How CAM Software Adds Value to a Product

Improving Delivery Speed, Service with CAM Software

Adding Value with Service and Product Improvements from Optimation

Now that we’ve discussed initiating a Lean Manufacturing Project, we’ll turn to deconstructing the sometimes mysterious — often foreign — components of lean thinking as it relates to the CAD/CAM process.  With these tools you can leverage your own knowledge of your business to make improvements that will, in hindsight, seem obvious.

So, let’s get started.

What is Value?

The first concepts to tackle are “value” and the “value stream.”  Intuitively we know what value means for ourselves and our products.  We know we have value as a person, spouse, employee, committee member because we bring knowledge and talents to our relationships and roles.  And we know our products have value — equivalent to the purchase price — because our customers buy them for that price!  But what do the lean manufacturing experts mean by “value,” and how does it apply to CNC Nesting and the CAD/CAM world? 

Value is defined by the customer.  A product has no value abscent the customer.  It is the product the customer will buy because it can solve their specific problem in the way they think is best for the price they are willing to pay.  An Ugg® pair of boots has the values of comfort and protection from inclement weather for the user.  In contrast, an every day tennis shoe will serve quite nicely for someone just wanting to kill a bug without getting slimed.  The perception of the degree of usefulness — how well it does the intended utility — of the product, in this case the boot or shoe, to the customer is ultimately its “value.”

In the above example, the product (boots or shoes) demonstrated the value (weather protection or bug-squishing).  However, there are many other attributes that give value to a product beyond its utilitarian value.

Product Value

When talking about the physical good, we can look at these marketed, additional attributes.

  • The quality of the product (Moen’s® “Buy it for looks. Buy it for life” campaign)
  • The uniqueness or rarity (from designer clothes to designer cars)
  • The durability (how long is this furnace going to last?)
  • The flexibility (how many games can my X-Box® play?)

Service Value

Then there are the services associated with producing, supporting, and delivering that product that can either add or detract from the value.

  • The speed of delivery (overnight or in three months)
  • The quality of support (need I say more?)
  • The convenience of purchase, support, use

Lean manufacturing tells us that every step in the production process must add value to the product.  It must serve the customer’s perception of need – which admittedly, may be multiple, conflicting, and/or changing.

How do these concepts apply to the CAD/CAM process and specifically part programming and cnc nesting?

 Product Value | Quality of the Product

With the right automatic nesting software products and parts can be designed and made production-ready simultaneously.  This is Concurrent Engineering. This minimizes, if not eliminates, the trial-and-error approach of design/manufacture and improves the ultimate quality of the part.  An additional bonus is the reduction in the time-to-market for new products.

Service Value | Speed of Delivery  – Better Throughput

Here is where automatic and reliably high-performing nesting software can separate any manufacturer from the pack with an exceptional competitive advantage.  From lighting-fast nesting to automatic part programming and order input in seconds, quality automatic nesting software can make a huge difference.  How?  By cutting programming time to 1/10th of normal.  By cutting nesting time to a fraction of what manual or semi-manual operations take.  By reducing or eliminating order entry time into the CAM product.  And by keeping machine downtime to a bare minimum.  All of these tools enable the user to get more product out the door faster and with fewer customer-satisfaction issues.

Here are just a few ways to add rapid delivery to the value of your product.

For a more detailed discussion of part-to-market processes or throughput visit us online.

Service Value | Quality of Support

 The best support call is the one that doesn’t come, because the customer is happy.  To which I’d point back to the above discussion about speedy delivery and quality products.  But there are those occasions when the perceived customer value of the product does not match their expectations.  Now what?

That’s when your nesting software either shines or fails.  It should be able to help you turn on a dime and meet the customer’s needs by managing revisions, hot parts, rework, change orders, or anything that needs to be handled quickly, accurately, and automatically.  And it should be able to have the production level of support and flexibility of product to help you “think outside the box” to meet even the most unusual of customer requirements.

How about you?

In what ways do you add value to your product?  What tools do you use to accomplish this?  What challenges do you encounter?  Join the conversation – let us know.

Notice: This work is licensed under a BY-NC-SA. Permalink: How CAM Software Adds Value to a Product

One comment on “How CAM Software Adds Value to a Product

  1. Pingback: CNC Automatic Nesting Software | Six Ways to Eliminate Waste | Nesting Software | Optimation Blog

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