WhichPLM has always, at its heart, been intended as the primary destination for news, insight, opinion and tools relating to PLM for the retail, footwear and apparel industries. Vigilant readers will have noticed that we (along with many others) now firmly believe the time has come to expand that scope.
Very recently we announced that the diversity of solutions and vendors represented in our supplier listings, news posts and articles would be increasing. Initially we opened our doors to suppliers of what we term “expanded PLM” – those solutions and software suites that support and expand the capabilities of what are traditionally thought of as “core” PLM solutions.
That expansion allowed everything from labour quantification systems to collaborative design tools to be properly represented on WhichPLM, reflecting the increasingly important role they have to play in the product development process.
As I wrote at the time, this reflected a broader industry trend whereby suppliers and customers alike are returning to the roots of PLM; by reevaluating its very definition, Product Lifecycle Management takes account of everything from product inception on a designer’s workstation, right through to its eventual delivery into flagship stores. The realities of today’s interconnected world have lead us to the stage where those stores may be virtual, and those designs may exist in the cloud – so the solutions that facilitate product design and store visualisation have, by definition, a place within PLM and a place on WhichPLM.
Today, the ever-mounting complexity of the global supply chain and the growing demand for rapid trend development mean that companies are increasingly turning to third-party consultancies to help them make the most of their ways of working and, crucially, their I.T. investments. Those consultancies are, in a very real sense, becoming part of the PLM landscape.
For me that news is heartening, but it also carries some real weight. In making my decision to allow consultancies to join WhichPLM I referred back to our original aim – back to the heart of WhichPLM – of helping to make sense of an increasingly bewildering market at a crucial juncture.
Since more and more companies are relying on third party consultancies to maximum their return on investment (both in core and expanded PLM), it is my responsibility to help our readers identify the best of those consultancies.
We would be failing our core aim if we failed to accurately reflect the state of the market. And that is why, starting today, you will begin to see those consultancies represented in these pages.
Visit our consulting listings to find out more.