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  • Vikas Dayal

Leveraging CAD with Data

Updated: Jun 15, 2021

In a world driven by data, gathering, analysing and using the data helps us make more informed decisions and plan better. The Engineering Design industry is no exception. Today’s mind-boggling advancements in engineering and design technology across the board, with AI, VR and AR taking the engineering and design technology to a new level.

The Problem

Harnessing the potential of newer Engineering Design software and pushing its limits, are the most common challenges for Engineering companies that have invested in the software/hardware to own such technology but have not invested enough time and effort to try and leverage this toolset that they own.

Unfortunately, most of the engineering design industry are using powerful CAD platforms merely as a production drawing creation tool.

Using a CAD program and adding all the metadata to these CAD models demands a lot of time and energy for creating the design data. Most often, this data is underutilized even after adding it to the models. P&ID data in a piping drawing, BIM information in architectural & structural 3D Models, Costing Data in 3D Models, Inter-component relationships in an assembly, motion simulation data, Assembly or component level Volumetric statistics, Texture, colour or appearance data, are some of the examples out of a sea of data contained and captured in a modern-day design data repository.

Even if designers manage to get past the challenges of data capture, the churn of data and the outputs generated create equally challenging conditions causing this data journey to be less successful than intended. Where companies should be getting a jump-start by optimally using the data, most are stuck in a hamster wheel of modelling and generating production drawings and they hardly ever explore the tools beyond that very basic functionality.


More and more software tools now provide numerous ways to explore and exploit all the intelligence being captured in the engineering design models. Almost every Engineering Design software has inbuilt tools to visualize the design data and provide valuable reports with structured visualization of the data.

Companies with a vision are investing in exploring and learning these new tools in the tool-chest and then in implementing a solution that gives their company an edge. Access to the toolset is not an issue, the bigger issue is the understanding and usage of the tools we already possess.

The solution lies in the awareness of what is and what can be. The vision to use the technology available at hand to elevate the output. The know-how and the will to learn and try. The data can be used to link information being pulled out from models and drawings to accounting systems, inventory systems, project planning and project management systems, ERP systems, quoting tools, sales management systems, design automation systems etc. and much much more.

Almost every Engineering Design system out there has an open API that allows you to extract information and integrate the Design systems with any of the above-mentioned systems. This ability to interface with various business systems within an organisation is heavily under-utilized. The overall lack of awareness about the possibilities of these Engineering design tools needs to be addressed.

If you would like to explore the possibilities of leveraging your existing CAD tools to tackle some or possibly all of your business workflows, or to help you make your business systems talk to each other, reach out to us.

Our panel of experts can analyse and propose solutions that could make you question yourself, why did you not think of this before!

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