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Know your ABCs of Manufacturing Sales Software (ep.4)

In case you missed here you can find the post on CAD & PLM , on CRM & CPQ. and on, ERP and BOM.


Acronyms are meant to simplify things. However, every day there seem to be new ones popping up. Nowhere is this truer than in software, especially in manufacturing software.

Manufacturing software is a domain where acronyms are everywhere. The recent developments in new software solutions have multiplied the number of acronyms that are used daily. For example; a few years ago, the terms “CPQ” was still uncommon among large manufacturers. Today, “CPQ” has become indispensable for large manufacturers’ growth strategy.

Whether you are new to manufacturing, sales (or both), or you are simply having trouble keeping up with all the different types of software solutions available, we’ve created this series of posts to help get familiar with the lingo.

Let’s us know what you think (mateo.bornico@tacton.com)

PDM & PIM (Product Data/Information Management)

Focus area: Product

What it is?

PDM and PIM are both business functions of PLM (Product Lifecycle Management) covered in Episode 1. The primary function of PDM and PIM is to organize and securely store documents related to the product. Depending on the documents being managed, it can be divided into PDM and PIM. In digital solutions, the PLM will use a PDM to store and gather all the documents associated with the product.

PDM is about managing the technical data of the product. This can include all the CAD drawings, product sheets, BOMs and any other product specification required for the development and manufacturing of a particular product.

In contrast, PIM is about the general description and documents of the product. Typically a PIM can be used to manage marketing documents, product description performance and technical descriptions, etc.

Its role in the Sales Process:

A PDM is not necessary during the sales process. A PIM, however, can hold some of the documents that would be important during the sales process (product information sheets, promotional materials, service BOMs etc.). It is basically an organized way of keeping all related product documents so that they are easily accessible.

MES – (Manufacturing Execution Systems)

Focus Area: Product

What it is?

MES refers to the software systems that are used in the actual manufacturing of the products. MES help track (in real-time) and document the manufacturing process. It a way it helps decision-makers monitor and controls the production process. These systems also help the organization keep records and documents on “how it was built” data, as required for some heavily regulated products (such as food, pharmaceutical, etc.).

Its role in the Sales Process:

Given that MES is purely for the manufacturing side of the business, it really is not part of the sales process. The manufacturing process can certainly impact the sales process (in the case of delays, for example), however, this information generally submitting by the MES to the ERP. The EPR, in turn, can relay this information to the salesperson (via the CRM for example).

This is the fourth installment of our Lexicon Series. By now we’ve covered CAD, PLM, CPQ, CRM, ERP, BOM, PDM, PIM, and MES!
It seems like this is just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to manufacturing software. Which acronyms do you think should be on the list?
In case you missed here you can find the post on CAD & PLM , on CRM & CPQ and on, ERP and BOM.

If you found this useful or have some additional comments, please send me an email: mateo.bornico@tacton.com

Author: tacton_webdevadmin