Arena’s Fall 2013 Product Release is a monumental event. For a better perspective, I predict that the solutions offered in this release will be to the manufacturing industry what the wheel was to transportation...Okay, perhaps more like GPS was for in-car navigation.
Like the miracle of GPS to the directionally-challenged, the Fall 2013 Release will help you find your way, acting as the light on your path, guiding you through the morass of countless change orders or the curse of on-premise software patches, as that beacon of light pointing you towards the burgeoning chests of Doubloons while pirates sob in the distance, wishing they too could revel in the spoils of your manufacturing riches.
You get the idea. It’s big. The release introduces four unique new solutions — Arena Demand, Arena Projects, Arena Exchange, and Arena API. Individually, these applications allow manufacturers of all sizes to aggregate material demand, project manage with greater visibility, securely share build packages across your global supply chain teams, and integrate their business systems with Arena products. Collectively, these products represent a paradigm shift in how manufacturers embrace PLM solutions to transform their manufacturing operations and maximize business results.
“The Fall 2013 release is a giant leap in Arena’s product roadmap that both delivers a distinct competitive advantage to manufacturers as well as differentiates Arena from other PLM providers,” says Shaun Snapp, consultant and researcher at SCM Focus. And according to Chad Jackson, Principal Analyst of Lifecycle Insights, “Arena (Exchange) is an evolutionary step from traditional sharing spaces for PLM systems.”
Here's a breakdown of the four new products introduced within the Fall ‘13 Release:
Arena Demand — provides manufacturers with part visibility to calculate and forecast aggregate material needs to better negotiate the purchasing decisions of suppliers.
Arena Projects — connects the project schedule directly to the product record to increase change visibility and drive efficient, accurate development.
Arena Exchange — offers OEMs a secure, flexible environment to initiate collaboration with multiple users, at all differing supplier levels, throughout their global supply chain. No supplier’s licenses or provisioning required.
Arena API — allows customers to develop lightweight and flexible integrations from their enterprise application infrastructure and custom interfaces to Arena PLM.
Steve Chalgren, Arena’s Vice President of Product Management and Strategy, lists “improved visibility” as one of the themes and key benefits of the Fall ’13 release. Demand and Projects specifically address the lack of operational transparency that frustrate many modern manufacturers.
“When OEMs outsource their manufacturing, they also outsource their material planning, leaving them blind to the total quantity of parts they'll buy over the next year,” says Chalgren. “Arena Demand provides OEMs with parts visibility across product lines (both broad and deep) to forecast aggregated material demand to better negotiate bulk discounts. Similarly, Arena Projects empowers OEM Project Managers with greater visibility into the true advancement of the product record to eliminate decentralized project miscommunication and product error.”
Another theme of the new release is the importance of securely sharing product data that, according to Chalgren, applies to both the exchange of information across supply chain teams as well as transfer of data from Arena PLM to other business systems. “While OEMs want efficient supply chain approval processes, they don’t always want to give their primary supply chain contact's second and third teams access to their PLM system,” says Chalgren.
“Arena Exchange allows OEMs to forward, filter, and share build packages across their supply chain’s own supply chain, enabling more robust team collaboration. Lastly, with Arena API, customers can open a portal from their ERP or other business system directly into Arena’s product family to access BOMControl data.”
The Fall Release follows on the recent study by Business-Software.com that Arena was ranked as both a “Top Ten PLM Solution Provider” and a “Top Five Supply Chain Collaboration Software.” Arena was also recognized as the most affordable cloud-based solution in both reports.
Arena’s PLM solutions have helped manufacturers of all sizes realize the benefit of manufacturing in the cloud by providing customers up to 70% reduction in ECO cycle times and a 20% reduction in time to market. Arena helped Sierra Wireless streamline its supply chain processes allowing them to release 173 new products in the first year.
While these metrics are compelling, the measurable impact of Arena’s cloud-based PLM solution is, according to Craig Livingston, Arena’s CEO, poised to become even more eye-opening. He believes the introduction of these four new products will generate increasingly compelling ROI metrics for manufacturers considering an investment in PLM.
“Arena’s new products broaden our ability to solve more complex problems for an increasingly wide range of companies,” says Livingston. “Whether it’s helping a startup calculate the aggregate number of capacitors across their product lines or tying the project schedule directly to the product record, global enterprise manufacturers will appreciate Arena’s passionate commitment to helping our customers succeed; in fact, our ambitious product roadmap is the reason why Arena is recognized as the de facto PLM of choice for innovative manufacturers in Silicon Valley.”
To see more information about all the enhancements and new features in the Fall ’13 release please visit http://www.arenasolutions.com/products/plm/whats-new-fall-2013.