Aras Connect in Detroit -- Highlights in Review

Aras Connect was a great success for our customers, partners, visitors, and Aras employees. As our very first regional community event in Detroit, the Aras team was very excited with this success. Here are some of the event’s highlights:

Craig Brown, executive consultant at CIMdata and the former PLM leader at GM, highlighted his experience using the Aras Innovator platform. Craig did an excellent job detailing the journey from startup through releasing new systems/services.

Magna CPMP Director, Jan Montrose, walked the attendees through the company’s experience with the Aras platform. She described how Magna has improved their Project Management, including how they measure user friendliness, the importance of having the right staff, clear objectives, and using an agile transformation approach to future-proof their business.

Product Vision and Roadmap
Mark Reisig, Aras’ Director of Product Marketing, presented an updated product vision and roadmap of new features and capabilities coming for Innovator v12. These include upcoming releases for Systems Architecture, Physical Asset Foundation (Digital Twin), Simulation Management, Dynamic Product Navigation, and the Aras cloud strategy in 2020. Mark also discussed how Aras’s SAFe agile framework is allowing Aras to release Service Packs with new functionality every six weeks. As expected, this session brought many questions about upcoming features and functionality.

DENSO International America (DIAM) presented their journey using Aras Innovator. William Hall, Project Engineer, and Gary Nieman, EIT Manager, described their use of Aras for technical reports and their deployment in four months with 100% acceptance within two weeks of launch. They discussed their use of Aras Product Engineering highlighting how they are now able to share CAD data across their digital thread for better collaboration across the enterprise. They also discussed how they moved RFQs and Sourcing BOMs into Aras, enabling them to better share and track RFQ and project planning information.

Customer Success
Aras’ Senior Director of Customer Success, James Gehan, explained the unique approach to upgradesā€•not only are they included with the subscription, but Aras will do the actual upgrade services and include all customizations. He also explored the role that customers and Aras play in “roadmap planning”—the planning for and scheduling these upgrades in a way that aligns with company strategies across an organization. Aras’ upgrade service will assist in this planning, which is why 90% of Aras subscribers are on a release within three years.

Panel Discussion
Based upon feedback, the customer panel was a highlight of the event. Why? Different companies/leaders brought unique perspectives to the different questions asked. With Joseph Anderson, President of IpX, moderating, Magna’s Jan Montrose, DIAM’s EPD Director Saurabh Desai, and CIMdata’s Craig Brown delved into their experiences of organization change management (OCM) when deploying technology, and the key factors in their successful journeys. They shared their insights into how to help people adopt actual change with a clear vision—by building awareness, community, competency, momentum, and acceptance.

Aras CAD Management
Raul Rosa, Product Manager at Aras, presented Innovator’s CAD agnostic capabilities. He reviewed Innovator’s end-to-end CAD management, and also highlighted how customers use the Innovator platform to integrate multi-CAD environments and the flexibility of the platform allows CAD data to be used across the lifecycle.

The event ended with a reception that included food, drinks, great discussion, and lots of laughter.

We welcome Aras Connect attendees' feedback on the event and suggestions to improve this community-based event going forward. We certainly hope to see each of our attendees at our next event as we explore a new set of topics and discussions