New Agile App Further Automates Component Sourcing

New software highlights Agile's newly devised Product Chain Management strategy

Business-to-business collaborative e-commerce software vendor Agile Software Inc. is upping the ante for direct procurement with three new direct materials sourcing modules.

The three solutions, announced Monday, fall under Agiles Product Sourcing rubric and are used for direct materials sourcing that provide visibility into a products DNA, so manufacturers can mange the ongoing cost of products.

The Sourcing Intelligence application provides feedback into the sourcing process through supplier analysis. The New Product Sourcing application helps companies identify and negotiate with suppliers.

Product Cost Management provides visibility into prices, lead times and other market information so a company can create cost benchmarks.

The new modules are expected to be available in the first quarter of 2002.

The new software highlight Agiles newly devised Product Chain Management strategy and propel the company into the product lifecycle management sector.

The San Jose, Calif., companys PCM strategy – which looks to link manufacturing, engineering, purchasing, suppliers and service organizations under one umbrella – is an ambitious undertaking as it nearly doubles Agiles current portfolio from six to eleven offerings.

Agile has organized its PCM solutions into three categories: Product Sourcing, Product Collaboration and Product Service & Improvement. Each area contains a number of solutions (both existing and new) that collectively are geared toward allowing companies to manage products through each phase of its lifecycle from conception to servicing.

The Product Collaboration module has six applications that allow for communication and collaboration within a company as well as with supplier networks.

The Product Service & Improvement suite unifies product development with customer management and service.

For the service end, product performance data – either through a CRM (customer relationship management) application or other means – is transmitted in real time to the various product functions using Agiles integration tools. A corrective action process is kicked in to address customer issues and that information is pushed out to corresponding CRM systems.

The Service Support module allows product and reference materials to be published directly to service organizations.