A small design team may consist of 2-4 electrical and mechanical engineers working towards the completion of a project. While some people prefer working with small teams due to the ease of management, this situation also presents its share of challenges. For instance, a 4-member team would require twice the amount of time awarded to an 8-member team in order to complete a client’s project.
In simple terms, data management refers to the policies and practices involved in the acquisition, processing, and, storage of information. Small design teams are synonymous with startups that probably have to rely on limited resources in order to get the job done.
Here are 5 ingenious data management tips to help your small design team protect valuable data.
Create a data lifecycle system
A product’s lifecycle refers to the various stages that occur from product launch to its withdrawal from the market. Just like the product lifecycle, data lifecycle helps small design teams to track information. A data lifecycle management system will enable you to edit information as soon as the need arises. Electrical and mechanical engineers who use effective data lifecycle systems benefit from having unlimited access to highly accurate information.
A data lifecycle system enables you to automate data-entry related tasks. This makes it easier to group similar parts into tiers. It also makes it easy to import data from Microsoft Excel spreadsheets to your BOM software.
Write down data management policies
Perhaps one of the common reasons why engineers end up with incorrect part numbers in their BOMs is having unclear policies on data management. This confusion can lead to double entries of the same item and deletion of data without any explanations. Inadequate information makes it hard to do project estimates.
It’s advisable to delegate a data manager whose role will be to update, edit, backup, and, delete all information related to your project.
Only use compatible data formats
The main disadvantage of importing Microsoft Excel BOMs to BOM software is the risk of data mix-up. Due to the difference in file formats, the BOM software may fail to distinguish spaces between tables appearing in the same MS Excel spreadsheet. Information gets mixed up and it takes a lot of time and effort to make corrections.
You can avoid this situation by creating your list of materials on BOM software that’s compatible with your intended manufacturer.
Protect your data
BOM software allows electrical and mechanical designers to save project data on online storage platforms such as Dropbox and Google Cloud Storage. By frequently backing up your data, you’ll have less to worry about in the unfortunate event of a computer virus attack. Securing your data prevents malicious employees from leaking confidential documents to business rivals.
Consult with seasoned electrical and mechanical engineers
It may be challenging at first to come up with an effective data lifecycle management system. Before you purchase any data management system, get in touch with an experienced engineer to guide you on the do’s and don’ts.
Following the five tips explained above will help you to avoid data loss. Your team will also enjoy the convenience of locating data using an effective system.