Transforming Product Development
From Dream to Reality
Imagine, if you will, the perfect product development process. It will probably be one in which you have continual, comprehensive and failsafe access to your data. Your product’s digital thread stretches unbroken across functions, business units, systems, processes and enterprise boundaries, regardless of time or place. Your digital twin is alive and well and easily keeps pace with your real-world product.
Looking at on-the-ground reality in many businesses, however, the digital thread often breaks – and data silos, redundancies as well as information-related discontinuities in product development and decision-making processes are all-too familiar problems. According to a 2022 IDC study, only slightly more than one in ten businesses can currently claim a defined end-to-end data and analytics strategy – a major prerequisite for industrial digitalization.
Why should this be? After all, Industry 4.0, the digital twin and (I)IoT all offer businesses concepts for developing cross-enterprise data networks and establishing seamless, digitally supported value chains.
Our experience shows that it’s often the result of a lack in guidance, combined with a confusing wealth of possibilities on one hand and complex business expectations on the other. Then there are concerns about incalculable costs – and the human factor: Reshaping product development means having to rethink and perhaps reject accepted truisms.
The readiness to do so – the “change maturity” of the business and its management – is the key determinant for the continued success of that business.
Often, we have to start by inviting people on board, by convincing them and getting them to leave their comfort zone behind. We may have all the consulting expertise, the experience and the technology on our side, but if the client business doesn’t create structures that will help it overcome its limitations, the project won’t succeed. The challenge – and the key to success – lies in changing traditional ways of doing and seeing things.
Based on a very wide range of client projects, CENIT’s PLM experts have developed a digitalization approach that focuses equally on strategy, technology, guidance and the “human factor”.
The approach hinges on two dimensions that are decisive for manufacturing enterprises: The product development/innovation process on one hand and operative business processes on the other.
What’s the objective? To optimize and digitally fuse these processes and systems across the entire product development cycle – all the way through to maintenance and product feedback, and both horizontally and vertically. That requires consistent data flows and optimally organized processes based on a digital backbone.
Operative aspects and innovative processes – two worlds merged into one: To let data and processes transcend system boundaries seamlessly and consistently, CENIT has developed a platform linkbetween Dassault Systèmes and SAP.For the first time, this new software architecture offers businesses the chance to drive their value-adding processes across platforms – on-premises, cloud-based or hybrid.
We adhere strictly to the principle that the actual value-adding or PLM process, which describes the path from the product idea through to aftermarket issues, and the ERP process, i.e. the entirety of order processing including control, logistics, etc., must always be viewed and consistently addressed as a single process.
Companies that want to succeed with end-to-end integration, automation and management of their business processes will have to take on the challenge of combining a number of existing IT systems – only very few begin with a blank slate.
To help them rise to that challenge, CENIT has developed a consulting methodology that analyzes and evaluates the client’s goals, strategies and methods as well as the legacy IT systems and software tools. CENIT’s experts then assess these interrelated components to derive a phased, client-specific plan of action. Instead of spending the next months turning out blueprints, this plan is directed at rapidly making useful applications available and supplying a wide range of best practices to quickly and efficiently achieve initial success stories and optimization victories.
Get in touch with us – let’s tackle your product development together!
Senior Vice President SAP Solutions
Senior Vice President Dassault Systèmes Solutions & COO Keonys