IDC Retail Insights Evaluates Product Life-Cycle Management Applications in New IDC MarketScape Report

Framingham, MA – August 29, 2012 – A new IDC MarketScape report from IDC Retail Insights finds that product life-cycle management (PLM) has evolved to become a central lynchpin for retailers to conduct customer-centric, efficient and effective brand management. The new study, IDC MarketScape: Worldwide Retail Product Life-Cycle Management (PLM) Applications 2012 Vendor Assessment (Document # GRI236445),examines the impact of retail PLM and its ability to improve return on capital and brand equity, while reducing risk. Vendors evaluated in this report include: Centric Software, Core Solutions, Dassault Systemes, Gerber, Lectra, NGC, PTC, SAP, Siemens and TradeStone Software.

IDC Retail Insights' research shows that as retailers continue to focus on performance improvements, a broad spectrum of product lifecycle management capabilities from product conception to order receipt can help; especially with private label brands. Retail PLM allows retailers to harmonize decisions at each step of the product life cycle, resulting in more profitable product launches, fewer product failures, and more business success. As a result, PLM has shifted from merely enabling improved technical specification, sampling and sourcing management processes to enabling faster innovation and product cycle times, with improved regulatory compliance and reduced costs.

“PLM empowers employees to do what they do best and return to their core competencies — designers can design products, supply chain managers can optimize a well-orchestrated and instrumented supply network, and merchants can optimize assortments, efficiently buying and selling products,” said Leslie Hand, Research Director for IDC Retail Insights. “By enabling collaboration up and down the supply chain retailers can not only reduce the cost of doing business, but improve performance for all supply chain partners. Importantly, with retail PLM the retailer can develop "fashion" products closer to customer demand, enabling fresh and inviting assortments, that improve customer loyalty and sales.”

Vendors that serve this space range from those that have long histories in PLM and CAD to those that have emerged specifically to serve retail product lifecycle management (PLM) needs. Regardless of heritage, PLM providers have increased retail specific R&D over the last several years. As a result, many best practices have emerged including establishing a common data repository, facilitating collaborative innovation, calendar management and workflow control, automated collaborative sourcing processes, and close attention to regulations and product, vendor, and factory compliance and performance.

IDC MarketScape criteria selection, weightings, and vendor scores represent well-researched IDC judgment about the market and specific vendors. IDC analysts tailor the range of standard characteristics by which vendors are measured through structured discussions, surveys, and interviews with market leaders, participants and end users. Market weightings are based on user interviews, buyer surveys and the input of a review board of IDC experts in each market. IDC analysts base individual vendor scores, and ultimately vendor positions within the IDC MarketScape, on detailed surveys and interviews with the vendors, publicly available information and end-user experiences in an effort to provide an accurate and consistent assessment of each vendor's characteristics, behavior and capability.

For additional information about this study, or to arrange a one-on-one briefing with Leslie Hand please contact Julie Crotty at 978-877-0053 or Julie@attunecommunications.com. Reports are available to qualified members of the media. For information on purchasing reports, contact insights@idc.com; reporters should email sarahbethmurray@gmail.com

About IDC MarketScapes

IDC MarketScape vendor analysis model is designed to provide an overview of the competitive fitness of ICT (information and communications technology) suppliers in a given market. The research methodology utilizes a rigorous scoring methodology based on both qualitative and quantitative criteria that results in a single graphical illustration of each vendor’s position within a given market. IDC MarketScape provides a clear framework in which the product and service offerings, capabilities and strategies, and current and future market success factors of IT and telecommunications vendors can be meaningfully compared. The framework also provides technology buyers with a 360-degree assessment of the strengths and weaknesses of current and prospective vendors.

About IDC Retail Insights

IDC Retail Insights assists retail businesses and IT leaders, as well as the suppliers who serve them, in making more effective technology decisions by providing accurate, timely, and insightful fact-based research and consulting services. Staffed by senior analysts with decades of industry experience, our global research analyzes and advises on business and technology issues facing the retail industry. International Data Corporation (IDC) is the premier global provider of market intelligence, advisory services, and events for the information technology market. IDC is a subsidiary of IDG, the world’s leading technology, media, research, and events company. For more information, please visit www.idc-ri.com, email info@idc-ri.com, or call 508-935-4490. Visit the IDC Retail Insights Community at http://idc-insights-community.com/retail.