CAD Manager's Newsletter (#219)

9 Jun, 2009 By: Robert Green

Lay Down the Law on CAD Standards, Part 2

A thorough file cleanup will show users you mean business
and set the tone for standard practices.

In the last installment of the CAD Manager's Newsletter, I started a discussion about getting people to work using standard practices. What I refer to as laying down the law usually is an exercise in drawing attention to CAD standards so that everyone understands their importance and understands that you're serious about their enforcement.

Laying down the law can rub some users the wrong way, but if you don't get serious about standards, who will? In this installment, I'll give you some good first-strike ideas for getting started. Here goes.

Formulating Your Plan
You can lay down the law only when you're organized and have a logical plan of attack. The key steps I outlined in Part 1 of this article were:

  • Make sure applicable standards are current
  • Get management's blessing and support
  • Communicate what you'll be doing
  • Decide what will be your first-strike action items
  • Develop a training plan
  • Deputize power users to help you
  • Be sure to complete these action items before you proceed with your first-strike attack. 
    Read more »

    :: Establishing a Rewards Program (CAD Manager's Toolbox)

    Acknowledge those who help you -- motivating your users will bring even greater benefits.

    Do you have power users who help you conduct training and technical support? Do you have people who help you with plotter maintenance? Do you have CAD users who bring you productivity-boosting ideas? If so, say thank you by establishing a rewards program.

    Setting up a simple rewards program for users who assist you with your CAD management duties is an inexpensive way to build CAD group enthusiasm while helping you get your job done more easily. A rewards program has no firm rules, but here are a few ideas to get started.  Read more »

    :: Resources

    New Web Site for Everything AutoCAD

    Autodesk alerts CAD Manager's Newsletter readers to AutoCAD Exchange, a central location for everything AutoCAD. The site is a gateway to tips, tutorials, discussion forums, blogs, CAD management resources, and much more.

    PTC Augments Resources for SMBs

    Check out the latest content on PTC's Resource Center for Small and Medium Businesses, which includes tips on how to improve collaboration, reduce production scrap amounts, and increase virtual prototypes. The Resource Center also provides access to articles, reports, and webcasts.

    NextComputing Whitepaper Covers Mobile Computing Costs

    NextComputing is offering a free whitepaper titled "How to Reduce Cost for New Technology Solutions," which includes information on eliminating costs associated with introductions of new mobile computing products.

    MSC.Software Shares Technical Presentations

    MSC.Software is offering technical presentations from the educational track of its Virtual Product Development User Conference, an event for users of its simulation and analysis products. This year's event theme was "Accelerating productivity in a slowing economy."

    New Whitepaper: 3D Printer Buyer's Guide

    Know which questions to ask before you purchase a 3D printer! A new whitepaper from Z Corporation, "3D Printer Buyer's Guide," outlines the benefits of owning a 3D printer and offers step-by-step advice for evaluating the long-term costs of various models and how to ensure you select the model that best suits your needs.

    :: Events

    What's New in Revit MEP 2010?

    June 11, 2009
    San Jose, California
    Join Ideate to learn more about the new features and benefits in Autodesk Revit MEP 2010. Read more»

    East Bay Civil 3D User Group

    June 16, 2009
    Oakland, California
    In this presentation on AutoCAD Civil 3D, Ideate will outline the various options for sharing project data and the pros and cons of each method. Read more »

    For a complete list of CAD meetings, conferences, training sessions, and more, check out our calendar of events on

    :: What's New at

    Sign on the Digital Line
    Expedited workflows and significant cost savings are motivating AEC firms to adopt digital signature technology. Read more

    Cadalyst Labs Review: AutoCAD 2010
    The times, they are a-changin' -- and when it comes to new 2D parametric drawing, change can be very, very good. Read more

    Cadalyst Partners with Tenlinks for News Delivery
    Agreement brings timely, comprehensive news coverage to visitors.
    Read more