The ability to configure manufacturing products on the fly according to certain customer needs is an essential element of any engineer-to-order, configure-to-order, manufacture-to-order, and assemble-to-order type of manufacturing. There is a class of software applications dedicated to performing the task of transforming customer technical product requirements into customized bills of material, and, sometimes, extending to the creation of sales and manufacturing orders. Such applications—generally called product configuration software, or product configurators—allow users to select options needed based on predefined logic, or create a custom product with new parameters. Read the rest of this entry »
After almost a decade of following the enterprise applications market via insightful, sometimes exhaustive (and exhausting) free research articles (which will continue to go on in earnest and continue to be rated by our readers), the time has come for me to be in tune with the Web 2.0 and related social networking. In other words, the time has come for my blog at TEC, and the dilemma was then what to start with.
Well, given that facilitating impartial software selections has always been TEC’s “raison d’etre”, then the first topic should logically have something to do with that. To that end, as discussed in our now ancient article “Do You Know How to Evaluate Your Strategic Technology Provider?” , best practices drawn from TEC client organizations that have completed internal technology selections suggest that project teams should examine six key criteria groupings. The first three criteria sets should examine product specific capabilities, while the second three should investigate the software vendor’s overall corporate capabilities.
One of the later three criteria is Vendors’ Corporate Viability, defined in the above article as Read the rest of this entry »