Speed up product development through optimized supply chain collaboration

Automate sharing data and tracking deliverables with cloud PLM-connected workflows.

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Align product development teams and suppliers

Emails. Spreadsheets. File sharing links. For most companies, these are the tools of choice for supply chain management. But there’s a better way. One that connects design, engineering, procurement, and operations to provide complete supply chain transparency and traceability: Autodesk cloud-based PLM. With automated supply chain workflows, PLM can accelerate product development, reduce defects and non-conformities, improve agility, and reduce waste. 

See why manufacturers rely on cloud PLM for successful supply chain collaboration.

Improve supply chain collaboration with cloud PLM

Put all your supplier information in one location

Create approved manufacturer and vendor lists (AMLs and AVLs) to keep key supplier information accessible—from which components they provide to how important they are to your organization.

Always know just which supplier to use, and when

Maintain a list of your best suppliers in one central location that everyone can access—no more digging through old emails, spreadsheets, or bills of lading.

Ensure suppliers meet compliance requirements

Connect suppliers to a central system of BOM data, structured PLM workflows, and product requirements for compliance, audits, and corrective actions when needed.

Achieve greater accuracy in the procurement process

Share product drawings and 3D visualization models with suppliers to show design details for accurate quoting—and keep internal stakeholders aligned on deliverables to improve project outcomes.

Maintain company agility during supplier reviews

Keep suppliers and internal stakeholders up-to-date with automated supplier reviews, including real-time status of supplier availability for better decision making from your engineering, procurement, and quality teams.

Integrate PLM with your other enterprise systems

Connect your PLM supplier data to your CRM and ERP systems—and exchange supplier, inventory, and product data across your entire organization automatically, without any manual intervention required.

See how others use PLM for supply chain collaboration

PLM software for supply chain collaboration

Cloud PLM to enhance workflows and improve collaboration across teams, partners, and suppliers.

Product data management combined with cloud PLM to connect your people, processes, and data.

See what the experts say on PLM and supply chain collaboration

Woman working on laptop with graphic showing supply chain management workflow in PLM software


Improve supply chain management and collaboration

Explore strategies for connecting with your global supply chain using collaboration tools and built-in supplier management workflows.

Cover of report titled "Product lifecycle management: A catalyst for business transformation"


Explore how cloud PLM will transform manufacturing

Today’s PLM must do more than manage data—it must deliver visibility across the entire product development process.

Cover of commentary titled "Autodesk PLM: Connecting the extended enterprise"


Learn how Autodesk PLM connects extended business

Discover what consulting firm CIMdata says about Autodesk PLM’s connected processes for supplier collaboration.

Product lifecycle management solutions

Product data management (PDM)

Increase product development agility and minimize your time on low- and no-value tasks with a PDM solution that works with your existing CAD workflows.

Bill of materials (BOM) management

Give your extended teams real-time data access with a centralized, cross-departmental bill of materials that maintains data integrity throughout your product lifecycle.

Change management

Help teams automate and document each change and revision—throughout every phase of your product lifecycle—with a robust, cloud-based change management solution.

Quality management

Improve product designs, identify supplier problems, and bring products to market more quickly by giving your teams the tools they need to close the loop on quality.

New product introduction (NPI/NPD)

Accelerate the time from concept to production with configurable project templates and standardized phase-gate milestones, deliverables, and tasks.

Product lifecycle management (PLM)

No matter what CAD software your teams use, help them work and collaborate more effectively with a PLM solution that keeps everyone on the same page.

Start quickly and scale easily with Autodesk PLM

Connecting your supply chain with Autodesk PLM—and gaining transparency and traceability—is easier than you think. Talk to Sales about the out-of-the-box workflows you need to get up and running today.

Frequently asked questions about PLM software for supply chain collaboration (FAQs)

How does PLM for supplier collaboration facilitate communication with our supply chain?

Product lifecycle management for supplier collaboration provides a system where product-related data is centralized and accessible in real-time. This includes design details, specifications, changes, and timelines, which suppliers can access to stay informed and aligned. The ability to share instant updates and notifications helps prevent miscommunications and delays. It reduces errors and rework and helps keep workflows efficient and synchronized so product development teams and suppliers are working with the most up to date information. PLM also supports automated processes, like notifications for changes, ensuring all parties are promptly informed. By centralizing product information and collaborative workflows, PLM can significantly enhance supplier collaboration and supply chain communication.

What PLM capabilities support real-time collaboration between different stakeholders in the supply chain?

Product lifecycle management (PLM) systems, like Autodesk Fusion Manage, provide a comprehensive set of capabilities to support real-time collaboration among different supply chain stakeholders. As a cloud-based PLM system, it enables instant access to the most current product data, helping to ensure that all team members have the latest accurate information. It supports live updates and simultaneous multi-user access for collaboration anywhere, anytime. The PLM system also features integrated communication tools such as discussion threads, comments, and task notifications, making it easy for roles with different responsibilities to interact and exchange feedback. Access control settings allow for secure sharing of sensitive information and cross-functional collaboration among different stakeholders in the supply chain. 

How does PLM's BOM management capabilities enhance supply chain visibility?

PLM's Bill of Materials (BOM) management capabilities play a crucial role in enhancing supply chain visibility. The BOM serves as a comprehensive list of parts, assemblies, and other components of a product, providing a clear view of the product structure. PLM allows for real-time BOM updates, ensuring all stakeholders have instant access to accurate, up-to-date information. It also supports multi-level BOMs, enabling users to drill down into sub-assemblies for detailed analysis. Different BOM views make it easy for stakeholders to have the BOM view that is most relevant to their role. Additionally, BOM comparison tools aid in identifying changes, which helps prevent potential miscommunications. By centralizing and streamlining BOM management, PLM promotes transparency and coordination across suppliers with enhanced supply chain visibility.

How can PLM help in managing changes across the supply chain?

PLM systems, such as Autodesk Fusion Manage, play a pivotal role in managing changes throughout the supply chain. The PLM system offers a comprehensive change management process with tools for tracking, approval, and implementation of changes in a structured manner. PLM provides a common database where all change requests, their impacts, and statuses are clearly visible to all stakeholders. This ensures that everyone, from design teams to suppliers, is informed about the changes in real time. PLM also supports automated workflows for change approval, ensuring a smooth transition and minimizing disruption. By harnessing these capabilities, PLM systems can significantly streamline change management across the supply chain.

How can PLM help me manage quality processes with my supply chain?

PLM can significantly improve supplier quality and accountability by providing a centralized system that facilitates real-time visibility, communication, and collaboration across the product lifecycle. It allows your organization to capture, manage, and track all supplier-related information and activities in one place. This includes supplier qualifications, performance metrics, and corrective actions. By automating workflows and processes, PLM reduces errors and inefficiencies, and helps ensure consistent adherence to quality standards. It also supports traceability and auditing, enabling you to hold suppliers accountable, mitigate risk, and make informed decisions. This comprehensive approach leads to improved product quality and strengthened supplier relationships with greater accountability.

How can PLM help me manage my new product introduction processes with my supply chain?

Product lifecycle management (PLM) streamlines new product introduction (NPI) by providing a centralized system for managing all product-related data and processes. With PLM, you can effectively collaborate with your supply chain partners on design and production plans, ensuring alignment. It aids in sharing accurate product specifications and changes with suppliers, thereby reducing errors. PLM improves traceability, allowing you to track components from suppliers through to final product assembly. This ensures quality and compliance standards are met. Furthermore, PLM's predictive analytics can anticipate potential risks in the supply chain, facilitating proactive management and smoother NPI. PLM brings efficiency, quality control, and risk management to your NPI processes.

What are the benefits of PLM for supply chain collaboration?

Product lifecycle management (PLM) delivers significant business benefits for supply chain collaboration. By centralizing product data, it ensures all stakeholders have access to the same information, reducing errors and improving decision-making speeds. It enhances supplier performance visibility, allowing for better partner selection and management. PLM offers complete product traceability, crucial for quality control and compliance. Collaborative problem-solving becomes seamless, enabling quick issue identification and resolution. The ability to share accurate, real-time product changes with suppliers reduces rework and waste. Overall, PLM fosters a more efficient, responsive supply chain, leading to improved product quality, reduced time-to-market, and ultimately, increased customer satisfaction.

What are the key features of PLM for supply chain collaboration?

Product lifecycle management (PLM) systems possess critical features that enhance supply chain collaboration. A key feature is the ability to centrally manage real-time sharing of product data, promoting consistency across all stakeholders and reducing errors. PLM also offers comprehensive supplier management tools, enabling tracking and monitoring of supplier performance and quality metrics. An essential feature is traceability, offering visibility into the product's journey across the supply chain, crucial for quality control and regulatory compliance. The system also includes tools for collaborative problem-solving, facilitating efficient identification and resolution of issues. Lastly, change management features ensure timely communication of product changes to all parties, thereby maintaining alignment and reducing rework.

How does PLM help in identifying and mitigating supply chain risks?

Product lifecycle management (PLM) systems play a crucial role in identifying and mitigating supply chain risks. PLM allows for real-time visibility into supplier performance, which can flag potential issues early on. It provides comprehensive traceability of components and materials, aiding in managing risks related to quality control and compliance. PLM also facilitates predictive analytics, enabling the anticipation of potential bottlenecks, delays, or disruptions in the supply chain. Furthermore, collaborative problem-solving tools in PLM can help address issues swiftly, reducing the impact of risks. By integrating all these aspects, PLM helps provide a proactive approach to supply chain risk management, enhancing operational resilience and business continuity.

Does PLM support the integration of supply chain data from different sources?

Yes, product lifecycle management (PLM) systems are designed to support the integration of supply chain data from various sources. PLM serves as a central repository for all product-related data, including data from suppliers, manufacturers, and customers. It can integrate data from different systems such as Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP), Customer Relationship Management (CRM), and Manufacturing Execution Systems (MES). This integration allows for a comprehensive view of the product lifecycle, from design to distribution, and aids in making informed decisions. By unifying data from disparate sources, PLM systems enhance collaboration, improve efficiency, and help manage quality across the supply chain.

Can PLM help standardize product development processes across the supply chain?

Yes, product lifecycle management (PLM) systems can significantly help standardize product development processes across the supply chain. PLM provides a unified system where all product-related data and processes can be managed, facilitating the adoption of consistent procedures and standards across all stakeholders. It ensures that everyone, from designers and engineers to suppliers and manufacturers, is working from the same set of information and following the same processes. This standardization not only reduces errors and rework but also speeds up product development. By promoting consistency and alignment throughout the supply chain, PLM systems enhance efficiency, improve product quality, and reduce time-to-market.

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