Integral Logistics Management — Operations Management and Supply Chain Management Within and Across Companies

17.5.3 Data and Functional Model for General EDM Tasks

Intended learning outcomes: Identify the object classes for engineering data management (EDM). Produce an overview on the classification system to aid the designer’s work.



Engineering data management (EDM) is used to manage the technical data that describe a product, together with the relevant standards and classification. Many of these classes can be compared to the master data for planning & control described in Section 17.2:

  • Item master file: All the technical data used to describe and classify items. This category includes data for defining the release and transfer of data to the corresponding IT-supported technologies. Search criteria are used to find items on the basis of different attributes. The item ID may first be assigned provisionally by the designer. However, the standardizing committee within the company must define an appropriate identification before the item may be definitively released. This ID is then used for planning & control.
  • Drawing directory: This contains additional, item-related data, that is, data that are usually shown in the drawing header. The attributes are a description; the date on which the drawing was created, checked, or printed; and the people responsible for all these actions. A list of revisions is also provided.
  • Special object classes for works standards, for example, DIN standards, may be kept in separate object classes.
  • Bill of material (actually the bill-of-material position): This comprises the attributes described in Section 17.2.3. These include the “relative position in the drawing,” which generally incorporates the relative position number. This forms the bill-of- material position ID together with the product ID. Other attributes include the date and person responsible for all this information.
  • Work center, with the attributes shown in shown in Section 17.2.4.
  • Production equipment and bill of tools (see Section 17.2.7).
  • Operation (see Section 17.2.6).

There is also a classification system to aid the designer’s work. This enables an item to be traced using a standardized, hierarchical classification. The classification system shown here should ideally be filled in using standardized information, for example, conforming to DIN 4000. The bottom level of DIN 4000 corresponds to an item family and is linked to the class list of characteristics.

An (item) characteristic is a parameter or criterion typically associated with this item family. 

A class list of characteristics is a set of typical attributes for an item family, i.e., a description of a specific item from an item family using values for various item characteristics.

The item characteristics and class list of characteristics should ideally follow standards, for example, in Europe, in accordance with DIN 4000.

Multilevel bills of material or where-used lists would be needed to search the bill of material, as would tests for product structures with loops.. Queries will also be needed for the standardized classification system and class-list-of-characteristics hierarchies.




Course section 17.5: Subsections and their intended learning outcomes