OpenBOM: Industry specific master and distributed ledger

I’m in Gothenburg this week engaged with PDT Europe and PLM Roadmap organized by CIMdata. OpenBOM is sponsoring the event. Read more, here. On the flight over and prior to the start of the event, I had the chance to catch up on some reading. An article I came across I found interesting was Jos Voskuil ‘s write up, Master Data Management and PLM. Two specific points resonated:

1. Data driven approach eliminating data transformation

2. Industry specific approach in data view

If you would currently start with an MDM initiative in your company and look for providers of MDM solution, you will discover that their values are based on technology capabilities, bringing data together from different enterprise systems in a way the customer thinks it should be organized. More a toolkit approach instead of an industry approach. And in cases, there is an industry approach it is sporadic that this approach is related to manufacturing companies. Remember my observation from 2015: manufacturing companies do not have MDM activities related to engineering/manufacturing because it is too complicated, too diverse, too many documents instead of data.

This picture is self-explanatory:

I found the diagram on the right to resonate with many use cases we are hearing from OpenBOM users which relate to an integrated data view in a company, many of which have and operate many systems. On top of all these systems, they have one giant spreadsheet helping them coordinate their activities. For most of them, it is not about how to sync data between systems, rather, how to interlink data between multiple systems and user activities together. To give you an idea of what I’m referring to, the following video gives you a very small concept of the data representation I’m referring too.

In the video, you may have noticed a 3D project of a speaker with a mechanical design and an electronic design for a PCB board. These two islands of data are connected together in the same BOM to provide you the ability to navigate and drill down between different levels of data, such as the product, configurations, the mechanical BOM and the electronic design BOM. However, OpenBOM provides you with an integrated view of the data automatically built from common characteristics. On top of this, the integrated view spans across multiple organizations and teams thanks to the OpenBOM multi-tenant data architecture.

Conclusion: A data driven approach will become the way to control and manage data in distributed organizations wanting to replace file management and painful synchronization of data across multiple silos of information. Stay tuned for more discussions to come about how blockchain technologies will allow you to create a consistent traceable data across multiple organizations.

Best, Oleg

PS. Let’s get to know each other better. If you live in the Greater Boston area, I invite you for a coffee together (coffee is on me). If not nearby, let’s have a virtual coffee session — I will figure out how to send you a real coffee.