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October 27th, 2020     4 MIN READ

5 Ways Outdoor Brands can Outperform the Competition with PLM

Following months of lockdown restrictions around the globe due to the coronavirus pandemic, there has never been such an appetite for consumers to get out of their homes and into ‘the great outdoors’ to practice sports! This means consumers need more products that allow them to live more active and healthier lives. 

Traditional sportswear and outdoor product lifecycles take too long to facilitate innovation and quality control while satisfying a constant and increasing desire for new products. Therefore, brands in these categories must modernize their approach to operate at maximum efficiency and gain full visibility and control of each and every product. 

Discover how to get ahead of the competition by reading our top 5 reasons why Centric Product Lifecycle Management (PLM) can help you lead the race.

1. Streamline processes

When your products have to reach increasingly high standards of design, quality control AND speed to market in today’s volatile market, it may not always be possible to pull in more resources, so why not optimise the resources you already have? 

PLM helps you do just this, saving time and maximizing resources by streamlining all your product-related data into one easy-to-use solution, eliminating time spent searching for information, cleaning up manual errors and reducing the number of meetings required. This extra time means everyone can focus on value-added tasks, such as creating technically refined, functional products. 

Centric customer Helly Hansen was struggling to keep its processes in line with its rapid growth, but since adopting Centric PLM, “people are able to do a more thorough job, create more products and improve quality oversight”, says Helly Hansen Process and Quality Manager, Ferdinand Diener.

2. Meet compliance standards

You know it’s crucial for your company’s reputation and legal liability that your products meet compliance guidelines. But, did you know that with a modern PLM solution, you can set requirement benchmarks so each product meets the necessary standards? You can factor in different international standards, and when external checks are performed, all the information required is right in front of you. No more double guessing!

3. Accelerate decision-making during product development

Developing products that tick all the boxes when it comes to function, style, quality and price, requires a transparent process that helps you to make decisions to optimize products along the way. And PLM provides just that! Since adopting Centric’s Outdoor PLM Solution, outdoor brand Deuter, leading German producer of backpacks, sleeping bags and outdoor accessories, now knows much more about all the materials it uses, enabling the company to see everything it needs in one place in order to develop and approve the product for production.  

Effective product testing is another important part of product development, so Centric developed the Field Testing mobile app that enables sportswear and outdoor brands such as On Running to test the performance of products in real-time, receiving fast and accurate feedback in order to improve and refine products before they hit the market.

4. Improve collaboration

If there is anything we can learn from this current crisis, it is that cloud-based digital collaboration solutions have become enablers for business continuity, enabling companies to streamline communication with other departments and suppliers around the world, even with travel restrictions in place. 

Communicating by email and phone can often result in endless back and forth messages, with a high chance of errors occurring, however, when everyone is connected through PLM, product information is centrally accessible in one location and updated in real-time to give all users a ‘single source of the truth’. Better internal and external collaboration has concrete results: for instance, outdoor brand Klim streamlined communication with their factories using Centric PLM and reduced sample lead time by 25%.

5. Speed up time to market

When you’ve got a great product and the price and quality fit the bill, PLM helps you get the right products to market faster so you can stay ahead of your competition. Robust calendar planning capabilities and enhanced transparency at each stage of the product lifecycle means that product launches are less likely to slip behind schedule and bottlenecks can be flagged and addressed in good time. Since adopting Centric Manufacturing PLM, Centric customer VT Garment now cuts time to market by 20%.

Race ahead of the field!

While many things remain uncertain in post-pandemic times, one thing’s for sure — there has never been a better time for outdoor and sportswear brands to discover how digital innovations are changing the game. 

So, if you are a sportswear or outdoor brand, join leading companies such as ASICS, Carhartt and Helsport on an exciting Centric PLM journey that will give your business a competitive edge. 

Request a demo today!

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