Product data management (PDM)

Stop searching, start finding

You're probably all too familiar with the situation. You're under pressure from the competition, you need to conjure up new products with ever less time to do so, and your employees spend much of their time looking for essential information. The knowledge is there and you know it, but it's scattered among different folders, cabinets, filing systems, and various IT systems, be it CAD/CAM, Office, ERP/PPS or others.

There isn't enough transparency or direct accessibility. You're wasting precious time. And this problem doesn't only affect product development, but production too. Have the plans been updated? Have the most recent changes been added? Are you working on the basis of the most up-to-date calculations? Wasting time searching for information isn't just demotivating for your employees, it also costs time and money.

The solution lies in product data management (PDM) - which takes us on to the next problem.

Many systems are complex, expensive, and need a lot of support and maintenance. In short, they are unsuitable for midsize businesses because instead of creating a lean development process, you actually require additional employees for data management. What you hoped would be progress turns out to be the opposite.

The solution

Our solution to these problems is called Phoenix/PDM. Phoenix/PDM is a modern data management system: affordable, simple, adaptable and powerful. With Phoenix/PDM, your workflow and communications flow smoothly. All the company's data and processes are up to date, have the same status, and can be accessed from anywhere in the company - even over the Internet.

Instead of wasting time and becoming demotivated searching for information, your employees can increase your productivity.

Phoenix/PDM at a glance

  • Drawing management
  • Bill of materials (BOM) management
  • Version management
  • Classification
  • Approvals / workflow
  • 2D/3D CAD integration
  • PPS/ERP integration
  • Office integration
  • Electronic archiving
  • Intranet / Internet client
  • Visualization
  • Plot & output management
  • Scan management
  • Data conversion
  • Supports distributed sites

Giving ideas wings - how it works

We borrowed this flying metaphor to describe a basic working method. Data or documents are checked in and out in a controlled process.
Before data can be edited by a user, it must be checked out. Other users are then automatically blocked from editing it, in order to prevent potential confusion and chaos caused by different versions. Different users may however view or print a document at the same time. To make things clearer, all documents without released status are printed with an easily recognizable stamp. This serves as a clear indication that the document is being edited or is even blocked.
Once a document has been edited, it is saved and then automatically checked in again. The data is now available to all users again for further processing.

Accessing knowledge - archiving

For most companies, knowledge is their most important asset - assuming that they can access it. Phoenix/PDM provides fast, secure access to archived data. The data must first be released and then generated as archive data by Phoenix/PDM. After this point it can no longer be changed, thus preventing the possibility of manipulation, whether accidental or malicious. The software offers various search functions to help you find the information you need quickly, and it isn't limited to technical data such as CAD models or scanned drawings. Diagrams, order sheets, invoices, delivery slips from third-party vendors: all product-relevant data can be meaningfully linked together with Phoenix/PDM so you can access it quickly when you need it.

Constantly evolving - the change process

During the development process a part goes through countless changes. Usually, the different versions are identified by simple numbers or letters. But Phoenix/PDM documents all the associated information: the reason for the change, the date, and the name of the employee who performed the change. Notes can also be added to each record to include additional descriptions, comments, explanations or questions. Once released, a version can no longer be changed. Instead, a new change status must be created.

With Phoenix/PDM you can view the the entire life-cycle of a product, including all changes and development stages, at the touch of a button.

Modular and made-to-measure - adaptation

Off-the-peg software is usually unable to satisfy the complex individual needs of a business. Every company uses different ways of marking design documents, employs different work processes, and therefore has different requirements. That's why Phoenix/PDM is consistently parameterized. In other words, the same software solution can satisfy the needs of very different companies. Adaptation is achieved by means of simple configuration, with no time-consuming (and therefore expensive) programming. Phoenix/PDM can be easily adapted to your requirements profile. Each user sees only the input screen that they need to work effectively - you won't find any confusing, non-functioning gray areas in Phoenix/PDM.