Case Study

Machinery and tractor maker cuts product development time by 50 percent

LS Mtron

LS Mtron bolsters its competitive position by developing seamless workflow – design through manufacturing

Company simplifies complex product development operations with advanced PLM technology

LS Mtron is a leading industrial machinery and high tech parts producer, based in Korea. In the industrial machinery sector, the company produces tractors, injection machines, and defense products. In the high tech parts field, LS Mtron produces electronic parts, electronic circuit materials and ultra-capacitors. The company’s tractor business has shown exceptional growth and performance, reaching sales of US$100 million over the last ten years. Currently the company is poised for global expansion.

LS Mtron faced a huge disconnect between its business process and product lifecycle management (PLM) solutions. The company had recruited engineers familiar with a variety of different computer-aided design (CAD)/computer-aided engineering (CAE)/computer-aided manufacturing (CAM) solutions, which led to a very complicated business environment with unacceptably low product development performance. Lacking a standardized PLM system, the company’s research and development (R&D) performance and capacity were weak. In addition, the organization experienced poor performance relative to bill of materials (BOM) management. To overcome these challenges and become more competitive, LS Mtron decided to upgrade its CAD/CAE/CAM solution and product data management (PDM) platform.

“At first, we attempted to implement a PDM system along with a variety of CAD, CAE, CAM and ERP (enterprise resource planning) solutions from different companies,” says Kyu Moon Kim, team leader. “We found it difficult to manage all the data stemming from these solutions. We have very high standards and we felt our workflow was inefficient. To meet our goal to become the No.1 company in our field, we needed to upgrade our systems to achieve seamless data flow, cut costs and speed up time-to-market.”

Kim also noted that the company needed efficient global engineering change order (ECO) management to operate multisite R&D centers in a more collaborative manner. To meet these challenges, LS Mtron decided to standardize on NX™ software (for product development) and Teamcenter® software (for digital lifecycle management) from Siemens PLM Software.

An integrated solution enables systematic data management

LS Mtron especially liked the aspects of NX that would enable a quick and easy data migration as well as immediate strengthening of its R&D performance. By upgrading to NX, the company can more easily manage data to support the systematic administration of designs and documents, particularly revision controls.

In addition, through the implementation of Teamcenter, the company established a proficient approach to manage BOM data. The BOM process had previously been the source of many errors and inaccuracies during product development. Moreover, a system for faster and more accurate collaborative work was laid out to facilitate work for global ECO management at multisite R&D centers. This has allowed LS Mtron to build a foundation upon which new product development could be better managed to improve overall PLM system performance. This ultimately laid the groundwork for greater product innovation, helping LS Mtron take the next step towards achieving its goal of becoming the No.1 company in its field.

New product development time reduced by 60 percent

“With the upgrade of our existing PLM system, we have seen significant improvements in data management, BOM control, and design collaboration,” says Kim. “All of these improvements have helped us reduce costs and speed time-to-market. Our company has become more competitive and stronger in the global market, and we plan to further enhance our innovation process based on the needs of the users in our next stage of our PLM expansion.”

LS Mtron realized virtually immediate improvements in BOM operations and design standardization, as well as significantly reduced its ECOs. “Through new best practices for bill of materials management, we’ve reduced new product development time by 60 percent in both the tractor and injection machine areas,” says Kim. “Also, using NX, our company has reduced the time required to design 3D models by 30 percent. These are strong metrics.”

LS Mtron had been using I-deas™ software, also from Siemens PLM Software, for several years. Upgrading from I-deas to NX made the information technology (IT) process hassle-free. The upgrade process from one Siemens PLM Software technology to another was smooth and efficient, and importantly, without data loss. Moreover, use of the tightly integrated NX and Teamcenter is proving extraordinarily beneficial in terms of establishing a proficient and standardized design and document management environment.

The company is now taking a significant step forward towards establishing NX and Teamcenter as the foundation for global design management. Plans include an extended BOM operation and the use of Siemens PLM Software solutions for better intellectual property management. Kim notes, “We’re highly focused on product and process innovation. We want to continuously deliver the best professional tractor and injection machine equipment worldwide. We feel PLM is instrumental in achieving our goals.”

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