ENOVIA Variant Configuration Central
Product managers use ENOVIA® Variant Configuration Central™ to tackle product customization and variety definition early in the “idea” or concept phase of the product development process.
As products become increasingly complex with costly mechanical, electrical, and software capabilities, customers are demanding products that fulfill their unique needs at the lowest possible cost. To stay ahead of the latest innovations and market trends, companies must transition from traditional design processes to an approach that supports the definition of conceptual product architectures for highly variable configurations.
Unfortunately, many companies today have no simple mechanism for designing products that provide high market variation with technical modularity while controlling costs. With ENOVIA Variant Configuration Central, companies can define conceptual product definitions that can be reused across a multiple series of products, satisfy market specifications, and provide many possible optional capabilities. These conceptual product definitions serve as a framework for defining variant products that are configurable and drive the generation of engineering bills-of-material (EBOMs). As a result, companies can expedite the design process and lower costs while meeting customer demands.
ENOVIA Variant Configuration Central enables companies to manage the conceptual and commercial aspects of their products. Product managers define and manage a master option dictionary that standardizes and enforce reuse of option effectivity across products and designs. Users leverage a single system architecture definition of the product as a conceptual framework to design and define the customization rules and parts to control custom choices and product costs. This approach to product definition helps companies get new product solutions to market faster, streamline the design process while minimizing design change and reducing development cost.
Companies improve their product introduction process and increase reuse by:
- Bridging the gap between marketing requirements and engineering
- Utilizing common modules across multiple product lines
- Delivering the right products to market as quickly and efficiently as possible
- Standardizing product definition across domains by establishing a master option dictionary with rules for all processes to adhere to.
ENOVIA Variant Configuration Central effectively implements product standards throughout the development process, allowing companies to:
- Simplify the order fulfillment process of complex products
- Manage products that meet market, customer, and product launch criteria
- Increase awareness of product options and their marketing and engineering rules- Improve part reuse and minimize feature proliferation with modular product definitions
- Reduce order returns or invalid orders
- Offer pre-configured variant products as bundled solutions rather than just products
- Package a full solution early in the concept phase rather than waiting for a customer order.
- Rapidly introduce a family of variant products to market using a logical product structure that allows the reduction in product diversity while still fulfilling market demands.
- Maximize the number of valid configurations available to the market.
- Increase design efficiency of complex configurable products.
- Optimize the design process of highly variant products by allowing design engineers to quickly create an EBOM.
- Maximize part reuse by controlling feature proliferation.
- Communicates product intent across product lines and process domains.
Product Portfolio DefinitionENOVIA Variant Configuration Central increases product definition integrity and design efficiency by establishing a master list of configurable options with usage rules for all process domains to adhere to. Each product line must adhere to the mandatory requirements and usage of the master option dictionary defined by Configuration Features and options. Seamless access to the master set of configuration features is available to CATIA and DELMIA for all process domains to adhere to. VPM users have direct access to a product’s option dictionary, as well as other types of effectivity definitions in ENOVIA Variant Configuration Central.
Product PlanningProduct lines can help product managers organize and manage the company’s portfolio of products. Product lines are product classifications that can be defined as a hierarchical product classification. Product lines can specify a library of mandatory features and with usage rules inherited by all products without compromising organization security.
Product Planning/Product EvolutionProduct managers plan the capabilities that each product must have in order to fulfill the needs of target markets and/or customers. Rules can be defined to constrain how capabilities are combined to ensure each variation of a product is valid from a market and technology perspective. Before development starts, product managers plan product releases (“product revisions”) that meet market demands and incorporate new technology improvements to stay competitive and respond to customer needs. With ENOVIA Variant Configuration Central, product managers innovate during the product planning activities by identifying the list of candidate features that need to be committed, planned, and developed for each product release. Product managers can manage concurrently parallel product releases within the same product/model.
Generic Product ArchitectureIncrease product revenue by supporting mass customization in products while facilitating the introduction of new products or quickly refresh existing products with new technology/design content using generic product architecture with 150% components. The generic product architecture is a multi-level all-inclusive BOM with all possible options from which a range of family of variants can be derived from. Advanced configuration tools help minimize feature proliferation and maximize the reuse of physical parts.
Configuration RulesStreamlines the capture, update, and management of the rules and processes necessary to accurately configure and manufacture buildable products. Easily define different kinds of rules at any level of the product structure. Mandatory rules can be defined at any level of the product hierarchy to enforce consistency and control the number of buildable combinations. Variant rules enable engineering to specify what components and subsystems can be configured in combination to create specific product variants. Simple and complex expressions are supported as well as a wide variety of rules, if-then, Boolean compatibility, resource rules, and variant inclusion rules for both products and parts.
Product ConfiguratorENOVIA Variant Configuration Central helps companies with highly configurable products meet market customization needs. Sales engineers can work alongside customers to collect the product customization requirements using a configurator interface. All standard and default option choices are highlighted for the user during the product configuration session. Engineers can use the product configurator for design analysis or feasibility improvements. In addition, system engineers can create partial configurations for further refinement by other functional groups.
BOM GenerationENOVIA Variant Configuration Central enables system engineers to define a generic variant product architecture that is used as a framework for generating different kinds of bill of materials (BOM). An engineering bill of materials (EBOM) can be generated based on a specific product configuration for Engineering to Order (ETO) business models. A Precise bill of materials (PBOM) is a flat list of parts based on a specific product configuration for build-to-order business models. During EBOM generation, engineers can preview the selected standard parts based on the selected configuration choices. Engineers can replace standard part selections with custom parts to satisfy custom order demands.
Configured Build ManagementAs product configurations are ordered, product planners and manufacturing planners need the ability to plan, and manage, the end-item builds for specific customers. Product planners can assign serial numbers, unit numbers, SKU numbers and manufacturing sequence numbers for each unit to track the manufacturing and delivery.
Issue Resolution and Change ManagementAs products enter into the development phase of their project, changes are inevitable but too many changes are cost prohibitive. A cross-functional change process helps system engineers manage and respond to feature changes systematically. ENOVIA Variant Configuration Central provides a choice of change management processes that provide immediate visibility to change requests while maintaining integrity of the original reported problem to the internal resolution.
Configuration Planning for Virtual ManufacturingWith highly configurable products, engineering must consider design alternatives for all product offerings and manufacturing engineers must ensure that product options can easily be manufactured at all manufacturing facilities available to them. Manufacturing planners can now define “Manufacturing Plans” as placeholders in ENOVIA to reference unique alternative process definitions in DELMIA®. Each ENOVIA ‘Manufacturing Plan’ represents a unique way to produce a product or a sub-system in DELMIA. Manufacturing planners can then apply configuration rules to logically select the proper DELMIA process plan based on configuration criteria. When used with ENOVIA® X-BOM Unit Tracking, the unit numbers (builds) can be associated to Manufacturing Plans for as-manufactured traceability.
Rich Application Programming InterfaceENOVIA Variant Configuration Central includes a rich API dictionary for downstream processes or to satisfy specific customer implementation requirements, such as sharing the master feature-option dictionary with multiple sales configurators or to satisfy custom reporting needs.
The Role of ENOVIA V6 and PLM 2.0ENOVIA Variant Configuration Central supports PLM 2.0, product lifecycle management online for everyone, and the ENOVIA V6 values, which are: Global collaborative innovation Single PLM platform for intellectual property (IP) management Online creation and collaboration, ready to use PLM business processes Lower cost of ownership.