In the digital era, data is the lifeblood of industries, especially in engineering and manufacturing. An integrated approach to managing and sharing this data can spell the difference between project success and costly delays.
We started OpenBOM with the vision to help manufacturing companies manage businesses using data. It means OpenBOM can be a foundation that aggregates engineering information, makes it available downstream, recombines and fuses it with other data sources, and is capable of providing insight to support the decision process to improve organizational effectiveness.
OpenBOM, as a flexible data management and collaboration platform, presents a new modern approach to how we view and interact with data. In this article, I’d like to explore OpenBOM solutions starting from free cloud PDM, tools to accelerate new product development and to support organizations of digital thread.
The foundation of the OpenBOM data platform is a product knowledge graph allowing the connection of various pieces of information together.
In this blog, I want to share more information about OpenBOM’s solution strategy from a free and simple cloud PDM to solution for New Product Development and Digital Thread.
Introducing OpenBOM Data Platform
At its core, OpenBOM is a versatile data management and collaboration platform tailored for engineers and manufacturing companies. It has been designed to effortlessly handle data ranging from product specs, and manufacturing processes, to intricate component relationships. By moving beyond the limitations of traditional Product Data Management (PDM) systems, OpenBOM offers a platform that’s not only scalable but also immensely flexible.
The foundation of the OpenBOM polyglot persistence data management solution is the use of a Graph Database (Neo4j) that enables many innovative data management (starting from Mongo and flexible data model) and ending with graph data science.
Before we delve deeper into what OpenBOM has to offer, it’s essential to discuss three pivotal solutions that the platform provides: Cloud PDM, NPD (New Product Development), and the Digital Thread. These solutions are foundational in understanding the immense potential and opportunities that OpenBOM brings to the table.
Cloud PDM: Breaking Boundaries for Free
Even when manufacturing is moving to the cloud, files are an essential mechanism for everyone to manage them. You need to put these CAD files somewhere. This is how OpenBOM came up with the recent announcement about free cloud CAD (Design Projects). It isn’t just about data storage—it’s about the seamless integration, management, and sharing of data across various entities. The cloud-based nature ensures that data is accessible from anywhere, at any time, using any device, breaking the chains of conventional localized systems.
With OpenBOM’s Cloud PDM:
- Teams can collaborate in real time, reducing the chances of miscommunication.
- Manage Design projects, eliminating the problem of sharing data.
- Deployment is quick, requiring no complex installations or infrastructure setups.
- Scalability becomes a non-issue; the platform can handle both small teams and vast enterprises.
New Product Development – Agile Framework for SMB and NPD/ Design Groups of Enterprise Accelerating Innovation
New Product Development is the heartbeat of the manufacturing and engineering sectors. It signifies innovation, growth, and progress. However, NPD is often fraught with challenges—from communication gaps to data discrepancies.
OpenBOM’s solution focuses on streamlining the NPD process:
- Integrated Data Management: All the data from conceptualization to manufacturing is integrated, eliminating silos for engineering design, BOM, procurement, and assembly.
- Collaborative Framework: Teams, both internal and external, can work together seamlessly.
- Real-time Updates: As changes are made, they’re updated in real-time, ensuring everyone is on the same page using patented BOM collaboration.
- Efficient Workflows: Automation and optimized processes lead to faster product development and purchasing cycles.
The Digital Thread: Weaving Data Seamlessly
The Digital Thread is a conceptual framework that connects every aspect of the product lifecycle, from its inception to its retirement. It provides a continuous flow of data, which is traceable and accessible.
At the first level, OpenBOM allows you to organize a design digital thread connecting design models and information together. The key element of this strategy is to go beyond current design data silos.
Next to that, OpenBOM is coming with the framework and capabilities to connect data in engineering, production planning, procurement, and other organizations.
With OpenBOM, the Digital Thread becomes a tangible reality:
- End-to-End Connectivity: All elements, from design to production, are interconnected.
- Data Integrity: As data moves through the lifecycle, its integrity is maintained.
- Traceability: It becomes easy to trace the origins of decisions, changes, and modifications.
- Enhanced Decision Making: With a clear view of the data, better decisions can be made regarding design, manufacturing, and even marketing.
The foundation of OpenBOM digital thread capabilities is in the efficient, flexible, and robust data management platform using graph databases and advanced graph data science algorithms.
OpenBOM isn’t just a tool—it’s a paradigm shift in how we view, manage, and share data in the engineering and manufacturing sectors. Through its Cloud PDM, New Product Development, and Digital Thread solutions, it opens the door to endless possibilities, setting the stage for a more integrated, efficient, and innovative future.
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