CAD Manager's Newsletter (#168)14 Mar, 2007 By: Robert Green
Preparation prior to a software upgrade ensures a successful installation.
I had intended to go over some of the new AutoCAD 2008-based product features in this edition to time it with the software's impending release. However, as I looked through my email I noticed that a lot of the questions I'm getting aren't so much about a specific software package as they are about how to go about training for new software releases in general.
Therefore, I'm putting the AutoCAD 2008 product discussion on hold for an issue to present some tips I think are valuable for all CAD managers implementing new software no matter what the software title is. Here goes.
Identify, Demonstrate and Document
These steps must be taken before you install new software so you have a clear idea of what features you want to take advantage of (that's the identify part). Then you can show the features to the key players you'll need support from (that's the demo part), and finally, you can document the interest of the key parties to build support for adopting new software features (that's the document part).
CAD managers usually do a good job on the identifying part of the process and a decent job at demonstrating, while often ignoring the documentation part entirely. Yet each phase of the process is crucial because it identifies which new features are important while it builds political support among the upper management team, which you'll need anyway before you can proceed. If you undertake this step correctly, you're much more likely to have management's support during implementation and to get funding approval for training. Read more>>
We're rolling out 3D software in my company now and users are coming around to the new way of design. What kinds of items should I be concerned about now and how can I avoid making post-implementation errors in this new 3D world?
Robert Green replies: I started the answer to this question in the February 14 edition and continued in the February 28 edition of CAD Manager's Newsletter. I'll further expand on my answer now with some ideas for managing the inevitable staff changes that happen during and after 3D implementation.
When you finally reach the culmination of your 3D software implementation you'll notice that some things have changed with respect to your CAD staff. You may have been too busy during implementation to see the changes, but they happened, trust me. Below are some of my coping strategies that have always worked well. Read more>>
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