Why partnerships work
The concept of partnerships and alliances is not new; countries and nations of like minds have been forming alliances for thousands of years, often when their values and beliefs align. In the highly competitive engineering simulation & testing markets of the twenty-first century, businesses are facing increasing pressure to stay ahead of the curve whilst delivering high quality and more innovative products and services to their customers at competitive prices. Everyone needs to get products faster to market, lower costs, maintain or improve quality, and achieve higher productivity. This is made even more challenging due to constant technological advancements and innovations allowing new competitors to enter and disrupt markets like never before. The advent of the COVID-19 pandemic in 2020 has only accelerated the digital disruption we have seen in many industries even further as new patterns of working and digital transformations are embarked upon. Consequently, forming partnerships to build a comprehensive ecosystem of solutions is an advantageous strategy to help our customers tackle their biggest problems and thus stay ahead of their competition.
The rush towards electrification generally presents a paradigm shift in the manufacturing industry today. With the need for clean, efficient, high-performance products, it is easy to observe why the eMobility and electric vehicle market is expanding so rapidly. However, a high demand for low-carbon vehicles globally poses fresh challenges for design and analyst engineers in the transportation industries as they require new product design and manufacturing methods to address these demands, all while reducing noise and emissions to meet new environmental and sustainability regulations. Additionally, after generating decades of knowledge and experience of internal combustion engines (ICEs), interactions that occur within electro-mechanical systems are relatively unknown and present unfamiliar challenges for automotive engineers. It is not as simple as replacing an ICE with an electric motor and automotive engineers are beginning to accept that a once predominantly mechanical device is becoming a complex electro-mechanical system. Hence, the need for collaboration continues to increase, as electro-mechanical powertrains are increasingly integrated into transportation meaning that all the physics simulations need to be brought together at a single point without error.
Manufacturers have been adapting to combat these megatrend challenges by delivering products through a virtual and integrated product development process. The overall aim of a virtual product development process is to reduce costs, improve collaboration, increase innovation and instil confidence in designing the product Right First Time as Hexagon strives for. This digital integration of product development from concept to manufacturing will ultimately reduce the need for real-world prototyping, so engineers must have confidence in the computer-aided engineering (CAE) tools they use. Furthermore, the unprecedented challenges caused by the global COVID-19 pandemic has only reinforced the necessity for greater collaboration through the use of CAE simulation.
In order to achieve this smarter, more agile virtual product development process, engineers need interoperable tools that can quickly and seamlessly pass the correct data between applications. And 'data is the new oil' that needs to be passed forward from R&D to production and operations and fed back from manufacturing and operations to improve the early design cycle. Industry is changing at pace as we enter Industry 4.0, 5G, the world of Digital Twins and autonomy, and simulation software is leading the way. We cannot be locked away in one department or silo anymore; CAD/CAM/CAE models need to be shared throughout departments, across the organization and, in the industry 4.0 paradigm, beyond our organization. Thus, we need the help of ecosystems to extend our capabilities so that users have access to robust workflows and simultaneous use of tools across different physics disciplines or stages of development.
To help designers and analyst engineers overcome these challenges, our open partner ecosystem can sit at the heart of the CAE process, empowering teams to collaborate and champion innovation. Our product portfolio and solution suites have strong ties with partners' products, ranging from integrations with major tool suppliers to interfaces with niche application vendors. The ultimate benefactors of these integrations are our end users, as working within our uniquely dynamic ecosystem provides access to innovative technology all in one place, leading to significant improvements in design and development, crucially reducing their product's time to market. Collaborating with key industry players not only creates a stronger workflow for our users, it also allows us to spend more of our time focusing on the challenges industry is facing. This kind of philosophy spurs collaboration across all fields to deliver new innovations for numerous domains and applications.
Our experience over decades has enabled us to develop an approach to partnering that allows us to be open, collaborative and straightforward with partners who wish to build links with our ecosystem. We greatly appreciate all those partners that match our openness and enthusiasm for providing the market with ever better products and best-in-class toolchains. We look forward to achieving great things together in the future.