At Methodic's we work with a wide range of customers from those with no existing design data management solutions to those with complex internally developed solutions. A couple of common themes during our discussion are "do i really need a Data Management (DM) solution", and "Why can't i just use an exiting software DM Solution".
The answers to the first question is of course "yes". Doing modern SoC design without a comprehensive DM methodology is unnecessarily increasing risk as well as just making everyones job more difficult. The second question is a little more difficult to answer from our perspective. Some DM vendors would answer that you need a property HW specific DM solution since nothing else could possibly work, others will tell you a software solution is fine and all that is needed is the right methodology to plug into it.
As with many things, the truth lies somewhere in between and to help address this confusion and we have written a whitepaper to capture the DM Best Practices as they relate to SoC Design (DM Best Practices Whitepaper).
The HW world is tiny compared to the SW world, and even large HW development projects can be easily dwarfed by some leading edge SW projects. As such we must to learn from and leverage the tools they have created (and develop at a rapid pace). At the same time SoC Design is very different and works at a different level of abstraction than SW design. SW design works at the file and class level, while modern SoC design is all about IP.
At Methodics we build on existing SW solutions (allowing SoC design to share the same infrastructure as the rest of the project data, as well as allowing easy access to all SoC data) but add the additional tools, metadata, and infrastructure needed to enable an IP-centric design methodology. This IP-centric DM solution builds on the latest industry standard Perforce or Subversion DM solutions to ensure we can deliver the best of both worlds without compromise.