A Guide to PLM ERP Integration and Case Study

How do you ensure a successful PLM ERP Integration?

Organizations rely on numerous systems for success.  PLM might be your main system, but it isn't the only system critical to  your engineering value chain.  Because your data spans numerous systems, you need a solid solution for synchronization across all domains.  The "plug and play" method of connecting systems may be well known, but in reality it is far from effective.  As products become increasingly complex, integrations become increasingly difficult.  Your organization may have completely customized PLM, in which case you will need to integrate numerous components.

Today's engineering environment relies on an integrated product landscape,meaning that managing complexity is your greatest challenge in product development.  With PLM ERP integration, your product lifecycle must be in sync through:

PLM to ERP

  • PLM to ERP engineering part and BOM structures
  • PLM to ERP manufacturing part and BOM structures
  • PLM to ERP engineering change
  • PLM design record to ERP
  • PLM planning and documentation

​ERP to PLM

  • ERP to PLM cost visibility
  • ERP to PLM process synchronization
  • ERP to PLM manufacturing change
  • ERP to PLM vendor / supplier information
  • ERP to PLM support / manufacturing part and BOM structures

PLM ERP Integration Case Study

Disclaimer: Customer name withheld for privacy.

The Challenge:

A customer came to PROSTEP with the desire to integrate a cloud based PLM with their ERP.  This particular customer develops and markets computer aided measurements and imaging devices and software.  PROSTEP's task was to populate and synchronize the necessary data, including material masters, change masters, BOM and effectivities.   The customer also required reports and email notifications for traceability and confirmation.

The Solution:

Using PROSTEP's OpenPDM base, OpenPDM SAP connector and workflows and triggers, PROSTEP was able to establish a solution to integrate the cloud PLM with ERP.  OpenPDM allowed for on-demand synchronization, a uni-directional flow from the PLM to ERP and support for the material master and BOM creation.

ARENA PLM and SAP ERP Integration Demo


Here is the Engineering Change Order with Arena PLM and Integration with SAP Workflow

  • 00:00:05
    • Create an engineering change order with ARENA PLM.  Note that you have three materials in an unreleased state.
  • 00:00:55
    • Verify that these materials are not located in SAP.
  • 00:01:35
    • Create an engineering change order to move the materials into production.
    • ARENA PLM shows you the tab used to create the change.
    • The process to create a change includes adding a title and a description to the ECO.
    • After you create the change order, you will attach the materials to the change.
  • 00:03:13
    • Materials are added to the change order – ECO-000044.
    • Your changes are submitted for approval.
  • 00:03:45
    • The changes will need to be approved by your designated approver.
  • 00:04:40
    • After the changes are made, your SAP should reflect the changes.
    • PROSTEP OpenPDM ARENA SAP integration connector makes this happen.
  • 00:05:25
    • The green light on OpenPDM’s interface indicates the SAP integration connector is connected.
    • Create a new activity in OpenPDM to pull data from ARENA ERP Exchange and import the necessary information into SAP.
    • This is a manual trigger of import.  OpenPDM allows for scheduled import.
  • 00:05:55
    • The export/import process begins.
    • OpenPDM pulls ARENA information and imports the materials into SAP.
  • 00:06:24
    • After successful transfer into SAP, you notice the materials are created in SAP.
  • 00:06:43
    • You can verify that these materials were successfully imported in SAP
  • 00:07:43
    • Your change order ECO-000044 was released to SAP.
  • 00:08:05
    • You can verify that the parts are in SAP
  • 00:09:10
    • The changes are reflected in ARENA change master.
  • 00:10:10
    • The changes are reflected in ARENA BOM.

About ARENA PLM SAP ERP Integration

PROSTEP's OpenPDM connector for ARENA PLM and SAP integration uses ARENA ERP Exchange to automate the transfer of released product record information from Arena to SAP.  

The integration validates data changes before importing them to SAP.  An audit trail records success and failure for product data and change order transfers.  You can monitor changes and the success of the product record transfers through the Arena dashboard.

ARENA PLM Integration with SAP ERP

​Read more about PROSTEP's PLM SAP ERP Integration here.

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Tel: +1​ 248​ 247​ 1007

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