MEM 490: Product Lifecycle Management



This is a one (1) unit course.

Product Lifecycle Management (PLM) is the comprehensive oversight of new products, from concept to retirement. It is a multi-disciplinary approach that ensures that product quality, customer satisfaction, profitability, and corporate social responsibility are optimized throughout each aspect of the product lifecycle – product definition, development, launch, production and retirement. Effective Product Lifecycle Management encompasses the people, processes, systems and data associated with product introduction, enabling a highly-collaborative, repeatable approach to maximize the success of each new product while continually improving a company’s expertise and effectiveness. 

Whether you are interested in providing overall management of the Product Lifecycle, or wish to understand more about key activities and their relationship to product and company success, this course will provide students with a very practical and comprehensive understanding of Product Lifecycle Management and related topics: 

  • PLM Phases and Associated Processes and Tools. A great deal of activity must be managed in parallel across numerous disciplines and teams to maximize success and profits. Choosing, following and continuously improving PLM practices is critical in today’s highly competitive markets. 
  • Roles and Collaboration. The successful PLM effort must ensure that all company business functions are adequately represented and the resulting product and support meet critical business goals.  
  • Phase Gate Management. Phase Gates provide a means to align activities, organizations and management at each major and minor milestone, such that progress is efficient and critical decisions are effectively made and communicated. 
  •  PLM Data and its Management. PLM systems provide a configuration management approach to the capture and dissemination of product and project data, as well as automation and enforcement of associated processes. 
  • ESG, Sustainability and the Circular Economy. With increasing focus on the environmental, social responsibility and governance (ESG) of corporations, PLM can help maximize consideration and application of good corporate citizenship. 
  • Special Topics. Various dynamics and approaches can enhance (or detract from) PLM effectiveness. Sample topics include company management culture, organizational structure and profit and cost management.