Ingenuus, Productfactory Offer Real-Time Life Cycle Management

Product life cycle management is going real time with ancillary offerings from Ingenuus Corp. and newcomer ProductFactory Inc.

Product life cycle management is going real time with ancillary offerings from Ingenuus Corp. and newcomer ProductFactory Inc.

This week, Ingenuus will announce Smart Product Chain Manager, software that manages global product life cycles and supply chain processes in real time. Ingenuus, of Livermore, Calif., designed Smart PCM to provide manufacturers, suppliers and customers with a single source of product data.

As an adjunct to PLM systems, PCM manages documents, parts, bills of materials, lists of approved vendors and design drawings. It warns of overdue task and action items.

PCM integrates with CAD and enterprise resource planning and with view, markup and edit systems. It is built atop Ingenuus Web-based Coordinated Execution platform. Smart PCM will be available early this summer.

After two years in incubator mode, ProductFactory, of Maynard, Mass., will officially launch the company and its suite of PLM products this week, said CEO Ed Fields.

Like Ingenuus, ProductFactory provides software and a central repository that organizes project information in one place. "We manage scheduling, the teams, the issues and issue resolution," said Fields. "What we really schedule is phased/gate and deliverables."

ProductFactorys suite consists of three applications: Deliver, Portfolio and Connect. Deliver is the program management piece. Portfolio establishes multiple criteria lists for each product development program, providing a score card for each. Connect is an adapter engine for dropping ProductFactory tools into IT infrastructures. An adapter for SAP AG products is due to ship in the next quarter.

The ProductFactory suite interfaces with Parametric Technology Corp.s Windchill PDM, or product design management, system. An interface for Agile Software Corp.s Agile Anywhere will be available in August and for Electronic Data Systems Corp.s Metaphase system within six months, according to Fields.

Billy Rycroft, IT operations manager at Eclipse Aviation Corp. is using ProductFactory a little differently from its intended use of product management.

"Were using it a ways outside the norm," said Rycroft, in Albuquerque, N.M. "Within the norm it works great, for things like project timelines, scan charts, download and upload of files, that kind of thing. Were using it for import and export of files for our vendors, mainly as a conduit for our vendors, or suppliers, to be able to send files to us and for us to send files to them."