Adopting a Data Management Solution

The idea of adopting a Data Management Solution seems to have a stigma of being cumbersome and overtly challenging. Most companies evaluating software to help manage their data, really share similar problems. As we present SOLIDWORKS PDM hundreds of times per year, these 3 come up almost every conversation.

#1- “My data is in bad shape, I have to get it cleaned up before we use tools like this”.
#2- “Our Processes need to be evaluated before we are ready for a data management solution”.
#3- “We are so busy, we really don’t have the bandwidth to implement a tool like this”.

Let’s explore the real issue behind each of these objections.  Isaac Asimov once said “Your assumptions are your windows on the world. Scrub them off every once in a while, or the light won’t come in.”

#1- “My data is in bad shape, I have to get it cleaned up before we use tools like this”.

Acknowledging that mistakes in the past have affected the quality of your data is important. The good news is, you can stop! To stop making those mistakes, something has to change, otherwise, you’ll just continue to create more poor quality data. Once you decide enough is enough, you know there will be a good amount of work going into addressing your problem. If you’re going to make a change, why not put that effort into a long-term solution? SOLIDWORKS Data Management Solutions will have built-in tools that make it easy to identify and fix your inconsistent data. So not only are you moving ahead with a long-term solution that will ultimately make a difference but you’re also being handed tools to help repair the past.

#2- “Our processes need to be evaluated before we are ready for a data management solution.”

Like a lot of things in life, there is never going to be a “good time” for things that you know are going to be labor intensive. It’s crucial that Data Management Solutions be configured to your unique processes. Your processes and your business goals will grow and change over time and it’s important to have that flexibility with your data. The environment you start with today will not look the same a year from now. Data management solutions provide opportunities for you to refine your process at a much faster rate. Many of these tools offer automation that can take some of the more mundane parts of your process like PDF creation or ERP data entry and make them automatic. One of the most underrated benefits is better and more frequent communication between stakeholders. Data Management Solutions are often described as “communication and collaboration” tools, although they rarely get credit for that.

#3- “We are so busy, we really don’t have the bandwidth to implement a tool like this”.

Implementing a data management solution does take time and resources. It’s very easy to overlook the time savings created by communicating and collaborating better. Time is also given back because mistakes are less frequent, reducing re-work. It is usually very easy to see time savings for many different groups. It’s better to think of this as a shift in resources and bandwidth versus another time burden.

Don’t let these 3 misconceptions stop you from making a decision to fix the problem. Each of these can overcome to allow for a smooth path forward. And let this sink in, you will never be in better shape than you are today… until you make a change to a data management. So let’s scrub those windows together and let the light in!