Why Product Lifecycle Management is Important to Procurement Officers and How to Manage It

With the ability to gather large amounts of specific data, the way industries look at processes and products is changing. Product lifecycle management is one such new method whereby the entire lifecycle of a product, i.e. from its conception right up to its disposal, is managed by a single unit.

Product lifecycle management, or PLM, tries to manage every aspect of a product’s journey and thereby increasing its potential, quality, and also reducing the time required between each phase of its existence. Procurement officers who were earlier dealing with just one or two phases of a product’s lifecycle are now taking on the PLM approach.

The Growth of PLM

In recent times, PLM has turned into a full-fledged market of its own. Analysts are claiming that within the next few years, it will be worth more than $25 billion. And this is not without legitimate cause.

Studies show that companies switching to the PLM approach were able to reduce the time-to-market for their products by up to 30%. Furthermore, making the switch to the PLM model is not difficult. With minimal training, procurement officers are able to use state-of-the-art procurement software and track their products right from the beginning to the end.

How Does PLM Work for Procurement Officers?

A PLM software is a central hub of all product data that exists. Much like the existing work of a procurement team, it connects various nodes of a supply chain and beyond. Within this one software, cross-functional teams are able to communicate with each other and thereby build a collaborative process which allows for seamless management.

Necessarily, PLM software is a perfect tool to enable accurate decision-making and real-time progress tracking for procurement officers. Unlike regular supply-chain management software, PLM software will allow for progress tracking through all stages including concept and ideation, design and development, testing and verification, production and manufacturing, and finally deployment and support.

Another key aspect of PLM software is that it allows for ease in introducing workflow automation, an infallible part of the procurement process. Be it for tracking or managing revisions to a part of the process, with PLM software one can easily shift the workload to automotive functions.

The Future of the Procurement Industry is PLM

Whether you are part of a small business or a large enterprise, PLM is the way towards unlocking collaborative design and management, reducing errors, and streamlining processes. Find the right PLM software for your procurement process and you will be able to tell the difference in terms of both qualitative and quantitative output.