Digital Transformation -- Making Industrial Innovation a Reality

Written By: Katie Scherbel
  • 10/3/2018

Polaris Digital TransformationIn recent years, we’ve seen a shift in how organizations view digital transformation: from considering it as an enterprise initiative to deeming it a necessity for survival in the market. Several things are driving this change: 

  • New Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT) and connected products strategies
  • Mergers and acquisitions or global expansion
  • Overall system complexity
  • Compliance
  • Market share… the list goes on

The bottom line is that digital transformation enables collaboration across enterprise functions and processes – something that is crucial from the moment a product idea is conceived, through that product being manufactured, released, sold, and put into service. This type of tightly integrated collaboration is critical to product innovation and acceleration. 

PTC customers are embracing digital transformation to help them achieve their company’s vision. Many are starting to improve their product development processes: creating a digital thread from engineering to manufacturing and service, and leveraging emerging technologies such as IIoT, digital twin, and augmented reality (AR) to drive industrial innovation – both internally and with consumers. 

Let’s take a look at what two PTC customers, Polaris and Whirlpool Corporation, are doing to drive digital transformation – and, in turn, innovation for their customers:


Polaris has been on a remarkable journey. Their vision is to fuel the passion of both their workers and outdoor enthusiasts around the globe by delivering innovative, high-quality vehicles, products, services, and experiences that enrich their lives. By empowering their employees with PLM and CAD tools and processes, Polaris provides customers with a great end-to-end experience – from customized purchase options to service to end-of-life.

They’re adopting a step-by-step approach to digital transformation from PLM to CAD, Manufacturing, and Service. Polaris is exploring a variety of PLM technologies to achieve their vision – from optimizing their CAD models, to driving a modular, platform-based product architecture, to transforming their bills of materials, accessing relevant product data via role and task-based applications and engaging with that data through augmented reality. 

These technologies will open doors for product and process improvement internally while improving the overall experience for customers. For instance, application of these various digital engineering use cases could enable extreme product testing and validation to ensure utmost product safety, reliability, and durability. Polaris could use AR to let consumers experience features before buying – or to one day repair their snowmobile on their own – no professional help required. They could use real-time analysis of consumer data to increase product quality or understand how and what vehicle features are used the most. The possibilities are endless – and launching a digital transformation initiative starting with the evolution of its product development process is the key to getting innovation started.

Whirlpool Corporation

Another great story lies with multinational manufacturing giant, Whirlpool Corporation. For the home of the future, Whirlpool Corporation is focused on providing outstanding products to their consumers that are smart and connected. Every technical innovation is inspired by the impact it will have on the consumer. PLM will reduce overall complexity and improve processes and efficiencies. 

To name a few, Whirlpool Corporation is well on their way to seeing benefits in the area of Lifecycle and Process Management and Configurability, Systems Engineering, and Digital Traceability solutions – all while pursuing additional value-adding technologies such as data-driven design and AR for their test labs. It’s all about making products easier to use, faster, and better. 


These are just two of the many PTC customers that are adapting, evolving, and launching their companies forward in the era of digital transformation. They are turning everyday innovation into a reality. 

Dig into both the Polaris and Whirlpool Corporation stories for yourself. Experience their digital transformations with a series of videos focused on their visions and how they tie into critical areas of focus in their digital transformation initiatives. You can also explore a series of demonstrations that highlight each specific technology either already implemented or being considered at each company.

Related Articles:




  • Windchill
  • Digital Transformation
  • Automotive
  • Retail and Consumer Products
  • Augmented Reality
  • Industrial Internet of Things
  • PLM

About the Author

Katie Scherbel

Katie Scherbel is the Director of Product Marketing for PTC’s PLM division. She is a content crafter by trade with over 10 years of experience in the tech industry, specializing in PLM, digital transformation, big data, cloud, storage and converged architectures. Before joining PTC, Katie was the Alliances Marketing Manager at SimpliVity Corporation and worked in partner and solutions marketing at EMC.