CAD Manager's Newsletter (#325)

9 Jul, 2014 By: Robert Green

Break the Bottleneck

Diagnose where the bottlenecks are in your company's CAD workflow so your users can work more efficiently.

Over the years I've come to believe that CAD managers are in charge of an ecosystem of components that, when properly combined, produce completed CAD work. And, since CAD managers always want things to work better and faster, with less effort, they strive to constantly make the CAD ecosystem more productive for their users.

So the question becomes, "How can I make my CAD ecosystem work better for everyone involved?" The answer, in my opinion, is by chasing down and eliminating the productivity-sapping bottlenecks in your system. In this edition of the CAD Manager's Newsletter, I'll explain what I mean by bottleneck and demonstrate how you can quantify them so you're always making your CAD ecosystem a better place to get work done. Here goes.

The Ecosystem Defined

I like to think of the CAD ecosystem as comprising all the components necessary to complete CAD projects, which usually move from one component to the next in this sequence:

  1. The users. They think about solutions to the design problem at hand, then attempt to input their ideas into the CAD software.
  2. The input devices. Mice, trackballs, keyboards, laser scanners, and digital cameras all capture information for use with CAD software.
  3. The workstation and network. None of the user input means anything without a workstation, and in most cases a network as well, that run the software reliably.
  4. The standards and training system. The more thoroughly the users are trained and the standard procedures are implemented, the better the software will serve us.

Read more »

:: CAD Manager's Toolbox

Workstation Configurator by Intel

There's a lot of misinformation out there about how to optimally configure a workstation for a given CAD task load, that's for sure. To get a good idea of what type of hardware you should be specifying for future purchases, a quick trip to the Intel Workstation Configurator tool is a painless way to get started. Read more »

Do you have a question or tip for the CAD Manager's Newsletter? Send it to me at If I use your tip in the newsletter you'll receive a cool Cadalyst prize!


:: Resources

FME International User Conference 2014 Content Available Online
Safe Software, maker of FME spatial data transformation technology has posted online all the content from its FME International User Conference, recently held in Vancouver, Canada. Viewers have access to all videos and slides from 34 hours of the conference proceedings. Those who register can also download a free, 14-day trial of FME Desktop.

:: Events

Tips, Tactics, and New Tools to Ensure Successful BIM Projects
July 10, 2014
1 p.m. EST
This webinar will look at two recent building information modeling (BIM) case studies: The new World Trade Center building in Manhattan and a large chemical plant in the northeastern U.S. Read more »

ESRI International User Conference 2014
July 14–18, 2014
San Diego Convention Center, San Diego, California
This conference for GIS professionals promises five days of innovative best practices, inspirational tech demos, and hands-on learning. Read more »

Advanced Design and Manufacturing Impact Forum 2014
August 17–20, 2014
Buffalo, New York
The Advanced Design & Manufacturing Impact Forum introduces a new ASME program focusing on the intersection of advanced design and advanced manufacturing in industrial and consumer applications. Read more »

For a complete list of CAD meetings, conferences, training sessions, and more, check out our calendar of events on Are you hosting an event that you would like to include in our calendar? Submit details at least two weeks in advance to

:: What's New at

IMAGINiT Tricks Tutorial: Manage Files with Autodesk Vault Mirror
Use the Vault Mirror utility to retrieve files to a dedicated folder. Watch the video »

By the Revit Users, for the Revit Users, Part 2
The Revit Technology Conference showcases technologies and workflows that give AEC users a better look at their projects, both as they are now and as they will be in the future. Read more »

PTC Creo 3.0 Includes Game-Changing Multi-CAD Data Handling
New Unite technology said to be the first to allow users to open foreign CAD formats in their native environment without need for additional software, as well as export data in those same formats. Read more »

About the Author: Robert Green

Robert Green

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