Tom Salomone has more than 17 years of experience matching computer aided design and computer-aided engineering requirements to computing solutions. He is currently worldwide segment marketing manger for Lenovo®. He shares his thoughts here on the importance of refreshing your workstation.
DE: Some design engineers are given the same computers as everyone else in the company. Why should companies invest in professional workstations for their design engineers?
TS: Design and creation activities are critical to your success. They represent your competitive advantage. This starts with you, the engineer who conceives the idea and the design. It also includes the methods you use to design it, the software you use and the hardware that runs the software. Also very important, is how fast you design and create, as you can’t afford to get behind the competition, or miss a critical due date. All these things combine to give you a creative and innovative competitive edge. Both creation and schedules are critical elements of success, and workstations are a key element of this.
TS: Nothing is stagnant in this world, and this is true for the world of design and creativity. For example, new features are constantly being added to your design and the design is being shared in new ways using software like product lifecycle management. Designers learn more from organizations like manufacturing and adapt their designs according to the latest technology trends available. In addition, the software they use changes, new revisions come out, new fixes and even additional software features all need to be taken into account. All of this results in larger 3D models being created. Large files of just three years ago are considered average today. It is estimated that 3D files double in size every two to three years. Larger files and applications take longer to process in the CPU and graphics card; and they take more memory, and more storage. This happens gradually, so many designers don’t notice it changing. We see this change as our systems growing slower when, in fact, the models and applications have gotten larger.
TS: Even if design engineers are only about 33% more productive doing their design work on a new workstation and only do design work a third of the day, the ROI on a new workstation is less than six months. That’s a conservative estimate. It’s a simple calculation, depending on the engineer’s salary, the cost of the workstation and the time saved. If anyone looks at it, they’ll see they’re definitely going to get the ROI fast.
Download the new Desktop Engineering white paper, “Workstations: Now is the Time to Upgrade” here. The free, 9-page paper explains the benefits and costs of upgrading vs. the status quo.
This post was sponsored by Lenovo and Intel.