PLM and PIM certainly have different origins and designed for different purposes. But choosing between these two strategy must be industry dependant. e.g. in a CPG industry (Consumer Packaged Goods), PIM is preferred over PLM due to disparate system data and near real-time synchronization. PLM plays an important role where there is a need to manage the BOMs (Bill of Materials), complex CAD, CAM etc. Below are some points and definitions around the two jargons.
Product Information Management
Gartner says "Product Information Management is the combination of the technology, processes and services needed to create and maintain an accurate, timely and complete view of the product across multiple channels, business lines and potentially, enterprises, where there are multiple sources of product data in multiple application systems and databases."
Benefits - (PIM Oracle/Any PIM Systems)
Ensure compliance with regulations and industry mandates such as RoHS/WEEE and GDSN/UCCnet (with PDS)
Maintain clean, accurate single source of the truth through broad data quality tools (with PIM Data Librarian)
Enrich product information for all enterprise business processes (with PIM Data Librarian)
Consolidating product information across hetetogenous enterprise systems
Drive toward better product quality
Component Supplier Management - resuse and sourcing
Automatic data synchronization with trading partners
Consolidate onto a single product definition system, for engineering, sales and manufacturing
Reduce product costs dramatically
Increase sales force effectiveness
Moreover, the term PIM has appeared more frequently due to data synchronization, syndication, compliance (RoHS/WEEE and GDSN/UCCnet) and RFID initiatives brought in by some large retailers like Walmart, The Home Depot, Albertsons, Safeway etc.
Product Lifecycle Management
PLM is the process of managing the entire lifecycle of a product from its conception, through design and manufacture, to service and disposal
Reduced time to market
Improved product quality
A framework for product optimization
PLM systems on the other hand lack a PIM system’s ability for secure, trusted synchronization of information to data pools like UCCnet. Also they hardly meet the compliance and industry mandates.