Searching in Enterprise: It’s Not Only to Find That BRACKET
The search capabilities in SolidWorks Enterprise PDM are widely under utilized. Users tend to stick with older habits and methods that worked before mainly due to experiences outside of this PDM system. I’d like to briefly introduce five uses that might go beyond the typical usage of what users tend to expect.
No. 1 – It IS for finding that bracket
If you have the luxury of dual monitors, or even if you do not, the search in Enterprise works great with a running instance of SolidWorks. Whether you’re trying to promote reuse of earlier designs or searching through standard or purchased parts, the search window has complete drag-and-drop capabilities into SolidWorks. After bringing up a list of qualified parts, you can now add to your assembly from the Enterprise Complete Search.
No. 2 – Overview of Engineering Change Orders
Every company encounters a time when modifications need to occur to their CAD data. Managers typically rely on reports, e-mail chains, phone conversations and other means to know where projects currently stand. In SolidWorks Enterprise PDM, you can quickly browse your digitized ECOs for a live view of how many open Engineering Change Orders your staff are currently processing. Likewise, as an engineer, you may wish to review Change Orders pending for a current or future project.
No. 3 – Quickly pulling up a list of files
By virtue, the search in enterprise assumes wild cards when items are not placed between quotes. This works out great when you want pull a list of files one might receive in an e-mail or even written out on a change notices.
One scenario might be that you receive an e-mail stating: “Per our meeting this morning, we need to take a look at docs SW-100400, SW-201788, SW-301765 prior to release.” By copying this text into the filename search portion of Solidworks Enterprise PDM, we can remove the commas, add spaces, and have a list of the files we need to address at our disposal as opposed to performing a search on each document one at a time.
No. 4 – Same search engine for all file types
It is not uncommon for your organization’s projects to utilize files outside of purely SolidWorks CAD data. By utilizing the SolidWorks Enterprise PDM data card which is applied to all files, we can now have the same search functionality for all files whether they are a PDF, DWG, SolidWorks file, jpeg, or any other file type. This allows very quick allocation of files when working by product name, description, or even project with a single search.
No. 5 – Vacation Preparedness
When working within SolidWorks Enterprise PDM, taking ownership prevents multiple people from trying to modify the same file. That’s great news for ensuring that work on a particular project is not lost due to an accidental overwrite. However, there are times when you may be gone for a planned extended period. To prevent angry calls and e-mails, you can search for files that you have checked out and from the search window, check the files back into the system.
Stay tuned for future posts on SolidWorks Enterprise PDM.