PLM success depends on a bottom up approach with top down sponsorship!

I would like today to come back to one of my favorites: PLM adoption. As we go to another PLM initiative, the path to follow, the method to apply are coming back in the light.
One “well known” paradigm for enterprise systems is that top level management need to be involved and push the initiative. Is it true? Yes and no in my view. PLM is a special topic in that sense, it does not target directly financials but efficiency. And efficiency is coming from the ground, meaning the end users need to have the tool at hands to support their work: store files, get files, assign basic task, list my tasks. Easily. And that’s one major cause of failure of PLM, implementing a PLM application sometimes create new tasks for users, instead of facilitating their current ones. It means that users strongly need to participate to the PLM design, and tell where are their pain points.
Does it means that the top management do not need to be there? Of course not, money will be invested at least in the change process, so a value as to be defined. The company will benefit from efficiency enhancements. But additional value can come from process control for example. And usually users are not interested in process control. That’s where the PLM initiative has to carefully balance the benefits, between individual efficiency and corporate processes control.
Does it define a methodology? At least it’s a start!

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