This was the passionate proclamation by the North American president of KTM, manufacturers of very sophisticated motorcycles for off-road and street use.  The company and their products live by the “Ready to Race” mission. At ServiceMax, we like to show our orange passion as well, so I immediately became a big fan. KTM was among several customers talking about product innovation, sustainability, solving big problems and investing in young people at the recent Global PTC Live conference held in Nashville this week.

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The week kicked off on the historic stage of the Grand Ole Opry where PTC’s CEO, Jim Heppleman, shared a vision of the transformation that is taking place between the physical world and the digital world. In the past, there was little connection between the design of a product and the actual product in use. PTC is leading the way in bringing those two worlds together by introducing the concept of the “digital twin”.  Imagine how service of the future will be when technicians are able to visualize the animated, 3D design images of the actual product they are servicing!

PTC has made significant investments in IoT technology through the acquisition of ThingWorx, Axeda and recently Cold Light, an IoT data analytics platform. From my perspective, the most exciting thing is that service, specifically Field Service is being viewed as the “killer app” for much of this connected device technology. And ServiceMax was again named in the keynote presentation as the Field Service solution PTC has selected to leverage all of their IoT assets. The small team from ServiceMax attending PTC Live was beaming with pride as we heard Mr. Heppleman tell the audience why they were so excited to be partnering with us in delivering smart connected service for smart connected products.

The morning session also included a mention of ServiceMax by PTC’s EVP of Internet Technology, Rob Gremley, that service as a process is the killer app for manufacturers and that together we are creating a field service execution system for our customers.


Malcolm Gladwell, renowned author and lecturer concluded the morning session talking about transformation and innovation. He called out three traits of innovative people – they are creative, conscientious and disagreeable. I found the last trait especially interesting because it implies that innovators have a way of reframing problems. Their passion drives them to sometimes do the unpopular thing and they do it with a sense of urgency. Very inspiring stuff.

On the second day, we heard from a handful of PTC customers during the morning keynote. In addition to KTM mentioned earlier, we heard how John Deere is investing in the future of farming and the programs they and PTC are involved in to help introduce young people to advanced new technology. An executive from Embraer talked about how they are making their fleet of advanced aircraft greener and more efficient. We also learned about “biomimicry” from Boston Scientific who showed us their drone “fish” modeled after tuna.

The PTC Service Life Cycle team hosted a full track on Service Excellence for the remainder of the day.  Steve Morandi, PTC’s GM for the SLM group reiterated PTCs commitment to providing a robust set of service solutions for everything from parts, pricing and logistics to technical knowledge and diagnostic content. ServiceMax was again called out as the Field Service component within the SLM suite.  ServiceMax’s Scott Berg shared our joint vision for connected products and proactive service that enable customers to deliver outcome-based service as a product. The audience was even treated to an actual demo of the connected solutions using PTC’s ThingWorx Converge technology integrated with ServiceMax.

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The audience at PTC Live was very engaged and excited to see some practical, real-world application for the wave of technology that is transforming manufacturing and service. Several customers expressed interest in learning more and even participating in any early adopter programs as the joint PTC/ServiceMax solutions are brought to market. If you are reading this and share that interest, please join ServiceMax and PTC for a webinar on June 18 to learn more. You can register here.

It would be impossible to cover everything that took place at PTC Live 2015 here, but I walked away very excited to be working with a company with an amazing roster of companies doing some amazing things using PTC products in the design, manufacturing and servicing of their products. We are super excited to be partnering with PTC to deliver on our joint vision as the Operating System of the Service Economy.