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Arena Partners On Data-Driven Sourcing

Sourcing the right components is a critical part of the design process, especially for manufacturers of electronics and medical devices. Arena, a cloud-based product lifecycle management (PLM) vendor with deep roots in both those market segments, is partnering with a key vendor to address these challenges and bring a data-driven approach to product design and sourcing.

Arena is working with Paradata to integrate BOM Advantage, its artificial intelligence (AI) driven data quality platform, with the Arena PLM platform. While the products remain separate, the companies have developed a seamless integration between the two aimed at helping teams achieve real-time, verified insights into suppliers and parts in order to improve decision making, lower costs, and reduce risks.

Paradata’s offering provides verified data on electronic parts to streamline the sourcing process. The platform’s big data and machine learning capabilities ingest public and private data, providing instant updates on part and components costs, compliance issues, lead time and other vital go-to-market information essential for making optimal sourcing decisions. A recent Gartner survey of supply chain officers found that 80% of information required to make good design and sourcing decision about electronic parts resides outside of the company. As a result, it’s common for engineers and others involved in the product design process to pore over libraries of parts and Excel spreadsheets to inform their sourcing decisions—a process that often involves out-of-date, incomplete, or inaccurate data.

The Arena/Paradata integration enables real-time, verified insights into suppliers and parts. Image Courtesy of Arena

The limitations of available sourcing data open the door for serious issues to creep into product design and supply chain decisions, according to Steve Chalgren, Arena’s EVP, product development and chief strategy officer. “Customers are fire-fighting, scrambling to find parts and alternatives at the last minute, which forces delays in product production or costly re-designs,” Chalgren explains. “Data-driven product design and sourcing teams have a dynamic source of data that is constantly re-harvesting and being verified so that team members, from design to sourcing, can be confident that they are picking the right part, the first time.”

The Arena-Paradata BOM Advantage integration automatically transfers product record data from Arena to Paradata for fast analysis of the BOM. The Paradata platform provides a project-level view of the BOM, enabling procurement teams to quickly detect single sourcing, compliance, lifecycle, or availability issues. At the same time, Paradata’s PartRank function helps target alternative parts that are form, fit, and function equivalents so they can be tapped to solve those issues. There is also a Cost Comparison tool that lets users pull in the Arena BOM information to compare quotes and locate the optimum pricing.

Consider the story of one small customer that struggled to field a request from a retailer to ramp up production of its product from 50,000 units to 1 million units in time for the holiday season. Using Arena and Paradata BOM Advantage together, the customer was able to model a sourcing strategy in a few minutes as opposed to the several weeks it might have taken with traditional, manual processes, an Arena spokesperson said.

To get an in-depth look at the advantages of a tightly integrated Arena and Paradata, including the combined platform’s impact on sourcing decisions, watch the Arena webinar below.

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About Beth Stackpole

Beth Stackpole is a contributing editor to Digital Engineering. Send e-mail about this article to DE-Editors@digitaleng.news.

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