Automate Issue Tracking the Right Way
Design and manufacturing projects are often complex and involve distributed stakeholders all around the world. Teams that use email, spreadsheets and paper to keep track of projects, reviews, and files waste valuable time simply searching for the information they need. The implications of this disconnected process are massive, including compromised quality, files not released on time, old versions reaching the shop floor, and mistakes caught too late.
Does your design process look like this?
To keep everyone on the same page, many teams turn to cloud-based task tracking tools like Jira and Asana. For mechanical design teams, CoLab offers full CAD-viewing support, workflows built for design and manufacturing, and integrations directly with engineering tools, including CAD and PDM.
Whichever tool you choose, ensure your issue tracking solution offers the key solutions below:
Key Requirements of an Issue Tracking Solution:
- One shared central location: all your CAD files, bills of materials, and supporting information is in one place, so you no longer have to search through repositories to find the information you need.
- Accessibility: a simple, intuitive interface where an entire project team and external collaborators can discuss issues, makes it easy to know where issues stand, if you’re on track, and how to resolve issues efficiently.
- Prioritization: with a long list of open issues, it can be challenging to understand where to begin. By leveraging an issue tracking software, each open issue gets assigned a priority and due date, so you can easily filter by importance and urgency.
- Accountability: Every issue has an owner, and a due date, so issues get done by the right person, when you need them.
- Workflow and Notifications: Clear, configurable workflows mean clear oversight of progress. Need someone to jump in on a review? Full notification systems let users know when they need to get involved.
- Records: Create histories automatically as you work, not after the fact. By implementing an issue tracking tool with comprehensive histories, all comments, revisions, issue histories, and more are tracked throughout the life of the project, so compliance is easy, and it's simple to understand when and why decisions were made.
- Reports: Spend time working on the issue rather than writing about it - look for a solution with reporting capabilities that meet your needs.
Issue-tracking software is an effective way to streamline issue management on design and manufacturing projects. If you find you're spending too much time managing the work rather than working, automating your progress monitoring and issue tracking processes may be a good idea.
What kind of systems or software applications do you use to track your issues? Do you find it effective, and if not, why? We'd love to know.