You are Paying Your Engineers to Reinvent the Wheel

93% of engineers say they’re reinventing the wheel – redrawing supplier parts in their CAD app

It’s safe to say, the world has the design for the wheel under control. We’ve been rolling since about 9000 BC, the original designs for the wheel date back to the late Neolithic period. That’s just an evolutionary notch more advanced than the caveman days. The wheel has been thoroughly reviewed, revised and the design has been formally stamped and finalized for thousands of years.

Unfortunately, we have proof that engineers are still working on the design for the wheel.

We asked designers at 500 Companies: “Do you ever recreate supplier parts in your CAD application?"

Yes: 93%
No: 7%

Engineers are recreating the wheel, by needlessly redrawing supplier parts

This statistic is staggering, engineers are wasting time drawing parts which someone else manufactures and sells. They are burning up design time, driving up the cost of their own designs and costing their company on the bottom line.

So why would engineers be “reinventing the wheel” in their CAD applications on a daily basis? Actually, they are reinventing much more than the wheel. Engineers are re-creating digital versions of supplier parts, both large and small. Everything from nuts and bolts, to springs, hydraulic cylinders, motors, drives, pullys and gears are being drawn by engineers to fit into their design. They do this because they can’t find the proper model of the supplier part to fit their application. Maybe the supplier only provides basic dimensions, and they are forced to redraw manually. Maybe the manufacturer doesn’t provide models in the correct format or maybe the engineer doesn’t have the right application to source the parts digitally.

No matter the reason, engineering manager’s everywhere will agree:
redrawing 3D supplier parts is a complete waste of time.

There is a much better way for engineers to source the parts they need. The easiest way, they can go online to the manufacturer website or an engineering PARTcommunity and get manufacturer certified models in their native format. A much more efficient method, used by many OEMs, is to utilize a strategic parts management (SPM) platform, like PARTsolutions. With SPM, engineers have millions of certified parts ready to configure and deploy to their CAD application. They can also check the parts in and out of their PLM. Pretty cool stuff.

Learn more: Download the full “Engineering Efficiency Report” and see exactly what engineers said about the 3D supplier parts they source and how they spend their design time.

Download the Engineering Design Efficiency Report