Dialog Box June 2008

31 May, 2008 By: Cadalyst Staff

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To Be [Standard] or Not to Be
The main problem with a written standard, as discussed in "Creating Standards, Part 1" (CAD Manager's Newsletter, May 14, 2008), is that once written it becomes difficult or rather tedious to update. A second thing is that it leaves implementation up to the user. Most new users come out of college with the idea that they are the experts in CAD because they have the latest training. In reality, they have no idea how to apply the tools in an efficient and productive way. A good standard should be set up in the company menu system and customized CAD tools. If you use the company menu, then you use the company standard.
—Dave Alexander
Kelowna, British Columbia, Canada

Company standards sound good and really were at one point, but now the ability to interact via drawings with anyone using CAD nationwide has brought about the National CAD Standards. These guidelines take a lot of the time and effort out of local company hands by just adopting them. Small companies may think they are overkill, but using them and being acknowledged as compliant can increase your ability to take on more projects and turn into a large company.

—Charles Dodds
Oklahoma City, Oklahoma

How to Outpace the Competition
Just as the hiker's strategy is to outrun his buddy to get away from the bear (see "Survival Tips for the Digital Jungle"), companies are realizing they need to use every available resource to get ahead of the competition, and they need to build speed into their product development cycles. Procter & Gamble is definitely a gold standard when it comes to institutionalizing Open Innovation. At NineSigma, we are seeing companies get more aggressive with their efforts to bring in external technologies. Many companies are finding all kinds of problems that could use an outside perspective, from reducing the fat in chocolate to creating solar power systems that recharge automotive electric batteries.

The innovation race being redefined as global technology resources can now -- or dare I say, must -- be factored into one's innovation strategy. The key is to know how to best locate those external resources and do so quickly because, as in the above example, the bear is not slowing down and neither is your buddy (competitor).

—Bronwyn Monroe
NineSigma, Cleveland, Ohio

About the Author: Cadalyst Staff

Cadalyst Staff

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