By Amy Castor (for PTC)
It began with a vision of manufacturing companies using the Internet to work with their customers to design products. An architect enters a portal on the web looking for elevators for a new high-rise hotel. Each elevator needs to fit building specs, carry fifteen people, and have one side made of glass.
The vendor configures the elevators from a combination of new and existing parts, generates the new product designs, and assembles and delivers the elevators in record time—even though the customer is a continent away.
Design and manufacturing quality are flawless. Long-term maintenance success is assured because every part has a full audit trail back to the original engineering databases. And purchase price is competitive because these elevators benefit from manufacturing synergies created by an integrated, informed supply chain.