While attending SOLIDWORKS World 2019 in Dallas, Texas, I had the opportunity to interview Alex Garrett from Nu Skin Enterprises. These guys were one of our first customers to go live with SOLIDWORKS Manage in 2018. As a software vendor, we always hope that our products provide impactful value to our customers. Interviewing Alex and learning about his experience solidified that ambition.
Let me start here. Alex was not initially excited about using SOLIDWORKS Manage. Like many of you, he was worried that a management tool would add data entry overhead and more plain old work, however, as its team looked at what SOLIDWORKS Manage could provide beyond basic document management, Alex’s interest was peaked. The company had struggled with efficiently sharing SOLIDWORKS models as well as its complete product bills of materials (BOMs), including models, specifications, manufacturing instructions and test results.
Alex shared a story we can all relate to that I’ll summarize, hopefully without damaging its essence. Several years ago, Nu Skin began getting problem reports about one of its products. A warning signal was triggering while the product was still functional. It was more of an annoyance than an operational problem, but the Nu Skin team was determined to find the root cause. They pinpointed the source only after months of testing. It was an improperly spec’d resistor. Had the team been able to see how the product specification had changed between product versions, the whole mishap could have possibly been avoided.
With SOLIDWORKS Manage in place, the Nu Skin team can now track full product bills of materials down to each minor version, ensuring complete traceability to even the smallest changes, like a resistor.
When asked what he would recommend to those considering the benefits of deploying SOLIDWORKS Manage, Alex suggested a staged deployment. The Nu Skin team began with basic document control and bills of materials (BOMs). Once the users were operating with this first set of features, they progressed to process controls. Alex also encouraged loading data as quickly as possible. As soon as a sizable volume of documentation was available in SOLIDWORKS Manage, they began seeing the benefits of visibility. The company’s only regret was not having loaded documents sooner. Today with SOLIDWORKS Manage, the company’s engineers no longer have to chase down files saved on another engineer’s desktop.
The Nu Skin team continues expanding its use of SOLIDWORKS Manage and are looking forward to deploying the project management features to get tighter control of its development projects.
If your team is ready to expand into full product bills of materials, enhanced process control and project management, review the content available on www.solidworks.com/manage and reach out to your local Value-Added Reseller.