Every business requires an efficient product management tool that is able to fulfil the product delivery needs and requirements. Ever since the inception of human being, services are being provided to earn a living. Some businesses offer services like helping people do their daily chores, or by providing a cab services. Whereas some services are product-based like television manufacturers, furniture shops, mobile shops, etc. The product-based companies and businesses, in order to ensure seamless process of product manufacturing and delivery require an automated procedure to streamline the product lifecycle management (PLM). A typical product management or a PLM software comes equipped with various features such as collaboration and reporting, workflow and change management, risk management, project management, business intelligence, quality management, bill of materials (BOM) management, and supplier collaboration.
In this context, we shall look into the best Product Management or PLM software that are free, open-source, and cross-platform compatible.
Core features of product lifecycle management software includes:
- Collaboration and Reporting- Users can make better business decisions with the tools that provide reporting and collaboration capability.
- Workflow and change Management- The users can keep the projects on track with this functionality.
- Risk Management- Users can manage, report, and lessen the instabilities by employing this feature.
- Project Management- In real-time, users can manage product development, track, and schedule capabilities.
- Manufacturing Product Management- By tracking the project progress, the users can have greater insight into the product record. It helps in better resource management and allocation.
- Computer-aided Design Management- The CAD activities simplify the process of tracking data, mobile documentation, and product lifecycle analytics
- Business Intelligence- Users can access updated reports and charts that are surrounded by the product data.
- Quality Management – Cross-departmental product quality process can be coordinated and tracked by this feature.
- Bill of Materials (BOM) Management- In the company, the users can track, share, and visualize data across the teams.
- Supplier Collaboration- The PLM tools allow management of the audits and help in searching for the perfect supplier for the product.
- Change Management- The user can plan, execute, and analyze the changes related to the design of the product.
1. Apache OFBiz
Apache OFBiz is another business management software that offers free subscription and an open-source environment. The suite is also cross-platform compatible thereby offering its wide range of features and capabilities across all the leading platforms. Apache OfBiz offers an efficient business suite that incorates applications, features and tools dealing with customer relationship management (CRM), enterprise resource planning (ERP), an accounting software, MRP, and product management platforms. Apache OfBiz is a suite that is equipped with features and functionalities that can be required in any business. The suite offers market leading PLM and material requirements planning (MRP) features and capabilities. Being an open-source solution and a fully integrated office suite, the platform is well-reputed and equally acclaimed in the software development community and the business community as the developers can acquire it and tweak it according to their preferences, whereas the business community can simply get benefit from the brilliant platform.
Get it now from https://ofbiz.apache.org/business-users.html#UsrInstall
With its initial release in 2005, Odoo is the software that is taking the market by storm. In current times, Odoo is the leading and most aggressively and actively improving Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP), CRM, and a PLM software. The software comes under the GNU General Public License and offers a list of features. To list a few PLM features such as MRP, smart versioning, manage engineering changes, integrated scalability, productivity tools, real-time communication, great user interface, bill of materials, collaboration, workflow management, reporting and analytics, quote process management, maintenance operations, quality management, manufacturing management, integrated document management, and the list goes on.
Get it now from https://www.odoo.com/page/download
OpenPLM is a free, open-source, and cross-platform compatible software. The software comes equipped with state-of-the-art PLM features and is a favorite of many across the globe. The key features incorporated in the tool are third-party integrations and plugins ensuring enhancements, such as plugins available for Google Docs, Openoffice, Freecad, ability of the platform to produce spontaneous bill of materials, parts and documents management, get benefit from the efficient administrator features, manufacturing management, maintenance operations, user management, quote process management, regulation and governance, collaboration, full web Interface, BOM (bill of materials), quality management, etc. The efficient tool comes under the General Public License (GPL) and is flexible to integrate various third-party extensions for modifications and enhancements.
Get it now from http://www.openplm.org/trac/downloads
4. Aras Innovator
Aras Innovator is a product of Aras Corporation which is a US based company. The solution offers market-leading PLM features and functionalities and is available for open download. The efficient, free, open-source, and cross-platform compatible solution comes equipped with features such as new product development and introduction, document management, product costing, change management, multi-CAD feature offering seamless visualization along with data management, project portfolio, enterprise capabilities, adaptable business processes, cross-discipline product structure, bill of materials (BOM), model-based service-oriented architecture, quality compliance, complete PLM suite, advanced product quality planning (APQP),etc.
Get it now from https://www.aras.com/en/support/download-innovator
OpenBOM is another free, open-source, and a software that is compatible with almost all of the leading operating systems. The software however offers the free subscription for only a personal or a single user account, though the enterprises and businesses can acquire a paid subscription that best matches their user requirements. The features incorporated in the tool are real-time collaboration, manage production planning, BOM management and integrations, ability to manage product orders and vendors, track BOM change history, data management and the list goes on.
Get it now by first signing up at https://bom.openbom.com/sign-up
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This article covers the best product lifecycle management (PLM) or simply, the product management software. The listed software are Apache OfBiz, Ofoo, OpenPLM, Aras Innovator, and OpenBOM. The listed offer efficient and most market competitive features and capabilities along with offering free subscriptions, open-source development, and are cross-platform compatible. There are also other famous and efficient PLM software but none of them are equipped with free subscriptions, or are open-source, and cross-platform compatible along with providing state-of-the-art features and capabilities all in one.