Successful PLM Implementations

Successful PLM implementations have much in common.  These are things your company can address that will help ensure your success.

Find a Champion

A champion doesn’t need to be a high level executive; they just need to be well respected within your company.  They will act as the ‘pied piper’ for the project.  They will push the benefits to the users and to management.  They will get everyone on the same page.

Manage the Scope

You may have a great vision for the big picture, but you should start small.  Begin with an application that has some visibility, but make sure that you can complete it in less than 6 months.  The longer a project takes the more enthusiasm it loses.  It is important that people see the success so that the will want ‘some of that’.

Document your Processes

When analyzing the process involved in your application [project], don’t try to model how the process should work – model how it works today.  Process improvement is another project entirely.  The search for a better process can take a very long time.  Perfection is not your objective [it is also unobtainable].  Implement your current process and make improvements as you go.  The only exception to that is if you can see an activity taking place that adds no value – then I would remove that one.

Field a Project Team

Involve a team that represents all the stakeholders.  If they have some input, they will feel some ownership.  This helps the project be successful.  One person can kill a project like this.  If you suspect who that might be, get them on the team.  Get them involved – this will minimize any negativity.


Measurements are important when analyzing your processes.  In order to improve a process, you need to know how it is working presently.  Then you can make improvements and measure again to see if you improved it.

This is not a complete list but the successful PLM implementations that I have seen all have these in common.

By the way – Companies that have successfully implemented PLM solutions have seen real benefits, you could too…


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