CAD Manager's Newsletter (#368)

27 Jul, 2016 By: Cadalyst Staff

Classic CAD Manager: Update Your CAD Management Plan

Is your office in the midst of a summertime slowdown? Don't twiddle your thumbs — use that downtime to evaluate tasks, problems, and your methods of coping with them.

Editor's note: Until Robert Green returns, we'll be revisiting a few classic CAD Manager columns and their timeless advice. This column was originally published on July 11, 2012.

Well, unless you're in the southern hemisphere, it's summer again. Lots of people are on vacation, and the frenetic pace of the office tends to slow down as a result. Why not take advantage of this time to assess and adjust your CAD management plan?

In this installment of the CAD Manager's Newsletter, I'll give you a checklist for exactly what to do during the summer slowdown. Here goes.

Review Your Circumstances and Your Plan

First things first: What is your CAD management master plan? Is it written down? If not, do you have a master plan floating around in your brain? Or are you living the worst-case scenario: You lack a plan altogether, and simply scurry from one daily disaster to the next?

Be honest in your responses to these questions so you know where to start revising — or creating — your CAD management plan. If you don't have any plan at all, you've clearly got a lot of work to do. Conversely, if you have a plan that's well laid out, you can still benefit from a thorough review of how you're working.

No matter what kind of plan you have currently, the goal is to think through what you're doing, determine what you're doing wrong, and find more effective ways to accomplish your tasks. Sounds easy, doesn't it? Actually doing it, however, requires some action steps on your part, which we'll explore next.

Take Notes

To understand what you're doing currently and identify weak points in your processes, write down the typical activities that CAD management entails for you, including the following:

  • Tasks that vex you daily, weekly, monthly, yearly
  • Personnel problems (standards violators, etc.)
  • User productivity barriers
  • Hardware/software/IT problems
  • Budget problems (inability to fund improvements, etc.).

As you write down these items, a clear picture of where you are wasting your time will start to emerge. What do I mean by that? Consider the following examples, based on the list above. Read more »

:: Resources

ClearEdge3D Offers Guide for BIM Managers
Site visitors who register with ClearEdge3D can download a free building information modeling (BIM) guide. "The BIM Manager's Guide to As-Built Modeling" includes information on as-built modeling workflows, tips for as-built modeling projects, and more.

:: What's New at

AutoCAD's New One-Stop Dimensioning Tool
If you're still doing dimensioning the old-fashioned way, it's time to change your ways and use the one-stop shop instead! This video tip from Cadalyst and Lynn Allen will show you the amazing new dimensioning tool that will save you plenty of clicks — and time. Watch the video »

Apply Material and Visibility Parameters in Revit
This tutorial uses the example of a gusset plate to demonstrate two ways to apply material parameters, and more. Watch the video »

Add Custom Dimension Styles to Your AutoCAD Drawings
Learn how to work with linear, aligned, and angular dimensions, and create your own dimension styles. Watch the video »

Autodesk Launches LIVE to Democratize Revit Visualization
New web service helps AEC professionals with no visualization expertise create immersive, interactive 3D visualizations from Revit models. Read more »

About the Author: Cadalyst Staff

Cadalyst Staff

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Lynn Allen

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