I recently hosted a webinar entitled “How to Manage Your Manufacturing Experience with TopSolid 7.” The goal of the webinar was to provide an overview of the ease in which a part can seamlessly move through the initial design phase, all the way to finished manufacturing, using only one powerful CAD/CAM solution—TopSolid 7. In other words, minimize the chaos of manufacturing. Considering the entire lifecycle of the part, as I did within this webinar, allowed me to very clearly show and articulate the incredible value of our solution.
The more I think about it, the more I believe this video should be viewed by your company’s key stakeholders sitting around a table together. Key personnel should be present including representatives from engineering, programming, the manufacturing floor and management, possessing both team oversight and fiscal responsibilities.
Before you hit play, ask yourself with your company’s stakeholders present in the room the following question: why does TopSolid even exist? What challenges are you experiencing as you manage the full lifecycle of your products from design to manufacturing? I suspect that the issues that will surface during this conversation might include:
- Managing Complexity – Manufacturing and product design have become increasingly complex and many CAD and CAM solutions on the market struggle with this ever-growing complexity.
- Too Many Systems – As manufacturing has become more and more complex, specialized software systems have been developed by dozens and dozens of software solution providers to manage the complexity. In short, maybe you need a solution that is really good at turning because your “main” CAD/CAM solution does not handle turning operations very well. Then, maybe you need another solution for 5-axis milling and yet another for mechanical design. The list goes on and on and before you know it, your team is saddled with multiple systems all in attempt to, hopefully, deliver the collective capabilities you require.
- Managing Chaos – Manufacturing is chaotic with many processes to be managed, including many changes and corrections along the way.
- System Integration Challenges – All these different software solutions don’t necessarily talk well to each other causing errors when pushing design changes, inefficiencies, downtime and many other undesirable outcomes.
- Costs Are Too High – Software maintenance costs alone can quickly become astronomical. Additionally, team members need to be trained on all these different systems incurring hefty costs in both training and downtime. These issues and others skyrocket your overall cost of ownership before you even realize it. This is not even mentioning the complexity of managing updates for all these different systems, broken integrations and the resulting expenditures of time, money and frustration.
- Not Enough Time to Innovate – Time and money spent needlessly managing patched together systems and processes result in a lot less time to do the fun stuff – designing the innovations and process improvements that deliver true value to your organization. And, let’s face it…innovation and improvements simply feel a lot better than wresting with patched together systems. There are no profits to be made when your valuable time is spent fixing a broken system or tending to a simple task. There is a lot of money to be made by innovating.
- Manufacturing Floor Communications – With all design and machine programming finalized, it is time to move toward hitting the start button. But operators, do you feel well prepared? Would automatically generated and automatically updated machine set up sheets be helpful?
- PDM – Without an effective PDM in place, your efficiency levels will suffer, error rates will be high and changes throughout the design and machining processes will be very difficult to manage. TopSolid 7 is a PDM-based solution that allows you to: (1) leverage accumulating knowledge and (2) reuse design and programming elements, saving a great deal of time so you can manage all your data and knowledge across your entire organization — the way it should be managed. In other words, with every project, your organizations gets smarter and better equipped to handle the next project.
- Change Management – Programmers, are you reliably notified when there is a change to the part design?
- Complex Programming – Is programming highly complex parts and operations easy, efficient and manageable?
The TopSolid solution was written from the ground up to be a complete design-to-manufacturing solution.
I invite you to sit back, watch and imagine how all your processes from design, to programming, to the manufacturing floor will be streamlined by TopSolid 7 – a fully integrated CAD/CAM solution. Imagine the money that will be saved. Maybe, most importantly, imagine all of the time you will have for the fun stuff that truly brings value to your company. Watch webinar
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