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 J U N E , 2 0 0 6
   I N   T H I S   I S S U E

Calculating Return on Effort - How small updates equal major savings

CAD Manager - your pain, everyone's gain

Sidetracked Users - When they should give up and move on - some problems may never get fixed

Survey Says - Do you DWF or PDF? 


  A R T I C L E S

Calculating Return on Effort - How Small updates equal Major savings

CAD Managers are called on to do many things.  One area that they constantly need to focus on is productivity.  Small adjustments to your environment can reap big rewards over the course of time.  But we have to weight the benefit against the cost.

Applying productivity tools and tweaks to AutoCAD is always a good idea because the return is spread over a long period of time and with many users.

“… when you are going to tweak an application to improve its throughput, you want an application that will generalize and be of long term value -- fixing an application that will only be used one time, or which is of interest to a very limited audience, reduces the payoff associated with the effort you're putting in.” - Joe St. Sauver, Ph.D., Director of User Services and Network Applications at the University of Oregon Computing Center.

These adjustments may be large, like upgrading to the next release of software or buying a new plotter.  Some may come in smaller forms like a new AutoLISP routine, making a refinement in the CAD Standard or just fixing a bad block that is causing problems to multiple files.

Whatever form these adjustments take it most often includes the process of defining the “Return On Effort” (ROE).  I use Return on Effort because most often the CAD Manager does not have to spend money to save money.  So there is no investment in dollars, yen or pesos.  It is just a matter of effort being expended (albeit manhours)

Most of us go through ROE calcs in our lives.  We may use them to justify the effort of getting off the couch and doing some exercise to loose weight.  Is it worth the effort? 

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CAD Manager - your pain, everyone's gain

Whenever the CAD Manager has to work through an issue or troubleshoot a system it takes time and sometimes PAIN.  This pain is the cost of being a CAD Manager and it comes with the territory.  We, as CAD Managers, are use to it.  Taking on someone else's troubles and getting them back into productive work. 

Working on other peoples problems is what CAD Management is all about.  It can get taxing at times and sometimes we think that it is not worth it.  But it is.

Your pain equals much gain for all of your users and clients.  Each time you work through a stubborn problem then it relieves the office from going through the same pain. 

Here are some tips to maximize your efforts...

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Sidetracked Users - When they should Give Up and Move On

I have noticed that some users get fixated on problems and spend hours of time on some small annoying problem that is bothering them.  They discover or stumble into some particular rough spot and begin to wonder why the system is not operating the way they think it should.  They often come across some real failure in the software or their file that halts their progress.

Users can sometime get derailed into trying to fix their own problems.  If there is a CAD Manager available - it is their job, no the users.  The users need to stay productive and on task and not get sidelined into troubleshooting.

Here are some thoughts about getting them back on track...

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May 2006 - Survey Says

Apparently DWF is not king in sharing CAD generated data.  PDF is on top by a long shot!

While a large number (35%) of you responded that you do actual create DWF files, you also stated that you overwhelmingly (87% - see below) do not use them for data exchange.  An amazing number (97%) say they are making PDF files.  Boy - Adobe must love that?  or are they using other tools?  (Maybe I should have asked)


See the results from May 2006

Take the June Survey - Where do you get training?

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CADD Manager Journal is a publication of the Core Technology Group
Editor: Mark W. Kiker © 2006 by CTG.


This time around... 

Effort - it takes a lot to be a CAD Manager and there is no limit to the time and effort you could spend digging deeply into the CAD issues of your firm.

This issue talks to some of the issues related to the amount of  efforts you should be exerting in your office.

Mark W. Kiker, Editor


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There are several places to get training and all of them are good.  Do you get trained by others?  Do you train yourself?

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