In this case study, Michael D'Amico, National Design Manager, Moreton Hire, explains the time savings and benefits gained since they began using Showcase, one of the many tools in Autodesk Factory Design Suite.
Moreton Hire had previously relied upon the 2D tools in AutoCAD and 3D Studio Max. However, each of the company's 14 designers had their own style, and were using different templates internally, making it difficult to collaborate.
Moreton Hire moved to Autodesk Factory Design Suite to take advantage of the additional tools it would provide to the organisation.
The design team soon discovered new ways to collaborate, save time, and improve the quality of their work.
"One of our designers started learning Showcase, and began using it for most of his work," says D'Amico. "After seeing the results, I realised there were definite benefits for the business to use Showcase throughout the design team."
Moreton Hire officially trialled Showcase in Victoria for three months, and then rolled it out to the other states.
"The transition for our team of 14 designers nationwide was a challenge, because no one likes change. But the designers realised that Showcase can do things much quicker, and with better results."
D'Amico challenged each designer nationwide to use Showcase for the rendering of a large internal project. "All of the renders done by the designers were identical. You wouldn't know that 14 different people had rendered them."
"In Showcase, everything is the same. One person can pick up another person's file and use it. There are no templates you have to work with – everything is just there."
"We've been using Showcase now for close to a year in Melbourne, and the rest of the team for two or three months. Once they play around with it a couple times, most of them end up choosing it as their primary design software," says D'Amico.
Efficiency gains from using showcase
The improvements to rendering time and output speed from Showcase are allowing Moreton Hire to be more competitive.
D'Amico explains, "Fly-throughs could previously take up to a weekend to render, and you can't really use your computer at the same time. We did a fly-through animation with Showcase, and render time was ten minutes! We now do two or three times as many renderings in a day than we did previously.
"The quality is better too, and we're able to produce some really nice finishes. With Showcase, you don't need to be as tech-savvy to stay at the forefront of technology in producing quality renderings."
Shorter rendering times also allow Moreton Hire to offer services to clients that were previously time-consuming, such as video animations.
According to D'Amico, "Showcase has pretty much revolutionised how we go about day-to-day work."
Working relationship with a2k technologies
"Our working relationship with A2K Technologies is very positive. Our account manager is very professional and very supportive. He's always in contact, and if we ever need support, it's just a phone call away. Once I even sent him an email on his day off, and he called me straight away."
"If you have a software glitch, you still have the day's quota to get out, so you need to fix the problem as quickly as possible. With A2K, they usually find the solution within 30 minutes of a logged ticket notification, so it's quite a speedy process, and we can rely on that support for business continuity."
Overview of factory design suite
Factory Design Suite's visualisation and analysis tools increase design efficiency and communication of the most efficient manufacturing layouts, through creation of digital factory models. It also uses digital prototyping to evaluate multiple what-if layout scenarios, to determine the best solution before any equipment is installed.
The additional tools within Autodesk's Factory Design Suite, such as Inventor, have allowed Moreton Hire to be more versatile and flexible in the file types they can use.
D'Amico explains, "We worked with a company to draw up furniture, and they only use Inventor. We sent them a catalogue with the dimensions and images of the furniture we needed.
"When we received their models, we were able to open them in Inventor, resave them as AutoCAD blocks, and use them in AutoCAD. Without having Inventor in our Factory Design Suite, we wouldn't have been able to use that supplier.
"Making the transition to Factory Design Suite has been very positive for Moreton Hire."
Michael D'Amico, National Design Manager, Moreton Hire.