Propel, of Santa Clara, Calif., which makes product lifecycle management software, has introduced two new solutions in its most recent 2018 release intended to help companies improve product compliance and deepen customer trust. They are a specification management and compliance solution and a training records management solution.
All Propel customers get these capabilities as part of their standard Propel license.
The first tool allows companies to quickly and flexibly manage product compliance requirements that customers most care about, such as the Restriction of Hazardous Substances Directive (RoHS), product safety, forced labor, intellectual property confidentiality, and conflict minerals. The company’s new training records management tool helps companies in regulated industries track training compliance for all employees involved in making products, says Brian Sohmers, Propel’s co-founder and chief product officer.
Tracking compliance can be a time consuming and error-prone process when products consist of thousands of parts, involve hundreds of employees and suppliers, need to meet multiple regional requirements, and undergo dozens of changes, Sohmers says.
“Many of the companies that Propel works with are launching products at a historic pace, and they always need to make sure their latest products comply with a complex set of regulatory requirements like RoHS, REACH or JEDEC,” Sohmers says.
Mid-market companies have faced additional product compliance challenges, since existing solutions are often expensive, hard to implement and difficult to use, he adds.
The PLM-maker’s recent software release allows companies of any size to track compliance to product specifications and training requirements by providing visibility into compliance status for any product, tracking historical records and updates, and keeping managers and stakeholders informed and in the loop.
“Propel is making it much easier for companies like Samsara to manage our product compliance,” says Ben Calderon, vice president of hardware engineering and operations at Samsara, which builds Internet-connected sensor systems.
“Certifications and compliance requirements vary by product function, application and region. In addition, laboratory approvals may have their own timeline different from the hardware project,” Calderon says. “Propel’s latest PLM software release enables Samsara to navigate the compliance challenges with easily adaptable tracking methods.”
Specification management and compliance tool highlights:
- Track compliance status to any specification on a manufacturer part or directly on an item
- Roll-up compliance statuses on a bill of materials (BOM)
- Use worst case scenario when dealing with multiple manufacturer parts, or declare compliance status on a parent part to override roll-ups
- Apply specifications to Propel’s item categories for even easier administration
- Declare compliance status through a declaration process, which allows multiple stakeholders to review compliance
- Keep records of status changes
- Apply specific exemptions to specifications
Training records management highlights
- Keep historical records of who and when an employee reviewed documents that are marked for training, and provide trainers, managers, and auditors with accurate and transparent training records
- Create training assignments with due dates for selected trainees when a new document revision is published
- Notify trainees and managers when a new training is assigned and when it becomes overdue
- Create re-training assignments on a schedule
- Allow engineers to decide on a case-by-case bases if training is required when they revision a new document
- Track when trainees download documents
- Require electronic sign-off with passwords, and allow trainers and managers to sign off for trainees when they don’t have system access