New Workgroup product extends on-demand PLM to companies and teams of all sizes
Menlo Park, CA January 25, 2005 Arena Solutions Inc., a provider of on-demand product lifecycle management (PLM), has announced an initiative to accelerate the adoption and use of PLM among manufacturing and design teams of every size by offering Arena PLM Workgroup Edition, an entry-level version of its PLM solution, at no cost for the first year.
Designed for teams of five or fewer, Workgroup Edition is built on the same on-demand PLM infrastructure as Arena PLM Professional Edition, the company's PLM offering for larger companies and development teams. The solution has product record management functionality bundled with online tutorials, sample data sets and full customer support.
Kevin O'Marah, vice president of Research, AMR Research, recently noted in the article "Arena Solutions Proves PLM Can Be Quick, Cheap, and Almost Painless" (June 10, 2004), "Two big trends meet in Arena Solutions' business strategy: PLM as the technology infrastructure to improve product innovation processes and on-demand software delivery as a way to minimize upfront risk for buyers. The problem for cynics who slogged through multiyear client/server product data management (PDM) implementations in the late 1990s is that the pain of getting started has been overwhelming."
O'Marah went on to say that Arena has attacked the problem at its root, using Web architectures and single instance software. He concluded that on demand and PLM are real, and many companies can approach PLM with an expectation of strong return on investment (ROI) and minimal disruption to daily operations while getting started."
According to Arena, the high cost and complexity of implementing and using client/server PLM applications traditionally has been a major obstacle to adoption, especially for smaller teams. However, Arena said its on-demand delivery model and new Workgroup Edition enables start-ups at the earliest stages to begin realizing the benefits of PLM.
"With Workgroup Edition, Arena has effectively addressed our need for product revision control and streamlined communication with suppliers," said Jaskarn Johal, Engineering director for Santa Rosa, Calif.-based Threshold Corp., which develops and markets a line of home server products and peripherals. "We went live within six hours of
registration, and in the process of uploading [bills of materials (BOMs)], detected product discrepancies that had not been apparent in our previous Excel-based manual process. Adopting Workgroup Edition was an obvious choice, enabling us to implement PLM best practices far earlier in our company's development than we would have and generating material cost savings before we go to production."
Designed to help early-stage companies and small product teams within large companies, Arena's Workgroup Edition provides PLM functionality for managing the complete product record. These features include core product definition capabilities, document version control and basic supplier access. Detailed product definition features include item and BOM management, supplier management, document vaulting, and costing.
Arena said it will provide full support options for Workgroup that parallel the support options available with Arena PLM Professional Edition.