Rethinking Enterprise Software to Deliver on the Promise of PLM The Fashion Lifecycle Doesn’t End with Sample Approval,Why Should PLM?

To build lasting success, today’s fashion and softgoods companies must work faster and more efficiently than ever before. Perhaps more so than in any other industry, time, cost, and other competitive pressures leave little room for guesswork and mistakes. Whether they source products from full-package providers or take a more hands-on approach to manufacturing, most recognize that the design, product development, and sourcing processes represent the greatest opportunity for business improvements. Not only do these activities account for a major percentage of overall cycle times, it is also when key decisions are made that dictate the vast majority of costs and eventual sales performance of their products. These and other factors have driven companies to integrate these tasks and foster greater collaboration among teams and vendors that participate in these mission-critical activities. Increasingly, small and large businesses alike have turned to Product LifecycleManagement (PLM) software to reduce cycle times and increase control over the historically unstructured product development process. Some of these companies began their quest decades ago by implementing Product Data Management (PDM) software, which later gave way to the promise of the more comprehensive PLM solution. But after making significant investments in time and money in “best-of-breed” PLM systems, few retailers and brands have actually realized their goal of a single, integrated system capable of managing the complete fashion product lifecycle. While it is clear that PLM has brought significant improvements and value to the development process, the promise of integrated merchandise planning, design, sourcing and production capabilities has advanced rather slowly and remains largely unmet. This disconnect is due, in large part, to the reality that independent PLM vendors must either develop much of these capabilities from scratch or rely on integration partners to bridge the gap. Many of these vendors lack needed experience in transactional processes like rawmaterials purchasing and finished goods tracking. Even the largest multi-industry PLM providers find the development of effective merchandise planning, sourcing, and other tools suitable for the fashion industry time consuming and difficult. While integration of supply chain, ERP, and other systems with PLM can make information more accessible across the enterprise, the costs and maintenance of this integration can present challenges for many fashion companies. Even after investing in the integration, troublesome functional and visibility gaps often still remain in the business process. Realigning SystemCapabilities to Changing Industry Needs To avoid these pitfalls and achieve a more effective solution, a fast-growing number of companies are turning to a new breed of enterprise software that combines PLM with capabilities more traditionally resident in the ERP system to deliver a wide-range of design, development, sourcing, and manufacturing capabilities aligned specifically with the requirements of the fashion and softgoods industry. As a case in point, sleepwear, intimates, and childrenswear wholesaler Komar, Inc. is working with Computer Generated Solutions to implement the BlueCherry ® Design&Sourcing Suite across its portfolio of nearly 100 lifestyle brands and licenses. In addition to leveraging the more traditional product development capabilities of the system, the NewYork-based company also uses the system to support a network of factories in fourteen different countries. Looking to move beyond traditional systems integration strategies, other companies are also finding that this newly redefined approach can vastly extend the capabilities of PLM to provide greater control over raw materials and finished goods sourcing, testing compliance, quality assurance, and other key business activities. Of special interest to many is the ability to leverage web-based PLM tools to generate and manage CPSIA, General Certificate of Conformity (GCC), and other required compliance documentation. Quality

To learn more about how BlueCherry ® can help, contact your BlueCherry ® sales representative at 212-408-3809 or email us at You can also visit us at For over 30 years, CGS has enabled global enterprises, regional companies and gov- ernment agencies to drive breakthrough performance through business applica- tions, enterprise learning and outsourcing services. CGS is wholly focused on creating comprehensive solutions that meet clients’ complex, multi-dimensional needs and support clients’ most fundamental business activities. Headquartered in New York City, CGS employs more than 5,200 professionals across North America, Latin America, Europe and Asia. For more information, please visit Computer Generated Solutions, Inc.

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