CAD Manager's Newsletter (#173)

22 May, 2007 By: Robert Green

Which CAD Tool Is Right for You? Part 4

Follow these simple guidelines, and you will make the right choice when selecting new CAD software for your company.

In the last three issues of CAD Manager's Newsletter, I've discussed evaluating CAD tools based on company needs and looked at examples to drive home the concept. (In fact, the case study discussions that dealt with the concept of technology avoidance even stirred up some great reader email!) So if you haven't had a chance to read the last three issues, I recommend that you read them now to get caught up on the tone of the discussion so that this installment will make sense to you.

In this final installment of the series, I'll give you some techniques you can use to help select the right CAD tools and learn how to blend those tools into your company's design culture. Here goes.

It's All About Need
Many companies start the discussion about selecting CAD tools with a "What CAD system should we buy?" mindset. In fact, they really should begin the selection process by addressing the question, "What do we do around here, and what tool would best help us do that?" By understanding what you actually do now and what your company is striving to do in the next few years, you can avoid a lot of errors.
Read more>>

:: CAD Manager's Q&A

Enforcing standards in my office is driving me nuts! Any ideas for making the process easier?

Robert Green replies:The topic of standards is always a problem, and I think enforcement is the worst part. Although I don't have a magic answer to make people behave as they should, I do have some general guidelines you can use, which I'll share here.

Stress production. The reason to follow standards is to ease production and make everything run more smoothly. Stress this concept while making sure your users know that you're all about productivity.Read more>>

Submit your questions to Robert Green

:: Resources

3D Design Handbook CAD Resources published Moving from 2D to 3D CAD for Engineering Design: Challenges and Opportunities ($20.95, 220 pages; $9.95 e-book), a practical guide for CAD and engineering managers and professionals in the design and manufacturing industries. The author encourages design managers to make the change from 2D to 3D by explaining the benefits of a 3D CAD tool and offering tips on evaluating 3D CAD software and avoiding potential pitfalls.


Send us the address of your favorite Web site or other resource and a few words about why you like it. If we publish it, we'll send you a Cadalyst t-shirt!

:: Events

AEC Technology Strategies 2007 Conference
June 7-8, 2007
Las Vegas, Nevada
ZweigWhite's AEC Technology Strategies 2007 Conference is the eighth annual information technology conference for business and IT leaders in architecture, engineering and construction. This event brings together all the AEC disciplines, gives equal time to the business and design issues driving technology, and involves both technology managers and business managers from AEC firms. Read more

Vibro-Acoustic Users Conference (VAUC 2007)
June 12-13, 2007
Cologne, Germany
ESI Group's second Vibro-Acoustic Users Conference (VAUC 2007) provides a unique opportunity for technical exchange among vibro-acoustic practitioners, researchers and applications experts. During this two-day event, attendees will have the opportunity to hear papers presented by major industry professionals and learn about the latest in vibro-acoustic software and simulation methods. Read more

Click here to view the complete calendar of events at