Separation Anxiety, or Why You Need to Integrate Your Processes

The road to product launch can be bumpy, and, with all the fast-moving parts involved in development, simple alignment won’t do. You and your organization must be in sync, must be integrated, must be a well-oiled machine. From ideation to launch, teams that can leverage integration to manage their operations will increase their chances for a smooth, successful delivery. 

Too often, however, key development processes are separated from each other, causing them to fall out of sync and building communication and information barriers between teams. When data, people and processes are walled off like this, mistakes become much harder to catch, or even see, which can compound as the life cycle progresses and impact your business as a whole. A small, overlooked error at the beginning of the design phase, for example, can transform into catastrophe by the time it gets to manufacturing; or worse, when your faulty product is already in the hands of consumers. When that happens, expect bad press, loss of revenue, and a steep drop in consumer trust, but it can sometimes take on a much wider, more disastrous scope. 

Within weeks of Samsung launching their Galaxy Note 7 phone – whose defective batteries were found to spontaneously catch fire – 2.5 million units were recalled and production stopped entirely. A class action suit which covered burn victims and property damage quickly followed. Because of undercooked ERP solutions that lacked proper integration, small process errors littered throughout the Galaxy’s life cycle had remained invisible, compounded in the lead-up to manufacturing, and then literally blew up following launch. Lacking a truly integrated solution, Samsung paid a steep price for keeping their key processes separated.

Failures like this can also result in shareholders’ loss in faith of your organization. Take the example of Revlon: after the cosmetics leader acquired Elizabeth Arden, Inc., in 2016, it was supposed to be a jewel in an otherwise full crown. Instead, undercooked ERP solutions caused massive integration problems that disrupted everything from manufacturing to customer service, resulting in millions of dollars of lost sales that crashed Revlon stock so badly they were sued by their own shareholders. Lacking proper integration, Arden paid a steep price for keeping their key processes separated.

The road to launch can be bumpy indeed, but integration paves the way for a smooth product life cycle by helping to prevent errors, accidents and, in some cases, financial disaster.

The Complete Package 

To truly sync teams, break down process barriers and help prevent disasters, big and small, integration needs to be seamless, versatile and comprehensive. 

With Upchain’s out-of-the-box configurations, you can map, merge and manage your existing business process in seconds, giving you immediate integration and visibility. And with more integrations than any other PLM platform, your teams can continue using the same tools they’re most comfortable with, saving you not just new training costs but the errors that come with it. Whether seamless integration with Microsoft and Google Suite, or a host of multi-CAD integrations that lets you pull in data from multiple CAD systems, functionality and best practices won’t be sacrificed. Want to go it alone? Not a problem, because with open APIs, you can set up your own integrations tailored to your team’s needs. 

Upchain will connect any business program to your business process, so you’re never without the data you need to make sure development is running smoothly. By integrating key processes and letting communication flourish, no aspect of a project is lost or broken throughout development.

Collaboration is Key

Teamwork is at the heart of product development, and integration makes for a better, more synchronized collaborative process that is resistant to error. With Upchain’s cloud-based integrations, every stakeholder on the development team is connected to and working from the same underlying data, completely secure and updated in real time. With no process barriers in the way, teams can easily create, manage and share product data, and then make it accessible to anyone, anywhere at any time. Integration means team communication never stops flowing – everyone is always in touch and up to speed, and no one is working off old data. And when you facilitate collaboration, it’s easier for everyone to spot potential errors and roadblocks at every stage of the development process.

Upchain’s PLM platform allows your teams to stay connected – to each other, to their data, to you – and keep the development process moving swiftly, and error-free.

Upchain: Along for the ride

As the entire product life cycle becomes more complex, the stakes have never been higher to remove the barriers to communication and information flow. Organizations that continue to separate key processes of product development will inevitably suffer setbacks. Whether minor errors or major disasters, wilful blindness can negatively impact their business as a whole. 

Catch errors before they catch you: Upchain gives you the integration you need so that communication is never lost, disasters are averted and your team functions like the well-oiled machine it was always meant to be. 

The road to launch has always been bumpy, but Upchain has smoothed out that road.

To learn how Upchain can pave the way for a smooth product life cycle, please visit our website and request a demo