CAD Manager's Q&A: Are CAD Managers Undervalued?

24 Aug, 2005 By: Robert Green

How can I convince my upper management that CAD management is a worthwhile job? Right now they seem to view me as overhead.

Robert Green answers: The only way to convince anyone that something is necessary is to prove it. In the CAD manager’s role, you simply have to show your management that you're providing a worthwhile function for the company. A worthwhile function is one that pays for itself and returns profit to the company. Put another way: You have to prove that you can pay for yourself!

If you can demonstrate that your work to standardize methodologies has resulted in cost savings, that’s one example. If you can demonstrate faster, smoother project workflow that leads to higher profits, that’s another example. You’ll have to think about some time savings you’ve generated and then convert the time into dollars to establish these facts, but the time spent will get you on management’s radar, so it is worthwhile.

Another way to generate managerial support is to partner with project managers or department managers to solve problems that cost them time and money. Become a time-saving, problem-solving CAD ninja, and watch management’s perspective on CAD management change for the better. And along the way, get the project/department managers to let you bill some of your time to the jobs you’ve impacted positively and watch your overhead time shrink.

Think about the problem-solving, cost-saving metrics I’ve outlined, and your positive contribution will become evident to management. In fact, if you’re not careful, you might be called to do even more CAD management rather than less.

Submit your questions to Robert Green at

About the Author: Robert Green

Robert Green

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