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Concurrent Engineering Blog

Design flexibility: 5 design challenges that mean you need it

Posted by Emma Rudeck on 01-Aug-2012 11:47:00

design flexibilityFirst of all, what is it we mean by design flexibility? Well, it’s having the capabilities to take you design, as it stands, and react to changes you need to make without impacting on the design integrity. Having tools that facilitate design flexibility mean you’re prepared for the challenges that come as part of product design. So, what are the 5 key challenges that mean you need flexibility in your design work?

#1 Unexpected design modification

As they develop from initial concepts into a detail parametric model, designs need to be changed. Yet, what if these changes are unanticipated? It increases your workload and makes it more challenging to finish designs in time and on budget. And, with 44% of engineers facing unanticipated changes in a recent project, it’s not an isolated challenge. With the percentage so high, you need to rely on your 3D CAD modelling tools to react when the unexpected happens.

#2 Changes made late in the design process

Even as deadlines loom, it’s often necessary to make modifications to your designs. Late-stage design changes are stressful: especially if they are very dramatic or there are many parts to the modification. Being able to handle late-stage changes  ease, through a responsive CAD tool, makes them more manageable and enhances design performance.  

#3 Importing design model 

Bringing in designs made in other CAD systems is necessary to reuse earlier design work. But, it’s often not made as simple as it could be. 49% of you find it difficult to import models from other CAD tools into your current system. Then, once you manage to get it across, 59% find it a challenge to modify imported designs.

#4 Designs made by others in your team

If you have to make 3D design alterations to designs made by others in your team, it can be difficult, even if you’re both using the same CAD tool. Everyone has their own particular way of approaching design work, so this can inhibit design flexibility.

#5 Changes to the team

It’s the middle of a project and key team members either leave the company or change to another team. Or additional people join and have to get up to speed with the project details. Over one-third of you have experienced changes to your team during a recent project.  Knowing that you have continuity in your 3D CAD tool is essential for smoothing over any team transitions.

Want to know how you can overcome the challenges restricting design flexibility? Take a look at the eBook: CAD and the Need for Design Agility

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