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Product Variability

Discrete manufacturing companies face increased demand for more specialized and more personalized products. Yet, increased global competition forces discrete manufacturing companies to focus on operational excellence targets to drive down the unit cost. The answer to successfully aligning these somewhat contradicting objectives lies in planned product variability through which you can provide your customers with attractive products that meet their expectations without driving up product cost. 

Product Variability

 Engineering departments today must develop smart products that integrate mechanical functions with electronics and controls, utilize new materials and manufacturing methods, and deliver new designs within ever shorter design cycles. Connected products developed at the forefront of digitalization take the complexity of product development to yet another level.

Throw in the fact that customers increasingly expect more specialized and more personalized products, and you have a tough nut to crack. This has often been thought of solely as a design problem and product lines are often the result of years of delivering customized products. However, the reality is that decisions about which product variants to offer should be made long before a designer begins his work. And the implications of those decisions impact people across the product lifecycle. This requires current engineering practices to evolve into a Digital Twin approach, which will help you be way more effective in achieving the right balance between various requirements.

Flexible Product Line Engineering 

 

Deliver the variety your customers demand while driving profitability. Teamcenter enables a single definition of variability across domains and the lifecycle. Instead of being hardcoded into design data product options are managed independently to be leveraged across the organization. This provides an easy to use a common source of configuration data. Planners can define products; product lines and features they want to bring to market. And engineers can focus on creating designs that can be combined into valid configurations. Downstream operations benefit as well. Manufacturing can generate a BOP leveraging that same definition, and field service operations can leverage precise asset configurations to drive efficient maintenance and repair services. 

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Engineering Automation

 

Many discrete manufacturing companies, especially in the heavy machinery industry, operate in markets where each delivered product needs to be engineered to meet specific customer requirements. Such highly complex engineered-to-order products require new variants of parts and designs to be created and manufactured with every order. Minimizing the order engineering time is key to reducing delivery times. Even if the product does not lend itself to designing all variants up-front, order engineering can in most cases be automated with Rulestream through defining and implementing design rules that drive the engineering. With this automation in place, you can quickly and accurately address customer-specific requirements and generate new variants of parts and designs with a high level of confidence. Rulestream engineering automation lets you also create bid and manufacturing packages in minutes instead of days or weeks. 

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What if Your Delivery Process is a Mix of ETO and CTO? 

To truly manage and automate configured products, you need more than a standalone engineer-to-order system and more than standalone product configuration management tools or systems. We can provide you with an integrated product configuration management solution, that enables you to leverage the strength of Teamcenter and Rulestream together, as well as the unique capabilities offered by other engineering tools. This allows you to spend more time on delivering the right products to market, and less time trying to figure out how to manage or copy information between disparate systems. 

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