Bring your manufacturing partners into design

Right now, engineers throw their design over the stage gate wall, and find out too late that a part isn’t toolable or a component can’t be machined. With CoLab, companies bring that risk forward by giving manufacturers access to 3D models earlier.

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How it works

Collect DFM feedback from your suppliers before production

Gathering DFM feedback from suppliers today looks something like a last minute RFQ, emailing drawings back and forth or coordinating multiple schedules to set a meeting in 3-6 weeks.

Needless to say, the process often leads to late stage design changes and product launch delays.

Instead, companies who use CoLab, invite suppliers into a secure, online portal where they can participate in design conversations well ahead of prototyping.

This process is as simple as:

  • Create a package of 2D and 3D files for your supplier to review
  • Invite them to give feedback via a secure link
  • Exchange feedback in real time, with comments pinned directly to drawings and 3D models

As a result, engineering teams react to critical product feedback well ahead of a design freeze and realize cost efficiencies sooner.

Leverage internal manufacturing knowledge

As company leadership pushes engineering teams to do more with less and launch higher quality products faster, engineers must leverage internal manufacturing knowledge to reach these goals.

But, this is easier said than done. Typically, engineering teams don’t bring manufacturing into design conversations because it’s too difficult. Complicated software licensing fees and rigid workflows make this task seem impossible.

Companies who use CoLab, however, bring their manufacturing partners into design conversations by giving them access to 3D models, 2D drawings and other essential PMI in a single platform. Here, manufacturing can pin DFM feedback directly on the model. This feedback is then tagged and catalogued so engineering teams not only gather DFM feedback, but action it in a systemized way.

Consolidate your DFM workflow

DFM is still done by sending 200-slide PowerPoint decks back-and-forth over email. Why? Because “it’s the way we’ve always done it.” And engineering teams are fed up. 

When DFM could take anywhere from 2 weeks or 2 months, it’s time to revamp “the way we’ve always done it.”

With CoLab, teams turn disjointed workflows between PowerPoints, markup tools, email threads and spreadsheets into a single workflow inside a single platform. Pulling files directly from PLM into CoLab, engineering teams can start DFM projects faster, create engaging feedback loops and prioritize DFM ideas. 

So DFM is done in a span of weeks – not months.


You don’t need yet another disconnected software solution. That's why CoLab does two things: 

  • integrates with your CAD and PLM software to create a connected tech ecosystem.
  • it replaces the 5-10 apps you use to complete a single process workflow with 1-2 apps (CoLab + PLM, for example)

Case Studies

cost reduction
Product Redesigns

“When we released all the manufacturing prints, it was about 300 individual PDF documents and we reviewed them all in CoLab. It's safe to say that it was the cleanest design release that we've done. We didn't have any mistakes that made it out to the supplier.”

Kevin walters
Kevin Walters
Senior Director of Hardware Engineering
Read the Story
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FAQs about using CoLab for DFM

So is CoLab a DFM analysis tool?

Will CoLab help us catch cost reduction DFM opportunities?

My engineering team is in the United States but our manufacturing plants are worldwide, so we struggle to do DFM ahead of production. Can CoLab help with this?

We don’t do DFM today, can CoLab help us start and iterate on this process?

Does CoLab have any tools to assess the monetary value of a DFM analysis?

What’s next?

If you’re ready to see how a DES can transform the way your engineering team works, here’s how the process works with CoLab.

  • Every conversation starts with a discovery call. During this call, a technical expert will understand your team’s challenges with design review today
  • Then, we’ll tailor a demo to address those challenges. This demo includes you, of course, but also some key members from your team who can speak to your challenges in greater detail and vet CoLab as the solution.
  • Finally, we do a workshop with more members of your team. This is the fun part! During this workshop, your team will each have temporary CoLab licenses and participate in a sample design review. You and your team will be guided through key features and use cases right inside the CoLab platform.
Schedule a talk with a CoLab product expert.