Product Lifecycle Management

OpenBOM SaaS PLM

Cloud and web technologies created a unique platform to provide SaaS solutions and transform the PLM market. OpenBOM provides a full SaaS PLM solution uniquely positioned to help engineers, manufacturing companies, contractors, and supply chains. A spreadsheet was never built for PLM, BOM management, and collaboration. In a typical process of connecting engineers, contractors, production planners, suppliers, and contract manufacturers, the Bill of Materials is the lifeblood that allows this process to keep going.  

When Excel and email are the ways to communicate, companies can face tons of challenges – lost files, impossible to rollup cost, wrong information manually places in Excels, merging information from multiple suppliers, sending wrong files to contractors, getting access to drawings and many others.

While PLM software vendors are talking about PLM technologies as a “single version of the truth” for manufacturing for ages, this PLM systems and implementation are still the unachievable dreams for many manufacturing companies. Especially when it comes to small and medium manufacturing companies.

Check Beyond PLM blog – PLM for SMB: Business, Market and Numbers, you can find an interesting data point about the distribution of PLM sales between companies of different sizes.

This is a reason we built OpenBOM – to solve the problem of communication and data management for small and medium-size manufacturing companies to optimize their production process, managing data and communicate between teams and people located across the globe.

A single version of the truth

Product information is a foundation of design, planning, and manufacturing. How to manage it efficiently?

You can easily export data from CAD to Excel, but you will spend a lot of time making updates, especially if you will add more data such as cost, suppliers, planning, and other pieces of information.

Data sharing is another challenge. Send emails with Excels is easy, but finding the right Excel is hard. You will make mistakes and your team will end up using the wrong Excel.

Think about counting unique parts in multiple CAD assemblies. It is tons of work. And if you add more items added outside of CAD, you can spend hours doing it and you will make mistakes.

Rollup cost is another level of complexity, translating unit of measures used in BOM to purchasing units will turn you in chief excel officer.

Manual tracking of change history, revisions, and managing change approvals will slow down processes and will lead to mistakes.

So, you end up with wrong parts, purchase orders with mistakes, delays, additional cost, hard time to forecast, lost opportunity to use volume orders, and many other problems. Sending wrong information to contractors can be even more expensive and disruptive for business. Your team working with the wrong information will spend more time working on the wrong design and product planning.

The root cause of all problems I described above is inefficient data management. To organize and manage data in a modern distributed environment is a challenge that cannot be solved using traditional database systems or file servers. OpenBOM provides a uniquely flexible and scalable approach in data organization.

These are the top 5 things that create a unique value proposition of OpenBOM:

  1. Product record and a single version of the truth. OpenBOM creates unique data records for all items and corresponding information – Part Numbers, descriptions, revisions, cost, manufacturer, suppliers, lead time, etc. BOMs are using items and extend it with usage information (eg. Quantity, Project). OpenBOM data model is flexible and you can extend it at any time. The extension is a big deal as it allows to every company to be different, yet provides a way to organize the data.
  2. Automatic BOM creation and updates from any CAD systems. You won’t count manually anymore. A single click on the button will create BOM and update it when you do it next time. All changes are tracked and revisions can be created
  3. Automatic quantity calculation, formulas, and custom rollups. You can combine multiple assemblies into a single multi-level BOM and automatically calculate everything you need for planning and purchasing.
  4. Instant data sharing mechanism with a click of the button or automatic role-based sharing using team views.  OpenBOM instant share and Google-sheet like collaboration and simultaneous editing will guarantee you have all information up to date shared with everyone.
  5. Out of the box purchasing planning process. OpenBOM creates an Order BOM (planning BOM), which can scale the quantity to the level of the order, keep track of stock level (quantity on hand), and automate the process of purchase order creation.

Engineering Integrations

The core fundamentals of PLM are integrations with engineering systems such as CAD. OpenBOM support out of the box CAD integrations for many CAD systems. Check more here for all OpenBOM integrations (openbom.com/integrations). Also, check details about out of the box OpenBOM integrations and sample videos how to start using them.

Import Data from CAD

Navigate to OpenBOM Change Management Help to learn more about how OpenBOM helps you to manage revisions, changes and approvals.

OpenBOM Change Management and Change Requests