I’ve been talking a lot about Google this last year mainly because my idea of the main issue in PLM is the lack of Software and database specialists to provide new software architectures, more flexible. And Google (and more recently Facebook and many other start-up company) has some of the best developpers in the world and has a lot of ressources. So to me if they decideto go into PLM, working on strong integrations with existing PDM systems, there’s a great chance that they get quickly a nice place on the market.
Integrate and enhance actual PLM solutions
The actual strength of google (despite search and advertisement) is in its productivity tools. We’ve seen in France that Google and Valeo are communicating about the fact that Valeo uses the Google Doc (I still have to verify in real life if it’s not just marketing). While talking to Tom Gill (from TAG Consulting) recently, he sent me the link for this offer on Google Job Site.
As a Business Systems Integration Analyst, you will help drive projects to improve the engineering design and manufacturing processes in the Product Lifecycle Management (PLM) area. You will support projects and processes the company manages through the Windchill PDMLink application and other integrated custom-built web applications. More experienced candidates should have a track record of having worked on varied types of projects in different business process areas and a solid knowledge of PLM products.
I see this job position as a will to add features like gmail, Google Calendar, etc… maybe some tool like Google storage could be also implemented to provide a performant file replication system for CAD.
Provide strong integrations with PDM providers
The next step Google could take is to realize that most CAD editors who came into PLM didn’t have a first-class knowledge, experience and advance technology to be able to provide flexible and reliable tools to manage large amount of data. Which is why Google could step into this market by connecting their solution with PDM proprietary system to let the CAD specific management to the specialists.
Apps and the cloud: good for PLM
Without officially being on the PLM editors market, Google provides a platform with the Google Apps Marketplace. Companies can select Apps and share data between these by at the same time being connected to Google calendar, Gmail, etc… producing a multi-solution Product Lifecycle Management system. Using their enormous amount of server resources the cloud based softwares provides a real flexibility for data and user quantity. (watch Google container datacenter video).
To me, the real challenge in PLM is in the three following points:
- Technology (use of latest web technology and database strategy)
- User interface (devices and graphical interfaces)
- Integration (more and more people realize PLM can’t be just one software)