Product Data Management (PDM) system
In "Fuji Xerox Digital Work Way (FXDWW)," digital data such as 3D-CAD data are shared throughout all processes from product design to preparing for production. Based on the digital data, related departments cooperate with each other and clarify the basis of design and the basis of preparing for production during the "Virtual" phase prior to trial production.
Fuji Xerox built its Product Data Management (PDM) system to manage digital data that are subject to constant revision in line with design progress. The system is intended to seamlessly provide such data to every process from product design to preparing for production, and enable designers and engineers to access the latest information.
Designers store following design outputs into the PDM system: 3D-CAD data (parts data, assembly data), CAD data (drawing data), and property data. The PDM system offers a team design function (exclusive control), a data update function, and a data sharing function to manage such data.
The team design (exclusive control) function prevents the unintended overwriting of parts data (or assembly data) by restricting data changes to one person at a time.
The data update function automatically numbers the revisions of data, and thus helps determine the latest data. The data sharing function enables designers to refer to original CAD data when working on designs using existing CAD data. Work data (i.e. a copy of original CAD data saved on the PC of each designer) is linked to the original data. Therefore, each time the original data is changed, the designers are immediately notified of the update via the work data. In this way, designers always have access to the latest information.
With these three functions, the PDM system provides correct and the most updated information to designers and engineers.
Data managed by the PDM system are shared among the production preparation department, logistics department, the development divisions of oversea sites, and other relevant departments. As the latest design information is available with revision histories and relevant information even before drawings are completed, the members of relevant departments can concurrently work on product safety, make preparations for production, and perform procurement tasks by utilizing the data.
It is also possible to utilize design data (e.g. 3D CAD data) in the PDM system for studying cost reduction and preventing trouble by linking it with relevant data of the production preparation department and logistics department (e.g., parts quality data, cost data).