One of the things we are most used to doing, is harmonizing, centralizing and updating large amounts of scattered information; often spread throughout a company and found amongst different people and in different documents. At 3D Systems, that’s exactly what we did; providing them with standardized and centralized information.
3D Systems Leuven was formerly known as LayerWise. It is a spin-off of the Catholic University of Leuven, Department of Mechanical Engineering, and nowadays one of the world’s market leaders in 3D Printing of metal components. 3D Systems Leuven is both a technology developer and a technology user.
The state-of-the art printing technology at 3D Systems Leuven allows them to build up material in layers, with a high intensity laser, until they have a solid product. One of the great assets of their technology, is that it enables the designers to manufacture very complex geometries which could not be produced by relying on traditional techniques. These characteristics make them a strong innovation partner for clients in the industrial, medical and aerospace sector.
3D Systems Leuven is currently an enterprise belonging to the 3D Systems group, headquartered in South Carolina, USA, and is also a world leader in 3D printing technology.
Challenges: up-to-date, accessible and complete documentation
Due to the growing success of their 3D printing technology, manufacturing facilities in France and Switzerland have recently started to play an ever more important role in the production of the printing machines. This contributed strongly to the need for clear, accessible, yet extensive documentation for the manufacturers.
There was a need to harmonize and centralize the information, and to check if it was still up-to-date.
In addition, there was a large amount of written information, created throughout the years by different people with different roles and saved in different places. Sometimes, different documents even discussed the same subjects but contained slightly different instructions. The information was of very good quality. However, there was a need to harmonize and centralize it, and to check if it was still up-to-date with the latest developments.
This is where Flow came into the picture.
Solution: collaboration in the workplace
We studied all of the relevant documents and incorporated the information spread across those documents into coherent texts. Furthermore, we gathered oral information given by engineers, quality controllers and assemblers.
We also witnessed assemblies, finetuning and quality controls and noted down best practices, together with safety procedures. In addition, we took hundreds of photos and made illustrations to incorporate in the documentation.
Eventually, we delivered several hundred pages of documentation with easy to read, standardized and centralized information.