COURSE 5 : Collaborate and make it alive


Collaboration & Traceability. Make collaboration easier between people involved in product development is a key feature in OpenPLM. Ensure traceability of all Objects is another main advantage using OpenPLM. But how can we make collaboration easier ? And how to ensure such a traceability ?

In this course, you will learn how people can collaborate together working in dedicated group, using check-out/check-in process and delegating their rights. Then, you will learn how to use electronic signatures, revision management and how it ensure traceability of developped product.


  1. You should be looged in with a valid user who have "Contributor" rights. See TutoGroupsandUsers for User creation.
  2. You should have several objects already created in your OpenPLM server. See TutoParts for Part creation and TutoDocuments for Document creation.

Working in Groups

In the precedent courses, we already mention Groups behavure :

"Within one Working Group you can share Parts and Documents. If you are member of it, you have access to it. If you're not member you don't have access to it. "

Here we explain how to create them.

And here is an Overview of Groups concept.

Check-out / Check-in process

We already talk about check-out/check-in process too :

" First trap in collaboration process OpenPLM help to escape is the modification of the same file by several people in parallel. The solution is the check-out / check-in process.

When a User check-out a file, he/she download a file and lock it. While locked, the file can't be modified by another User.

When job is done, User check-in the file i.e. he/she upload and unlock it. Then another User can take his turn and check-out the file. "

Here we detail the process.


A User has some rights on an Object (Part, Document, Group). In the different rights, we distinguish :

  • Ownership : If a User owns an Object he can edit and modify it, he can cancel it, he can designate people who will sign it, he can activate notification for other Users, ...
  • Signature : With this right, a User can sign and promote the corresponding Object from one state to another state
  • Notification : With this right, a User is notified of all events which happen to the corresponding object.

Important : In OpenPLM standard version, as soon as they are contributor, all Users who belong to a Group have access, modification and connexion rights on all objects which belong to this group too.

A User may delegate his rights for a single Object or he may give global delegation for one type of rights.

Rights delegation on one object

For Notification right :

1. For a given Object (here DOC_00189), go to the "Lifecycle" tab and click on "Notify" :
2. The search box appear with all Users, for selected User, click on "ADD" :
3. You can Replace or Delete notification right :

For Signature right :

1. For a given Object (here DOC_00189), go to the "Lifecycle" tab and click on Replace icon as shown :
2. The search box appear with all Users, for selected User, click on "ADD" :

For Ownership right :

1. For a given Object (here DOC_00189), go to the "Lifecycle" tab and, at the bottom, click on Owner "Replace" :
2. The search box appear with all Users, for selected User, click on "ADD" :
Caution : You just gave Ownership rights i.e. you have no longer right to modify this Object

Global delegation

1. In the home page, click on your profile (top of the window) :
2. In the "DELEGATION" tab, you have access to all delegations and sponsorships, click on "Delegate" and select the Right :
3. The search box appear with all Users, for selected User, click on "ADD" :
4. You can stop delegation using the related button :

Promote Objects

A Document or a Part has a lifecycle and its current state is one state of the lifecycle.

OpenPLM standard configuration recognizes three main states :

  • Draft : An Object at a Draft state is supposed to be modified easely by members of the group
  • Official : An Object at Official state can't be modified easely and OpenPLM transfers its ownership to "company" special user
  • Deprecated : An Object at Deprecated state shall no longer be used in new designs. Most of the time it has been replaced by another revision or another Object

OpenPLM standard behavure follows three major rules :

  1. A Document shall have a file to be promoted to Official state
  2. A Part shall be connected to minimum one Official Document to be promoted to Official state
  3. A parent Part can't have a state higher than its child Parts (eg: an assembly can't be at Official state if one of the part it contains is at Draft state)
1. For a given Object (here DOC_00189), go to the "Lifecycle" tab. If you have the required rights you can click on "Promote" :
2. Confirm action with your password and click on "Yes" :
3. The state has changed (in this example switched to Official and the owner has changed to be "company") :

Revise Objects

Just in the previous chapter, herebefore, it is written : "An Object at Official state can't be modified easely"

If a User want to modify it, the best solution is to create a new revision. Revising an Object consists in cloning this Object keeping its type and its reference. Then, you can modify this new Object and you still have access to the old one.

Revising an Object several times allows you to keep a picture of this object at several moments. Then you can access to its several revisions, you can access to what it was in the past. Doing that, you ensure its traceability.

1. For a given Object (here DOC_00189), go to the "Revision" tab. OpenPLM suggests a new revision. Click on "NEW" :
2. OpenPLM presents you the list of connected Objects. Select those you want to connect to new revision and click on "Yes" :
3. A new Document with a new revision has been created (revision b) :
4. Traceability : Select this new Document and go to History tab, you have access to all events to all revisions :

BOM traceability

Traceability is ensure by the creation of several revisions. We can do that for Documents but also for Parts. Here is on simple example which shows how to make alive a BOM and, therefore, ensure traceability of an entire product.