When surveyed for the The State of Fashion 2019 report, most executives had one word to describe the industry today: “changing.” Coming in at a close second and third were “digital” and “fast.”
These words reflect the context of uncertainty in which fashion has evolved over the last ten years, as well as the uneven path that lies ahead. Technology, more than anything else, has rewritten the rules, forcing companies to reconsider how they work if they hope to capture and keep the attention of today’s connected consumer.
Fashion companies are expected to surprise consumers with newness, personalization, immediacy, and proof of sustainability and traceability. This creates immense pressure to deliver more collections, but also to make those collections accountable to individual demands. Accomplishing this requires having the right information, complete control, visibility into the entire supply chain, and efficient teamwork. With the capacity to centralize, filter, and make use of product data in real-time, PLM systems have long been considered one of the go-to solutions for design and development teams. But what if this same collaborative premise could be extended to nearly the entire company? Imagine centralizing company-wide data, from past sales to present trends, from ideation to sourcing to retailing to legacy expertise, even reaching outside the walls to incorporate up-to-the-minute social media feedback from actual consumers. This is possible—technology has gone beyond product-focused PLM.
Traditional PLM systems are being revolutionized to help fashion companies harness consumer desires, capitalize on data, and achieve a new level of collaboration and in turn surpass their sales objectives. Here are five ways the next generation of PLM empowers companies to go further.