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Exchanging Files with Subs

Most offices sub out portions of the work to others. Working with other firms that are developing CAD files can be a challenge. They may have differing standards and methods for production.

I have found that I need to keep them in mind when I develop my CAD Standard. I want them to be effective and productive and deliver the files the way I need them. I may not be able to dictate how they do their work, not may I even want too.

Here are a couple of concepts that I put into play as I review my standard to keep a balanced approach toward my subs.

Don’t make their job harder.

I need to have my files created in such a way that I can work with them and they blend into me set, but I do not want to make their job harder. I want to measure the effect of my dictates so that I eliminate their pain points that are not really important. They still need to realize that I do have a standard that I want followed, but I need to be flexible on some items while maintaining a hard line on the critical issues. Out of the 27 areas that my standard covers I have deemed 10 of them critical.

It is not my job to make their job easier.

I need to keep them focused on complying with my standard. I want the files to be delivered in a specific format. It is their job to achieve that goal. If they want to work with me – they need to strive to comply. I have to comply when my client demands a specific standard. My subs need to realize that I am the client.

Agree on the file delivery format and stick to it.

If you are working in ADT and they only have AutoCAD, then define what you will provide to them and what they will provide to you. I like to define what I am going to give them. If they cannot work with it (after we agree) then it is their problem, not mine. I also want them to deliver consistently in the format I need.

All of this does not mean that I become a CAD Tyrant. I need to be cordial and flexible and get the job done. What I don’t want to do is take on extra work that does not pay the bills. All of us are familiar with the hours that are wasted trying to exchange files.