The use of a product lifecycle management tool can provide visibility and tracking through each stage of a product’s development and distribution and can be especially helpful when dealing with a dispersed workforce or a large number of suppliers. These types of management programs also have the potential to increase efficiency and uncover process improvements, which is less likely to occur when your PLM software is outdated. In the day and age of constant technological innovation and ongoing software development, it can be difficult to stay ahead of the game; it could be time to invest in PLM upgrade services. But, even with up-to-date software, it is important to understand the stages of a product’s lifecycle.
Before a new product can be created, it must first begin as an idea. Substantial research must be conducted to determine the viability of product creation, ascertain potential market penetration and develop an understanding of the competition before that idea can be transformed into a concept. Only then can it be designed and molded into a tangible prototype that can be tested and evaluated.
After the prototype is deemed ready for production, raw materials and sometimes completed components must be sourced from different suppliers or manufacturers. All of these components must come together for final assembly, and the finished product can then be shipped to retail locations for distribution to consumers.
Once a product goes to market, that isn’t the end of the story. Companies must evaluate sales to determine ongoing production requirements, consider product innovations and ensure customer satisfaction. Ultimately, when a product is on its decline in the market, it must be removed from circulation so the cycle can begin anew.
Each of these stages can incorporate many moving parts and a significant number of individuals. Utilizing a PLM system helps to ensure all of the details pertaining to a product and its development are accessible from the beginning to the end.