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Product data management (PDM) is the use of software to manage product data and process-related information in a single, central system. This information includes computer-aided design (CAD) data, models, parts information, manufacturing instructions, requirements, notes and documents. The ideal PDM system is accessible by multiple applications and multiple teams across an organization, and supports business-specific needs. Choosing the right PDM software can provide a company in any industry with a solid foundation that can be easily expanded into a full product lifecycle management (PLM) platform.
At its core, a PDM system provides solutions for secure data management, process enablement, and configuration management.
PDM systems capture and manage product information, ensuring that information is delivered to users throughout the product lifecycle in the correct context. File ownership, version control (check-in and check-out of files), revision management, and release status are all managed by the PDM system. Security and administrative functionality protects intellectual property rights through role management, project-based security and associated access privileges.
Workflow and process capabilities enable both internal product teams and external partners to participate in the product lifecycle. A PDM system can help you establish, manage and execute automated workflow-driven processes that reflect company-specific best practices for change planning (what-if analysis), change incorporation (execution), and change verification and communication. A PDM system can also support other established processes, including phase-gate standards.
A PDM system provides the visibility necessary for managing and presenting a complete bill of materials (BOM). It facilitates the alignment and synchronization of all sources of BOM data, as well as all lifecycle phases, including the as-designed, as-planned, as-built and as-maintained states. Just as importantly, the PDM system should provide the change management capabilities that allow you to see the BOM before and after changes are made.
Lifecycle visualization provides sharing and on-demand representations of the product and its underlying assemblies and parts, without the need for a CAD authoring tool or special technical knowledge. Digital mockup capabilities can reduce the need for costly physical prototyping. The JT™ data format is the common 3D language for PLM visualization, and enables visualization and analysis of multi-CAD assemblies.
People who benefit from the knowledge management and reporting capabilities of PDM systems include project managers, engineers, sales people, buyers, and quality assurance teams. PDM systems allow companies to:
Here are examples of PDM software applications:
Teamcenter connects people throughout the product lifecycle with a single source of product and process knowledge. Teamcenter’s comprehensive portfolio of enterprise PDM solutions gives you the flexibility to choose the right mix of solutions for your business needs.
Teamcenter Express is a pre-configured and easy-to-deploy PDM solution that provides small and mid-sized companies with a single source of engineering data, together with highly efficient engineering task and process management.
PDM is an integral part of product lifecycle management (PLM) Used together with computer-aided design (CAD), computer-aided manufacturing (CAM), computer-aided engineering (CAE), and digital manufacturing, entire product lifecycles can be optimized for suitability, reliability and profitability.
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