of the Year for PLM in India”. For Siemens PLM Software, India is more than just a market, as indicated by its product development center in Pune, which is one of its largest centers in the world working on cutting edge technologies. “Our product development center in Pune is just an expression how important India is to us”, says Suman. 

Siemens PLM Software has been aggressively pursuing its Manufacturing Excellence initiative in India since 2011 and is aligned with the Prime Minister’s “Make In India” campaign. The company’s long term roadmap, immediate focus areas and PLM software solutions offered have resonated with the Indian market and have given impetus to transform India into a manufacturing hub. In many ways, Siemens PLM Software has set the stage to enable manufacturers achieve new levels of productivity and quality by offering a breadth of PLM Solutions across any product’s lifecycle. By optimizing client’s process, right from planning and development through manufacturing, production, support, and Service, Siemens PLM Software is leading the way.

Improving Quality and Increasing Design Productivity
Delving deep into industry best practices and open technology, Siemens has developed a software suite that addresses key issues facing businesses today- accelerating time-to-market, delivering the right products to market at the right time, extending product life to maximize revenues while increasing productivity. While exemplifying the importance of PLM, Suman says, “When a customer demands a fuel efficient yet comfortable and fast car, the manufacturer may face decision making dilemmas while trying to solve the conflicting customer requirements. Therefore, during product development we need to optimize the requirements by collaboration among multi-functional teams and evaluate subsystems for fuel economy, noise reduction and comfort in a singular decision block. That is where simulation comes into play. By integrating lifecycle collaboration to the design and simulation tools, manufacturers can simulate, transform product design, reduce costs, improve quality and increase design productivity”. Inclined towards optimizing product lifecycle processes through simulation, PLM today stands tall in helping manufacturers discover and resolve late-stage changes easier, thus making quick fixes a less costly affair.

During product development and design, lot of data and therefore, information is being generated from variety of sources and operations. Each stage of product development involves interaction among entities, management and people from different departments and the information generated from these interactions is not only necessary for developing products but also used for improving efficiency, driving business decisions and maintaining market competitiveness. “Such repositories may contain vast amounts of data which, when mined properly, can lead to key insights related to intellectual property, risk factors and resource availability”, adds Suman. Furthermore, the magnitude of data and complexity of processes further complicates data sharing, thus making it difficult for manufacturers to ensure data congruency and security at the same time. However, PLM persistently acts as a panacea in enabling information exchange between design partners, suppliers, joint venture partners and customers worldwide and making the right data available with the right person anywhere across the enterprise without compromising data security and congruency.

"It is never a software restriction; it is a restriction that customers put in their business environments"

Today, manufacturers do not just build a product; they are focused on amalgamating the power of multiple disciplines to make huge strides in product development. “Manufacturers today create logical models comprising of mechanical, electrical, electronics and software functions, and any other discipline of physics interacting in a product and combine them for a product definition with the purpose of evaluating it digitally, improving and then defining the first working model, first time right”, adds Suman. While embracing agile, scrum methodologies and multiphysics, PLM brings in continuous and newer improvements during the lifecycle of a product by reducing teething problems for the manufacturer.

As product complexity increases, manufacturing companies invest in automation, analytics and collaboration tools. With its PLM solution offering, Siemens PLM Software helps translate the power of physical digital integration capabilities to help its manufacturing clients better organize, develop and manage products and services, from ideation to end-of-life. “The next big breakthrough will be in bringing together the virtual world of product development and the physical world of manufacturing. That is where a lot of value is locked and major productivity gains are expected ,” says Suman. Many OEMs are confronting innovation and end-to-end lifecycle management challenges and they believe digitalization thread from design to manufacturing to service only can help them achieve long-term benefits. 

Change in Business Processes will Drive Tomorrow’s Competition
Customer demands, changing business processes and uncertainty are few of the watchwords for PLM vendors today as they face tough competitive markets today. However, Siemens PLM Software is well equipped to cope with these challenges. There are many vendors in the market who provide CAD, CAM, CAE and PLM software but what differentiates Siemens PLM Software from others them is in the way they bring together various software elements into a solution that addresses a specific industry need or process.

Endeavoring to Bridge the Skill Gap in India
With continued emergence of technologies, trends and new business needs, Siemens PLM Software recognizes the need of skilling up required to address competency gaps that prevent companies from meeting their business objectives efficiently. The challenge arises because traditional educational institutions are not tuned to cope with today’s fast-paced market needs. “These institutions function in a very conventional way, whereas ‘skills’ need to get upgraded every day with each changing market trend. There is a huge skill gap in the technical and engineering field owing to demographic constraints and inadequate teaching staff”, says Suman. Addressing these gaps, Siemens PLM Software has started working with industries to build a platform that digitizes both engineering and technical skills. Siemens PLM Software’s views concerning the growing skill gap have been echoed by many industry executives and they have agreed to join hands to bridge the chasm. Locally accessible Centers of Excellence (COEs) have become valuable assets for sharing knowledge, providing a steady supply of skilled industrial manpower, and introducing new technology and necessary guidance to industries. “For example, Peenya Industries Association (PIA) along with Don Bosco Tech (DB Tech) and Siemens Industry Software, India have partnered to form the Peenya Advance Centre of Excellence (PACE) to address these vital requirements”, says Suman. With its differentiated initiatives to impart technical knowledge digitally, Siemens PLM Software aims to reach scores of youth across the country and empower them to contribute towards India’s manufacturing excellence.