MANAGING CAD/CAM/CAE


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Training and education


Training is one of the most neglected areas in implementation and use of CAD/CAM/CAE. One reason is the relative ease with which a training budget can be slashed and consequent 'savings' produced. Nearly all advanced manufacturing technologies require a high level of training since not only are the technologies complex in themselves, but often their users have had little formal education related to them. Cutting back on training can invariably be equated to cutting back on productivity increases. It is very difficult to learn about a new technology entirely on-the-job, since what is needed is as much an understanding of the basic processes involved, as just operating knowledge.

Initially no one in the company will know anything at all about CAD/CAM/CAE or about a new CAD/CAM/CAE function. Users have to learn to use it and middle management must learn how to apply it to projects. The CAD/CAM/CAE Manager and the CAD/CAM/CAE team need to learn a wide variety of new skills. Top management must learn enough to understand what can realistically be done with CAD/CAM/CAE within the company, what can be expected from application of different levels of resources, and how to manage the effects its introduction will have on the overall operations of the company.

Training and education are necessary during the CAD/CAM/CAE selection process, before the system or upgrade arrives, during the period immediately after installation, and then as long as the use of CAD/CAM/CAE techniques within the company is expanded and new users are introduced to the system.

Ongoing training is necessary partly because improved versions of the system will be installed and must be understood, and partly because after using the system for a certain time, users are capable of using it in a different, more productive way. People throughout the company must learn how to handle the way that other systems in the company are interfaced to the CAD/CAM/CAE system. In addition, training is necessary to be able to further extend the use of CAD/CAM/CAE throughout the company.






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Page last modified on February 11, 2000
Copyright 1999, 2000 by John Stark