By Vilmer Ståhle
5 minute read
By Vilmer Ståhle
5 minute read
Fashion and apparel companies can embrace the digital transformation and turn to PLM software to improve the competitive edge - but what exactly are the key benefits and how is it that PLM can improve companies’ competitive ability? Let us try to explain.
If you are familiar with product lifecycle management, you probably already know the high-level benefits such as improved efficiency, reduced waste and costs, improved product quality, better supplier collaboration, improved time to market, decision making and retail presentation – and the list goes on.
Now, it can be difficult to imagine exactly how a PLM solution will help companies to achieve all these benefits.
So, to get a better idea of how PLM will help you achieve this, let us try to unfold some more practical scenarios and benefits that companies with integrated PLM software experience in their daily work.
1. Improved productivity
By working with a “single source of truth” (all data origins from the same place), all product data such as designs, collections, material libraries, sizes, colours, measurement charts etc., enabling both designers, production, managers and suppliers to always work with the latest information.
This means that collaborating with teams and suppliers takes up less time, as searching through emails and looking for the right information is no longer relevant. More specifically, PLM software can reduce the number of time-consuming phone calls, emails, and time spent on searching for- and updating un-aligned information.
A cloud-based PLM system enables employees to work remotely - and opens up for better knowledge sharing as PLM functions as a knowledge management base, accessible for all relevant employees.
By optimizing operations with PLM, fashion companies can increase productivity and focus on innovation, designing, collection planning and stronger supplier collaboration.
2. Reduced costs
By collaborating across internal teams and multiple external suppliers in a PLM system, it is possible for fashion companies to increase tech pack accuracy to significantly reduce the very costly sample and product mistakes.
Working with a centralized PLM solution with all product data gathered in one place means that product data will always be up to date. Chasing information between employees’ local folders and excel sheets will no longer slow down workflows as employees can access the latest updated information anytime. This way, efficient knowledge sharing will help reduce costs.
In addition, working with updated information means that employees don’t have to spend time with redundant information processing and data maintenance of product data in Dropbox, Excel and email.
Also, a cloud-based PLM solution helps to optimize the sourcing and production process in order to improve product margins and supplier collaboration processes to reduce costly sample errors, avoid expensive, last-minute shipping costs and miscommunication that can delay sourcing.
Ultimately, this helps fashion companies to reduce costs and increase productivity all at once.
3. Improved decision making
A cloud-based PLM provides visibility into material costs, pricing and product margins with price simulations, dashboards and reports - enabling data-driven decision making based on:
- Collection performance
- Collection planning
- Price simulations
- Cancellation rates
- Supplier audits
With an integrated analytics module to prepare collection insights and visualizations, PLM can help fashion and apparel companies to set suitable performance measurements and improve decision making through statistical evidence and insights into the performance of all collections. With better planning and overview of collection performance, companies can make sure not to manufacture more products than they can sell, enabling them to meet minimum order quantities (MOQ) and reduce waste all at once.
PLM software makes it possible to visualize and compare collections, styles and prices, making it easier to make well-documented decisions when planning collections and deploying the right products and prices.
At the same time, PLM makes it possible to take a thorough look into product quality and compliance, by auditing suppliers and measure Acceptable Quality Limits (AQL). This way, fashion companies can see which suppliers have the biggest cancellation rates and who delivers the best samples, in order to work with the most efficient and best-suited manufacturers.
Using PLM software will help to improve data reliability and accuracy in the entire organization and enable better and faster decision making throughout the development process.
To conclude, bringing new products to market is a broad act of commercialization entailing production, distribution, marketing, sales, customer support and a range of other key functions.
A PLM system for fashion and apparel companies will improve productivity by gathering data in a single source of truth, aligning design, production, management and suppliers. Reducing costs and improved decision making are also key benefits of a PLM system for fashion and apparel companies.
And last but not least, a PLM system will help companies to address the product commercialization aspect by streamlining their supply chain which can ultimately improve the company’s competitive edge and profitability.
Benefits of PLM software for fashion and apparel companies:
- Increased productivity
- Reduced cost
- Improved decision making
- Better product quality
- More efficient data sharing
- Accelerated time to market
- Better supplier collaboration
- Better collection planning
- Reduced data and entry errors
- Helps to address the product commercialization aspect
- Less stressed employees
- Organization less sensitive to employee changes
To learn how your company can improve productivity, reduce costs and enable better decision making, book a demo consultation and let us together analyse your current processes in order to see if our PLM Software is the right solution for your company.