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Autodesk, Manufacturing

Connecting Engineering Design Data and Documentation

Utilizing Vaultra to allow Lemke Industrial Machine to focus on core tasks while enjoying the benefits of a secure and efficient cloud-based Vault Server.

Image of a draw bridge

The Customer

Lemke Industrial Machine LLC, established in 1973, started as a general machine shop supplying services to local businesses. Soon after its start, the firm began supplying gate hoists for dams. That success led to larger components, and soon the company was supplying machinery and operating equipment for locks. The company then entered the movable bridge market where the accumulated skillset and knowledge were applied to engineering and manufacturing machinery and operating equipment for bascule, lift, and swing bridges.

The Customer Challenge

Lemke Industrial Machine had historically used Microsoft One Drive and SharePoint to manage all their engineering data. Over time, it became clear that they needed more robust procedures and methodologies with which to manage their engineering design data and documentation. Project Data Management (PDM), Engineering Change Orders (ECO), and User Defined Properties nested in their design creation tools represented three of their top priorities to be addressed in a Product Documentation Management (PDM) system. As their organization has grown over the years, their projects have required an increased group of stakeholders, making it paramount that their document management system can keep all project participants connected with up-to-date project lifecycle status and all associated project data and documentation.

The Project Goals

  • Rules of engagement needed to be instituted to govern who, among their user base, has access to and permissions for certain actions that will affect the visibility, traceability, and accountability of all lifecycle data, documentation, and related CAD files.
  • Specific workflows needed to be implemented within the design of a new “object-based” document management system.
  • Lifecycle “states” would be used to define specific steps in the lifecycle process.
  • User adoption and training would be a high priority so that the new Autodesk Vault Pro system is used consistently by all stakeholders both in-house as well as those that are remote or onsite, so that project lifecycle protocols are consistently followed.
  • A numbering system would need to be put in place to ensure consistent file naming conventions in their vault for engineering data.
  • Metadata associated with vaulted documents or objects could be used as search criteria when searching for data, documents, CAD files, or objects within the new vault system.

The Solutions

Team D3 recommended a cloud-based service solution called Vaultra that is supported and updated by Team D3 under an annual service agreement. All of Lemke Industrial Machine’s business goals and objectives are achieved by the customization of the Vaultra system with Autodesk Vault Pro as its engine.

Azure VPN will allow Lemke Industrial Machine’s Vault users to access the cloud-based Azure-hosted, Autodesk Vault. Lemke Industrial Machine’s remote users will be able to manage all their data inside of the Team D3-hosted Vault in the Azure cloud. Microsoft Azure VPN ensures a secure connection to connect users remotely with an on-premises network. Its mobile authentication ensures that no unauthorized access happens to your profile.

The Autodesk Vault Thin Client grants access to read-only files from the Vault database without consuming a Vault license. These non-licensed users can search, print, and view files and Items from a web browser. Team D3 implemented and configured Autodesk Vault Thin Client for each server. In addition, Team D3 worked with Lemke Industrial Machine’s transition team to configure the restrictions and permissions of the Autodesk Thin Client users.

Foolproof publishing confirms that the right people receive correct design data promptly, thereby eliminating errors and costs associated with manufacturing or ordering outdated engineering drawings. This process supplies a safety net to guarantee successful completion of publishing jobs every time, while also increasing productivity by automating manual and repetitive tasks. By streamlining and making data accessible to all departments, high-quality data is ensured through adherence to the best standards and practices. By implementing this script, Team D3 was able to streamline the communication process and improve the overall user experience by supplying comprehensive and easily accessible information on the generated PDFs during critical transition stages.

The Business outcome

The solution, while addressing many desired features and functions, was streamlined with the creation and implementation of customized scripts that address and automate most all the workflows and routines that are a part of the Autodesk Vault Pro document management system. Lemke Industrial Machine’s top priorities such as Project Lifecycle Management, Engineering Change Orders, Revision Control, Automatic File Numbering system, and User Defined Properties are remedied in the prescribed solution. Because the Autodesk Vault Pro solution is such a robust document management system, many other features can, with time, be added including connectivity to Lemke Industrial Machine’s existing corporate systems such as ERP and MRP.

The Conclusion

With the cloud-based Vaultra service in place, Lemke Industrial Machine is relieved of maintenance and upgrade responsibilities associated with a local server-based Autodesk data management system. By leveraging Vaultra, Lemke Industrial Machine can focus on its core tasks while enjoying the benefits of a secure and efficient cloud-based Vault Server solution.

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