The new Selerant DevEX Baseline system contains pre-built business process bundles to standardize core aspects of product lifecycle management. Previously, we covered how DevEX Baseline works for ingredient management and packaging management.
DevEX Baseline contains numerous pre-configured bundles for formula management that roll-up your ingredient data into trial recipes and offer streamlined methods for approving, tracking and promoting trial recipes into active formulas.
The system includes standardized formula material data fields, specification templates and status and approval workflows for both direct processes, such as managing approved formulas and managing trial formulas, and downstream processes, like managing labelling guidelines.
Just like ingredient and packaging management options, the formula management bundles can deployed separately or together in different combinations to fit your products’ specific formulation processes. Baseline offers three types of formula management combinations to cover every scenario.
- Express Formula Management: DevEX Baseline contains both standard trial and approved formula templates, as well as experimental and approved ingredient templates. This foundational setup maintains consistent data between experimental and approved ingredients and trial and approved formulas and allows you to quickly activate formulas without needing a well-defined business process.
- Standard Formula Management: This package adds on the ability to manage label specifications and the ability to approve and activate formulas using status changes with approval workflows.
- Plus Formula Management: This package enables you to manage the formulation process directly from formula specification templates. Formula master data, status changes, versioning and activation are all driven from the specifications and synchronized with trial formulas and ingredients.
Data Attributes for Streamlined Formula Creation
No matter which package you choose, DevEX Baseline offers numerous data sets to fit your product attributes. These data attribute sets mirror the options available in Baseline’s ingredient management modules, enabling consistency between your ingredient design and formula design. This consistency enables quick data roll-ups for formula calculations, saving you time and improving accuracy throughout the product lifecycle.
Using data attribute sets allows you to:
- Map formula properties onto core product attributions, ensuring that any formula calculations will work if related ingredient data fields use different values (ex. mass vs. volume)
- Use data attribute sets within the output of corresponding formula calculations
- View and work with trial formulas using different built-in data views, such as by ingredient lists and cost data
Promoting and Activating Trial Formula to Final Formula
Once formula data has been entered, built-in review and approval workflows allow you to quickly update experimental recipes into approved formulas and active those approved formulas when they are ready to be released for market.
Like other Baseline business process bundles, the Formula Management functionality allows approvers to be customized on the fly and contain numerous methods for formulation activation that best fit the complexity of your internal process.
Express Workflows: Manual Activation Promoting Manually
With the Express Formula Management package, you can promote the trial formula using a straightforward Promote button.
- A built-in validation process ensures all the necessary trial data, formula codes and other information have been entered accurately onto your trial recipe before activation.
- Once it has been promoted, the status of the trial formula is changed to “Formalized” and it creates a final formula that is a direct copy of your trial formula, carrying over all the approved experimental data attributes.
DevEX Baseline also contains options for automatically replacing experimental ingredients with approved ingredients within your trial formulas. You can copy ingredients out of your formulas and re-use them as experimental ingredients within different formulas with one click, allowing you to use different versions of a basic formula as elements in many projects and product variations.
Standard Workflows: Activation with Material Status Management
The Standard level introduces the use of material status management changes to approve and activate trial formulas. Once you select “Initiating Review,” all of your trial formula data is locked from edit while approvers are reviewing. Approvers from multiple departments can be added and assigned review tasks.
Once approval is finished, entering administrator credentials will automatically change the formula’s status to Active. With this method, active recipes may also be discontinued with a simple status change.
Plus Workflows: Activation with Specification Templates
DevEX Baseline enables status management and activation directly from formula specifications, linking recipe and data fields on pre-built recipe specification templates. At the Plus level, Baseline allows you to review and activate both formula and labeling specifications in parallel, as so you can control separate but connected steps in the PLM process at once.
Just like the Standard level, you can use status change options such as “On Creation,” “Review Initiated” and “Apply” to drive changes on your trial formulas and approve them for activation. These status changes are updated as users take actions in the system either on trial formulas or specification, depending on your product type, division, production plants and more.
If you want to re-formulate your product, a “Start Re-formulation” allows you to supersede existing trial and activated formulas and specifications with new information. You can:
- Link your specification template to a newly-created trial or approved formula and create a new formula code
- Connect all changes to your product into your business processes
- View the history of changes to your formula or specification
- Ensure that only the most current ingredient, formula data, documents, target markets and reports are in use for your active products
Benefits of the DevEX Baseline for Formula Management
Whether you have just a few or many steps required for your formula activation process, DevEX Baseline offers the same advanced validation logic and final status options in each formula management bundle to create accurate, controlled active formulas for your organization.
With DevEX Baseline, your organization can:
- Use pre-built data templates to roll up approved ingredients into trial and activated recipes, reducing data entry time and errors
- Quickly move processes from trial ingredients and formulas to approved and activated formulas
- Promote formulas using either formula objects or formula specifications, depending on your company’s existing processes
- Easily re-formulate your products without starting from scratch and replace and re-use formula objects all the way down to the experimental ingredient level
- Maintain consistent status changes, so users always know where formulas and specifications stand in the activation process