Earlier this month you may have seen the news on our strategy for the Cloud. CIMdata, a leading PLM industry analyst & consulting firm, published our release in Aras Explains Cloud Strategy.

The initial phase of the strategy is very simple. Lead the market in delivering an enterprise PLM platform that can be securely deployed in a wide variety of "Cloud" scenarios. This is already happening today.

You may not realize that Aras is a highly secure cloud-ready PLM solution, right now. There's not a special module and you don't need some secret decoder ring. Aras is a true cloud architecture that runs on the latest virtualization technologies and partitions well for distributed deployments where compute resources are automatically provisioned for elastic scalability.

Partitioning also enables a wide variety of deployment scenarios including hybrid deployments where replicated file vaults remain on-premise behind the firewall while application servers operate in the cloud. Web services federation enables secure connections to other systems whether located on-site or in the cloud. And there's a lot more. If interested, you can check out our site to read more on how the Aras technology is ready for the cloud now.

Equally important, our enterprise open source business model fundamentally transforms the economics of operating PLM in a large-scale private cloud environment. Because the PLM license fees have been eliminated thousands of users from across the extended supply chain can have secure, full-functional access while from a financial perspective you maintain a predictable fixed cost structure.

The second aspect of our strategy is much more compelling for most organizations. We are providing global companies with the capability to leverage cloud-based data, services and analytics directly in the PLM workflow for new, more effective ways to conduct business.

What does that mean? Well, as data sets "of record" continue to expand in the cloud, such as online parts / component databases and other third-party sources, the ability for end users to securely access and bring information to the point of use in the right context during the PLM workflow represents a powerful new approach to achieve greater productivity. Additionally, services and analytics such as specification analysis, compliance validation and BPO product engineering services can also be seamlessly and securely integrated into your corporate workflows.

This may sound a bit futuristic to some people. What's important to understand is that these are the types of capabilities that we all use today in our personal lives. Whether we're accessing iTunes or booking a flight from our phones. And I don't know about you, but it's amazing to me that this seems like the distant future to many companies (and to the other major PLM providers). Well, we're making it possible now.

What’s your take?