Warren McCray, Technical Solutions Consultant, MFG
A dashboard is a tool that provides a visual representation of key performance indicators (KPIs) and other metrics. The information can be in the form of graphs, charts, or maps and with the option for users to further drill down the data.
In today's business world, dashboards are everywhere. They can be displayed in a variety of ways. You may have seen them proudly displayed in a public area so the staff, as well as prospective clients, can see the production ratings, safety stats, and a variety of delivery percentages. They are used to communicate information and some dashboards are updated daily, or twice a day. As productivity increases or decreases in today's modern manufacturing facilities, these dashboards are digital and will create competition between teams and provide the team's performance level for all to see. They also provide management a means to see the state of the company daily.
No team wants to be the lowest performer, so this creates more incentive to produce, improve quality, deliver on time, and avoid safety incidents. Employees and clients stop by and look at their department production levels and see if their rates are falling behind. If so, they can motivate their teams and get their performance back up to the maximum output.
This also helps when trying to impress prospective clients. They can see how proficient your company is, and how reliable your deliveries are. It can help remove the fears typically experienced when looking for a quality supplier or partner. This is one reason why ISO certified companies are so popular. They took the time to document their process, instill discipline to follow those processes, and when they need improvement, their processes are updated. Metrics are maintained and performance levels are monitored daily. Dashboards typically provide a fast and easy way to communicate this information.
Dashboards created on the 3DEXPERIENCE platform have taken dashboards to a whole new level. Displaying metrics and analytics is still possible, but the 3DEXPERIENCE platform allows for much more than metrics and stats. The 3DEXPERIENCE platform dashboards bring data to life by connecting people to not only view but share and collaborate with one another on one platform.
Gone are the days of using disjointed software solutions that do not work seamlessly together. When you create your very own dashboard you can build it to your liking. The freedom to create a dashboard that is customized for your department empowers leaders to take advantage of technology, be more efficient and help free them from their silos. Marketing Professionals, Production Managers, Accountants, Engineers, Designers, and Shipping personnel can all create their own custom dashboards that meet their unique requirements. They can even access 3D Viewers and review amazing designs, mark them up and collaborate with their internal and external stakeholders around the world, this can all be done from any device, from anywhere, and at any time.
During this blog, I will show you how to easily create a dashboard, and customize it for your department, or your personal use. You can share your dashboard with others, or just use it as your main source to access everything you need, all on one platform. You can access as much, or as little information as needed to help you be more productive and help keep your teams moving forward with ever-expanding new technologies. Just like the apps on your cell phone, dashboards provide you easy access to more information than we have ever had before, with faster and more impressive results.
Lets' get started.
First, you must have access to a web browser. Many of them work well, I am partial to Google Chrome, but Firefox or other web browsers should work fine.
The next step is to log into the 3DEXPERIENCE platform. To gain access to the platform you must be invited by someone who already has access, or your company must purchase space on the 3DEXPERIENCE platform. Your company administrator will invite you to their Dashboard, assign you the roles that are applicable to you and your department. If you have not been invited and you would like to gain access to the 3DEXPERIENCE platform visit our website or contact your local SOLIDWORKS value-added reseller.
Once you have an account just log in. You will be greeted by a welcome message.
There is an assortment of icons available at the top right of the welcome page. The Plus sign will provide a drop-down menu that will allow you to add a Tab at the top of this page or add a Dashboard, or a Story.
Click on the Dashboard option and the Create Dashboard window will appear. You have the option to create an empty dashboard or Create a dashboard from a pre-formatted template. Both options work well, and both can be customized. For this example, I will select Create Empty Dashboard and hit the blue Create button at the bottom of the window.
The left Pane window will open and reflect the New Dashboard as well as any other dashboards you may have access to. You have the option to relocate dashboards from the My Dashboards section into the Favorites Dashboards area for easy access. To do this just drag and drop the dashboard into the favorites area.
You are now in your new Dashboard!
A New Tab is automatically created. You can rename it by clicking on the New Tab text.
The Dashboard can also be renamed. To rename the Dashboard, select the down arrow just to the right of the name and select Edit. I will name this dashboard Design and SWYM with TPM. You have the option to enter a description as well. Hit OK to confirm the changes.
From here the rest is easy!
Now, all I need to do is see what Roles and Apps are available to me. To do this, I must click on the 3DEXPERIENCE Logo. It is the round blue icon in the top left corner.
Click on the 3DEXPERIENCE Logo. The Logo will remain highlighted and display My Roles, My Favorite Apps, and all my Apps.
The roles that have been purchased and granted to you will be shown on the left side of your screen. To see what apps are available under each role just click on the role and the apps provided under that role will be displayed.
For Example, if I click on 3D Creator this is what is available for this role:
There are many roles available on this Dashboard. I will start with the Collaborative Business Innovator Role. Wow! Look at all the Apps that are provided. The first one I would like to add to my dashboard is the Web Page Reader. I will drag and drop it onto my dashboard on the right. Other favorites are 3DSWYM and 3DPlay. 3DPlay will allow me to view, edit and mark up files. A dashed outline appears as I drag the App to the right, I will drag and drop the Web Page Reader App into the dashed box. I can relocate it at any time.
Here I will enter my most frequently used websites for quick and easy access. I will copy and paste the URL https://www.solidworks.com/ into the website field and hit the add button.
The web page is displayed and I can resize it by dragging the corner as desired.
I will drag another Web Page Reader onto my dashboard and place the URL Link into it and hit the add button and then close the Roles and Apps window by hitting the X on the top right of the left windowpane. I will hit Ctrl + Shift +B to hide my bookmarks. From here I can access these sites, log in and work on each of them as I see fit. You can choose any site you desire for quick and easy access.
We can create as many tabs as we like and add as many apps as we desire. Repeat this process and customize each tab as you see fit. When complete, you can invite others to share your Dashboard. Below are examples of additional tabs that can be created with different apps.
This is a tab where I added Quick Links App on the left and the Project Planning App on the right. Here I can assign Tasks and monitor their progress.
Here I added a tab with the xDesign App on the left and the 3DSpace App on the right. The 3DSpace app allows easy access to my files. I can maximize the xDesign window at any time and work on my project.
Below I added an App called 3DSWYM. This App allows me to collaborate with others and get access to a variety of communities. I have a variety of additional apps I can choose from to build my dashboard to my liking.
Lastly, I added an App called 3DSWYM. This App allows me to collaborate with others and get access to a variety of communities. I have a variety of additional apps I can choose from to build my dashboard to my liking.
I can even add a tab to capture analytics and post live data and graphs, from a variety of sources with the NETVIBES App.
You can share it with your team members or other stakeholders within your organization. Just go to the drop-down arrow and select share. Follow the prompts and you are done.
Let us recap:
We obtained access to the 3DEXPERIENCE platform, determined what roles and apps I had at my disposal, and created a new Dashboard.
If you would like to create your own custom dashboard, reach out to us and we can help you connect your team members to the 3DEXPERIENCE platform!