CAD Manager's Newsletter (#367)

12 Jul, 2016 By: Cadalyst Staff

Classic CAD Manager: Steer Your CAD Management Career

The better you understand your strengths — and how they can help your company — the more effective and valued you will be.

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 September 25, 2013.

In recent years, I've noticed the CAD/BIM (building information modeling) manager's job description is evolving — and not for the better. It seems expectations are ever increasing, employers are becoming more demanding, and there is less time to get the job done. And I've noticed an unsettling trend among senior management teams who view CAD/BIM management as something that takes billable hours away from an otherwise billable occupation such as architect, engineer, or designer.

As these changes have taken root, I've heard more CAD managers complain of lower job satisfaction, with many asking the question, "Should I even be doing CAD management at all?" I can't tell you how much hearing this question saddens me because, like you, I have a passion for CAD management and I understand how much CAD managers can help their companies.

Before you consider leaving CAD management, please try implementing some strategies for raising your worth in the eyes of senior management. In this issue of the CAD Manager's Newsletter, I'll pass along career advice and action items that are based on my own experiences. They can help you advance your career while you go about your day-to-day CAD management activities. Here goes.

Analysis: What Got You the Job?

Before we talk about how to better manage your career, let's take a step back and examine how you got the job in the first place. In almost all conversations with CAD managers I've had over the years, the following factors hold true:

We are technologists (engineers, architects, designers, etc.) We are comfortable with software (in fact, understanding it is easy for us) We are seen as the answer man or woman (people ask us questions) We are the fix-it man or woman (things stop working when we're gone).

The picture that emerges is of a competent, take-charge person who figures things out, makes things work, explains difficult concepts to users, and generally keeps production on track. In short, CAD managers are invaluable to the companies they support, even if that fact isn't understood by everyone around them (more on that later).


CAD managers have a skill set that makes them invaluable to their companies — and that's a message you have to share with your upper management teams.
CAD managers have a skill set that makes them invaluable to their companies — and that's a message you have to share with your upper management teams.


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:: Resources

Presentations from Graphics Processing Unit (GPU) Conference Published Online
NVIDIA has made more than 500 tutorials, talks, and keynotes from this year's GPU Technology Conference (GTC) available for on-demand viewing. GTC 2016 showcased topics including artificial intelligence and deep learning, virtual reality, self-driving cars, and accelerated computing. Site visitors must register to create a MyGTC Account before viewing.

:: What's New at

Bentley Boosts ContextCapture Capabilities
Infrastructure solutions provider believes reality capture technology holds big promise for AEC projects. Read more »

IMAGINiT Tricks Tutorial: Explore the Presentation File in Inventor 2017
See how to properly create an exploded view of an assembly that will include the animation of the parts and a camera simultaneously, and learn about the new IPN file features for 2017. Read more »

Creating a Cut–Fill Exhibit in Civil 3D
Curtis Smith, a civil engineering specialist, showcases a few very useful tools for working with AutoCAD Civil 3D surfaces. Watch the video »

Creating a Conceptual Mass in Revit
Pierre Derenoncourt walks viewers through a modeling example in the conceptual massing environment in Revit. Watch the video »

AutoCAD Fraction Facts
In AutoCAD, there is much more to stacked fractions than meets the eye. Watch this video tip from Cadalyst and Autodesk Technical Evangelist Lynn Allen to learn all the ins and outs of stacking fractions — you'll be an AutoCAD fraction expert before you know it! Watch the video »

IMAGINiT Tricks Tutorial: Boost Your Efficiency with Assembly Codes for Catalog and Footprint Lookup in AutoCAD Electrical
By using the assembly codes in both the Default_Cat.mdb and the Footprint_Lookup.mdb, you can quickly provide assemblies with the correct BOM information and the correct footprint on the panel layout. Read more »

User Profile: The Relationship Builder
Christine Massoud knows that to make a big project run smoothly, people skills are just as essential as software skills. Read more »

About the Author: Cadalyst Staff

Cadalyst Staff

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