SOLIDWORKS and PLM: No Fear Required

By Matthew


Thinking about using SOLIDWORKS in a PLM environment? As FDR once said “We have nothing to fear, but fear itself’. The biggest fear is that your designers will revolt in the face of having to work inside a complex management environment that will force them to change the way they work.

We get this. PLM systems are typically complex and require your users to spend an inordinate amount of time on non-value added activities, such as ‘check-in’ and ‘check-out’. And why should a designer change the way they work? They have already established practices and methods that have helped them to be innovative and productive. I would not want to be the IT person telling them that they now have extra work to do!

At Dassault Systèmes, our 3DEXPERIENCE platform offers a fresh approach to this problem. Recognizing that our existing Enterprise PDM solution has been greatly accepted by the design community, the same R&D group has designed a new product that offers the usability of EPDM but actually stores the data in a broader and more capable PLM solution. The result is the SOLIDWORKS Collaborative Innovation Connector, a product that works and acts much like a workgroup solution would but gives the designer just enough access to the PLM functionality to innovate their processes beyond what they can do today in a PDM environment.

If you’ve can give us 6 minutes, we’d love to show you how SOLIDWORKS connected to the 3DEXPERIENCE platform can help increase productivity and design collaboration within design and across the enterprise. Join us for a webinar on this solution at:

YouTube Preview Image

Also, please register for SOLIDWORKS World 2015 that will be held in Phoenix, Arizona: Feb 8-11.  The registration page for that event is still open and as a registered attendee, you are eligible to join the ENOVIA Collaborative Design with SOLIDWORKS User Group Meeting that will be held on Feb 9, 12pm – 1:30pm.  Register for that event at this link.

At this ENOVIA/SOLIDWORKS user group meeting, you can meet ENOVIA experts from Dassault Systèmes, other experts from around the world and share your thoughts, experiences and get questions answered from the assembled experts!

SW World 2015

Hope to see you in Phoenix!  :D

Matthew J. Hall

Matthew J. Hall

Matthew Hall is the ENOVIA User Advocacy & Social EXPERIENCE Specialist.  You can find him on Twitter at @mjhall. Connect with ENOVIA at @3DSENOVIA

Top Three Considerations for Planning Your Move to the 3DEXPERIENCE Platform

By Matthew

Over the past year there has been a lot of communication around the new 3DEXPERIENCE platform made available in the R2014x release. Some ENOVIA customers may wonder how this impacts their past investments with Dassault Systèmes. While the R2014x release offers many new benefits to Dassault Systèmes’ customers and upgrading is very similar to past ENOVIA V6 upgrades. The reasons are:

  1. The 3DEXPERIENCE platform is an extension to the ENOVIA platform used in previous releases – in other words, both have the same technology foundation.
  2. All V6 commercial licenses from past releases are migrated to R2014x at no charge and in many cases the new licenses have expanded functionality.
  3. As with past releases, a customer can upgrade with the same functional scope or choose to expand their implementation’s scope with new processes for new user roles.

1. 3DEXPERIENCE Platform Technology

The same data model and business process rules that power the 3DEXPERIENCE platform also powered the ENOVIA platform. In fact, the same basic approach also powered the MatrixOne platform. This is why so many of ENOVIA’s current customers have been able to successfully upgrade since their first implementation in the mid to late 1990’s. This evolution of platform technology is best conveyed in the following figure:

The evolution of platform technology by Dassault Systèmes

The evolution of platform technology

While the “engine” of all 3 evolutions of the platform is very similar, the 3DEXPERIENCE platform’s spans a much broader scope of functionality. In addition to the formal control of product development processes, the 3DEXPERIENCE platform also provides social collaboration and data federation capabilities to either enterprise or public data sources. The 3DEXPERIENCE platform also delivers the latest IT technologies including cloud support and a modern user experience for desktop and mobile devices.

2. License Upgrades

All licenses from past V6 releases are upgraded to R2014x at zero charge as part of the standard V6 maintenance policy. In many cases these upgrades will provide more standard capabilities than customers previously received. For example, the license for Engineering Bill-of-Material Management now includes standard capabilities for managing an approved vendor list, which was previously licensed separately. Another example of the added standard value provided with R2014x is all licenses for managing CAD data now include standard library classification and reuse capabilities. Of course, the best way to learn of the added value of R2014s is to contact a 3DS Sales Executive to arrange a presentation of all the standard benefits in R2014x.

3. Expand and Transform an ENOVIA Implementation w/ R2014x

A customer may choose to upgrade to R2014x just to get the new functionality described in the previous sections. However, over the past few years, ENOVIA has added business processes for many roles beyond PLM’s traditional roots in Engineering and Design departments. Additionally, many of these roles and processes are now uniquely tailored to specific industry needs as delivered in the 3DS Industry Solution Experiences.   The R2014x upgrade is an excellent opportunity to also assess your company’s business goals and determine if there are new processes and user roles that need to be included in the ENOVIA implementation.


Hopefully, this quick introduction to upgrading to the 3DEXPERIENCE platform has answered many questions, and provides assurance that this upgrade will be similar to all past V6 upgrades. Remember:

  1. The 3DEXPERIENCE represents an evolution of the technology rooted in ENOVIA V6 and the Matrix One platform
  2. Your licenses will migrate to the 3DEXPERIENCE platform – often with additional functionality.
  3. Take advantage of the new technology available in the 3DEXPERIENCE platform to solve new business challenges.

We look forward to working with you to help you get the most out of the 3DEXPERIENCE platform. Be sure to contact one of our solutions experts at for more information.  Additionally, please feel free to comment or ask you questions in the comment section below.

Matthew J. Hall Matthew Hall is the ENOVIA User Advocacy & Social EXPERIENCE Specialist.You can find him on Twitter at @mjhall. Connect with ENOVIA at @3DSENOVIA

Design Review in a Multi-CAD Data Management Environment

By Ron

ConversationDesign Review in a Multi-CAD Data Management Environment, a conversation with:

  • David Segal: ENOVIA User Experience Director
  • Ron Close: ENOVIA Marketing Director




Ron Close, Dassault Systèmes’ ENOVIA Marketing Director

Ron Close, Dassault Systèmes’ ENOVIA Marketing Director

Ron: David, thanks for joining us for this conversation. We’ve been talking a lot recently about the ENOVIA Multi-CAD Data Management Experience and it’s great to have the subject matter expert with us. For this conversation, we’d like to talk about how companies can optimize their Design Review processes in a Multi-CAD environment. Could I first ask you to describe the basics of how ENOVIA tackles this problem?

David: Thanks Ron. This is indeed a very important topic for our customers. As you know, many customers work in a mixed CAD environment but still need to bring the data together for intra-departmental reviews as well as reviews with constituents outside of the company, such as suppliers and OEM clients.   Managing digital mock-up (DMU) in Multi-CAD environments has been always an important process to improve design quality and efficiency. ENOVIA is able to bring Multi-CAD designs together by automatically generating lightweight versions of the CAD files and assembling them in what we call a ‘3D hybrid digital mock-up’. Once the visualization data is created, ENOVIA users can enjoy the benefits of the 3DEXPERIENCE Data Driven Architecture which delivers critical functionality to perform instant design reviews, resolve interferences and clashes.

Ron: I understand that is how we bring the data together. Do we have to manually regenerate the visualization data each time the CAD data is updated?

David Segal, ENOVIA User Experience Director

David Segal, ENOVIA User Experience Director

David: No, with the immersive data management provided by ENOVIA, the changes made in the native CAD system are automatically propagated not only to the visualization data, but for the Bill of Materials and other meta-data elements as well. In fact, designers or a group of designers, could set up rules for automatic generation and updates of lightweight designs and be in constant control of when, how and what data will be generated.

Ron: Besides the visualization data, can you shed some light on other data elements that are managed in this environment?

David: Information about material, tolerances and annotations, product and manufacturing information can be captured for further digital mock-up analysis. In addition, information such as version, owner and data last changed are always accessible from ENOVIA. This makes it easier than ever to maximize the value of your IP – even when it comes from different CAD authoring systems.

Ron: Very cool. You mentioned that when the CAD data is modified, the changes propagate ‘automatically’. How is that accomplished? Surely the designer must interact with ENOVIA to communicate his changes?

David: I’m glad you asked. Actually, the immersive environment from Dassault Systemes places ENOVIA functionality within the CAD authoring application’s user interface. The designer doesn’t need to leave his work environment and switch to another window – all design data management functions are available from within the CAD user interface. So the simple act of saving a part through this interface enables the changes to propagate automatically. Moreover, ENOVIA ensures your data integrity and prevents any chance for design inconsistency through this automatic propagation. This is especially important for concurrent design with multiple players.   I just happened to have a screen shot with me to illustrate this point:

CAD Authoring Application Interface

CAD Authoring Application Interface

 Ron: Thanks David, that’s very clear now. As a final question, can you summarize the value of having this 3D hybrid design review available for Multi-CAD clients?

David: In short, this is all about improving design quality, efficiency and development cycle through truly innovative process of a design’s precise visual convergence. This is what makes it a Multi-CAD Data Management Experience.

There are three key values that I would like to leave you with regarding this innovative process:

  1. Efficiency: Extend the value of intellectual property: Leverage existing design data for full blown mock-ups for review and analysis.
  2. Quality: Reduce the occurrence of duplicate designs across multiple CAD systems: Ttoo often, companies spend time designing parts which may already exist somewhere else. Having all of the Multi-CAD data at your fingertips minimizes this risk.
  3. Optimize access to intellectual property: Managing all of your Multi-CAD design data in one environment minimizes the risk of unauthorized access and maximizes design integrity. Keeping your IP safe, secure, accessible and valid for current use is one of the fundamental values of deploying the ENOVIA solution.

Ron: David, thank you very much for your time.

View our webinar for more information on how Dassault Systèmes can help you with your Multi-CAD Data Management challenge.


Related Posts: “Stop Using Digital Duct Tape for Multi-CAD Data Management” and “Three Common Myths of Multi-CAD Data Management

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