When it’s time to select the right product life cycle management (PLM) software to assist your business, there are a number of different variables you’ll want to consider. High on this list is how easy the PLM will be for your staff members to utilize. What else should you consider while looking for the very best PLM for your apparel business? Read on to find out!
Factors to Consider When Choosing PLM Software
Here’s where the rubber meets the road—you know you need PLM software, but there are so many different types of it available. To make this process easier, sit down and write out a list. Be sure to include:
- Ease of use
- Tech packs
- Cost of implementation
- Automation and integration
- Manufacturer’s onboarding
You must make each of these points a priority. After all, what good will PLM software do if it has fantastic reporting and security but is so difficult to use that your staff refuses to use it? Or, on the opposite side, what if it’s easy to use, but everything else is a mess?
When you’re looking at your options, be sure to think of things from the perspective of your average employee. Don’t consider your smartest workers, as they’ll pick it up quickly. Instead, try to figure out how far your average employee can take each particular PLM software—with basic training, of course—before they run into serious issues.
Remember: if your staff struggles with the software, they’ll be less likely to use it properly, if at all.
Scalability and Customization Options
Once you’ve found some PLM software that your employees can use, you’ll want to look at what type of scalability and customization options there are. Unless you want your business to stay at exactly the same pace, which is quite unadvisable.
The first thing you’ll want to know is how much wiggle room the software provides for scalability. Some versions of PLM software will allow you to scale up from selling a small number of items to basically turning into Amazon. While you may not need that much scalability, it will be important to look toward the future when you select your PLM.
Another thing that will help your company a lot is the option to customize your PLM software. For instance, are you able to utilize custom categories that were put into the software specifically for your business? Or do you have to stick within preset parameters? As with most things in life, if you’ve got the ability to use customizations, you’re going to get better results.
Integration Capabilities and Ease of Use
As previously mentioned, ease of use should be the number one thing you’re looking for in PLM software. After all, if people can’t use the software because it’s too hard to figure out, you’re going to have a seriously uphill battle with your employees. Although the PLM you choose may not be the easiest of the bunch, it needs to be simple enough for everyone to figure out.
The next thing you’ll want to look at is whether it offers integration capabilities with your preferred providers. A good example of this can be found with N41’s software integrations, which include:
- Magneto 2
- Fashion Go
- Wells Fargo
Having the ability to integrate these services can help make the software easier to use, too!
Support Services and Vendor Considerations
Before you definitively decide on what PLM software vendor you’re going to use, be sure to ask a few specific questions. You want to know:
- Which customers are using their platform?
- Do they offer out-of-the-box functionality?
- Do they have a long history of providing PLM to your specific industry?
Always keep in mind that any vendors who don’t have a long and proven history should be viewed through a very critical lens. The last thing you want to do is adopt specific PLM software only to have the vendor behind it go out of business in six months.
Additionally, you’ll want to learn more about the PLM software’s support services. Who can you contact if you have any issues? And how responsive are they? If you need to reach out more than once to get assistance, there are good odds that they’re not the PLM software company for you.
Choose N41’s Proven Software Solutions
When you consider all the variables, N41 comes out on top every single time. That’s because we’ve got 16+ years of experience, more than 160 clients, and an astounding 99% retention rate! In other words, when you compare N41 to other, newer companies, you’ll quickly find out how much our experience matters.
Other nice features of N41’s software are that it’s very simple to use, has great security features and reporting options, and has plenty of useful integrations! To learn more, sign up for our free ERP demo and learn for yourself why N41 is the way to go.