What is End-to-End Configuration?
To us at Configit, end-to-end (E2E) configuration means the product lifecycle all the way through the following four phases: Engineering, where a product is engineered and designed. Sales, where the product is configured, priced, and sold. Manufacturing, where it gets manufactured, delivered, and deployed. Service, where the product is serviced and upgraded. In the end, the product is decommissioned and may have to be replaced with an equivalent product, based on some of the same requirements as the original product.
Using an end-to-end configuration solution, we address the challenges organizations face during these phases with a consistent view of the product offering throughout the enterprise.
For example, when servicing a product, it’s important that you have an up-to-date and detailed understanding of its configuration and install base in order to service it, replace parts, or upgrade it to add new capabilities.
Change is another challenge that we see. This change can be an engineering change or a legal requirement that influences the configurations and the variability of the product and has to be reflected across all functions. But how do you reflect a change effectively across all parts of the organization?
Example – A Change Effecting Configuration
Some years ago, a tsunami in Japan destroyed a factory that was manufacturing a particular orange paint color. This unforeseen event meant that they couldn’t sell cars with this particular feature of orange paint and would have to stop that order intake. In this case, it also affected many different sales configurators and websites, including those of the dealers and resellers. It would be very difficult and time consuming to update all these different systems with the information that you can’t sell this particular paint color in a certain timeframe.
How do you manage such a change throughout an organization in an efficient manner without it taking three months to propagate?