The pace of technological advances is fueling digital transformation. Companies that are unable to adapt to this digital transformation and be up-to-date with the latest evolving technologies will face serious consequences and may even vanish in the near future. This trend is known as Digital Darwinism, which is seen as a significant threat.
On this context, Siemens PLM Software had recently organised the Industry Analyst Conference from September 6–9, 2016, at Boston, Massachusetts, USA. Dr Horst J Kayser, Chief Strategy Officer, Siemens AG, gave an update on the company’s digitalisation strategy and the execution of their stated goals in his opening keynote. Thereafter, Siemens executives presented the current status and future roadmaps of their technologies and solutions for buildings, energy management and industrial markets. Siemens customers shared best practices and lessons learned on their digital transformation journeys and how the company is helping them to succeed. A keynote was also given by Chuck Grindstaff, Global CEO, Siemens PLM Software, where he spoke on how digitalisation is everywhere today and has become the reason for driving new business models and new operating models.
Sharing some grim statistics, Grindstaff said that more than 50% of the companies that attempt to move to a digital model will fail and added that 40% of today’s Fortune 500 companies could vanish within a decade. He further cited some of the reasons as to why these companies would fail. These reasons include digital as not being central to their corporate strategy, companies investing in the latest ‘silo’d’ digital technologies and failing to work horizontally, perceiving digital as a back office strategy, aimed purely at operational efficiency and thinking ‘digitisation’ but not ‘digitalisation’.
In order to achieve digitalisation and cause business transformation, Grindstaff stated, “To survive disruption and thrive in the digital era, incumbents need to become digital enterprises, rethinking every element of their business. Companies can embrace transformational change by monetising innovation and capitalising on disruption.”
Leveraging forces in innovation
Ideation, realisation and utilisation are the forces used to leverage the innovation process. “Siemens offers solutions across this entire value chain. The first stage of ideation includes product design, which then goes for production planning. This marks the second stage of realisation, which includes production engineering after which production execution is implemented. The third stage is utilisation, which includes service. Through this chain of stages, digitalisation collapses the innovation lifecycle and enables continuous business transformation,” he explained.
The ideation stage accurately represents what is real and simulates what is possible. “Some of the highlights of this stage include ALM PLM, Simcenter and convergent modeling. The Integrated ALM PLM with Polarion is unique in that its focus is on unlocking synergies by providing full traceability, real-time collaboration and an intuitive UI,” he elaborated.
“Another important tool is the ideation phase,” shared Grindtsaff. It is the performance digital twin that helps with market and customer insight. “Digital twins at every step are connected through a digital thread and Siemens has established their foundation in this regard with the smart innovation portfolio, which focuses on four aspects – adaptive system, engaged users, intelligent models and realised products,” he further emphasised.
Predictive Engineering Analytics
Predictive Engineering Analytics is the application of multi-discipline simulation and test, combined with intelligent reporting and data analytics, to develop digital twins that can predict the behaviour of products across all performance attributes, throughout the product lifecycle. “It includes both the tactics and tools that manufacturers can leverage to evolve traditional design verification and validation into a predictive role in support of System Driven Product Development. The ultimate goal of implementing a predictive engineering analytics strategy is to deliver innovations for complex products faster and with greater confidence,” added Grindstaff.
By implementing a predictive engineering analytics strategy, engineering organisations will be able to deliver multi-fidelity digital twins – simulation and test models – that are as close to reality as possible for each stage of the development process. They will also cover all the critical system performance characteristics, which are to be addressed by integrating different simulation disciplines and physics.
Introducing Simcenter portfolio
Grindstaff further emphasised the need for engineering departments today to develop smart products that integrate mechanical functions with electronics and controls, utilise new materials and manufacturing methods, and deliver new designs within ever shorter design cycles. This requires current engineering practices for product performance verification to evolve into a more predictive role for systems driven product development.
“The Simcenter software from Siemens PLM Software uniquely combines system simulation, 3D CAE, and test to help companies predict performance across all critical attributes earlier and throughout the entire product lifecycle. By combining physics-based simulations with insights gained from data analytics, Simcenter helps optimise design and deliver innovations faster,” he added.
Driving the digital enterprise
The second presentation was given by Dr Jan Mrosik, CEO – Digital Factory Division, Siemens AG. He shared his insights on how customers have four essential requirements throughout the manufacturing sector. These include speed, flexibility, quality, efficiency and security. He also elaborated on the holistic approach adopted by Siemens offerings, such as Teamcenter and digital twin that allow integrating technical domains into one data model and publish the optimised digital twin to all stakeholders, including suppliers, with the collaboration platform, Teamcenter.
He further shared that using these integrated technologies, Maserati was able to reduce development time considerably, while increasing production output. Ford Motor Company was another example cited by him, which reduced its development time and energy costs, while increasing quality, using Siemens’ integrated technologies. “Thus, integrating and digitalising the entire value chain is key to staying competitive in the future,” he said.
The subsequent presentation was given by Tony Hemmelgarn, Executive Vice President, GSM&S, who spoke on making the value of digitalisation real. He emphasised that digitalisation does not just mean selling software, but creating transformation by providing solutions for new business imperatives. “We are driving transformation across the innovation process and are offering customers insights to solve business problems in ways they haven’t considered,” he shared. This includes solutions, such as automated design optimisation, application lifecycle management and convergent modeling, to name a few, which not only expand the digital enterprise portfolio, but also transform businesses of customers.
Product performance intelligence
Then, the event witnessed a presentation from Jim Rusk, Senior Vice President & Chief Technology Officer, Siemens PLM Software. He indulged in a detailed, technical discussion of the Siemens Smart Innovation Portfolio and elaborated on product performance intelligence, which helps in bridging the gap between what companies think their products do and what customers experience with the product. He further added that with the Product Performance Intelligence, companies would be able to leverage Big Data to transform business, search and analyse contextualised Big Data in seconds, discover insights not possible using traditional Business Intelligence (BI) and provide cloud-based, software-as-a-service (SaaS) solution platform.
The next presentation was given by Eric Sterling, Senior Vice President — Lifecycle Collaboration Software, Siemens. He spoke on enabling the digital enterprise with the Siemens collaboration backbone. The final presentation of Day 1 was given by Joe Bohman, Vice President — Product Engineering Software, Siemens PLM Software, Jan Leuridan, Senior Vice President — Simulation and Test Solutions, Siemens PLM Software, Jean-Claude Ercolanelli, Senior Vice President — Product Management, CD-adapco and Paul Bevan, Senior Marketing Representative, Siemens PLM Software, who discussed transforming the ideation process using the latest Siemens offerings.
Industry path forward
The highlights of Day 2 of the conference kicked off with a presentation by Steve Bashada, Senior Vice President — Cloud Services, Siemens PLM Software and Dave Mitchell, CTO, Cloud Services, Siemens PLM Software. They discussed business-ready cloud solutions and the technological forces that are transforming the digital enterprise. They also emphasised on leveraging Big Data to transform business and stated that doing this will help gain greater visibility into product and supply chain performance, help identify supplier quality issues and prevent costly recalls, improve customer experience by spotting emerging trends, speed time to problem resolution and leverage-proven industry expertise and partners.
The event witnessed its next presentation by John Miller, Senior Vice President — Mainstream Engineering, Siemens PLM Software. He elaborated on the challenges of digital transformation and opportunities for small and medium-sized businesses. He recognised the SMB sector as an important segment with unique needs and constraints and credited the best SMBs for driving innovation and disruption. He also expanded on the smart innovation portfolio and elaborated on its unique features of engaged users, adaptive system, intelligent models and realised products. Additionally, he evaluated the Siemens PLM Software and its products, which add flexibility, value and choice for its customers.
The final presentation was given by Kirk Gutmann, Senior Vice President — Industries, Siemens, who spoke at length about the industry path forward. “The line between digital and physical can be blurred by extending the digital twin with disruptive technologies and deliver superior time to value through pre-configured solution catalysts. Also, extend and accelerate industry solutions by leveraging global advantage services delivery capability and address the real challenges customers face through deep, process-centric solutions built on best practices. Finally, expand solution partnerships, especially in emerging PLM industries, where we see growth and leverage catalysts and transition to the cloud to address changing market needs,” he concluded.