Teen apparel retailer Aéropostale has implemented product lifecycle management (PLM) software to help boost collaboration between its headquarters and global suppliers.

With retail and manufacturing operations in many different locations, the company is using Gerber Technology's YuniquePLM software to enable its designers, sourcing team and vendors to communicate more clearly.

With the new tool, "all of the information is in one location within the tech packs we're passing to vendors, so our production partners know where to look for certain types of data. It's always going to be in the same place," explains Gillian Maser, senior product manager for corporate initiatives at Aéropostale.

YuniquePLM is also helping designers at Aéropostale by pre-positioning fabric needs across its headquarters and supplier network. Vendors may begin locating fabric options, eliminating the need for designers to recreate fabric specifications.

Jessica McDermott, design director of men's knits at Aéropostale, notes: "The information we are sharing with production can be pulled as a report with a higher level of accuracy, while contributing to design's final tech pack completion.

"It's in a system so we're one step closer to the final result, which is a tech pack, and we're streamlining our workload rather than adding duplicative work."