Improved stability, more power and better functionality

– The system we had was unstable, it crashed too much and had many limitations in the modeling functionality, says Jon André Teigen. He is Manufacturing and Maintenance Director at Stokke.

More than forty years after the launch of the Tripp Trapp chair Stokke continues their philosophy of relying on a core concept – designing products that are in the child’s best interest. Stokke has become a big enterprise with around 1.4 billion NOK in sales, they sell products to more than 70 countries and is a premium brand, thanks to good design that Stokke has always relied on. Design is not just about bright minds, it is as much about good and stable CAD and document management systems.

Experienced problems
Stokke has outsourced all its production abroad. Sales, customer service and local marketing is being pursued in the various markets. Other activities that are managed from Norway are marketing and product development which are performed from offices both in Ålesund and in Oslo. Stokke has one department handling design and innovation and another that works on maintenance, further development and modifications of existing products. Both design processes and maintenance work place great demands on good IT systems. The programs they relied on in the past crashed on a regular basis during the change of geometrical components and they also experienced slow performance, especially when they worked with complex models and large assemblies.

– The system simply worked too hard and did not communicate particularly well with other systems. The old system we had was a mid-range system. It was a little easier, a little simpler, a little less expensive and had fewer features. It also had limitations in functionality and stability, thus we wanted a system that could handle complex tasks in both component generation and assemblies in a better way, adds Teigen. He states that they selected NX™/Teamcenter from Digitread as their new software.

Greater efficiency
Digitread started installation and training on NX™ just before Easter 2016 and after a very short period of use employees in Stokke discovered that there were major benefits to be gained by switching to the new system:

  • One of our employees said she was working on a product which took her an hour and twenty minutes to load in the old program, but with NX™ took only two minutes. Others can tell of similar episodes during a project where they spent somewhere between 100 and 150 hours fixing things that crashed, or overcoming shortcomings in the old program, Teigen continues.
  • Therefore, it was important for us to switch to something that works better so that we can spend our time on designing new products and working on enhancements to existing products, rather than wasting time fixing things that do not work which cause annoyance and spending a lot of time solving computer problems.

Great expectations
– It is not that long since we installed the program and received training, so it is too early to evaluate, but we have employees who have worked with NX™ before and they have had good experiences. We expect that we will have a system that gives us more stability and better efficiency. Previously, we had to export PDF drawings to the old document management system, now the original files will be located there as Teamcenter and NX™ are fully integrated with each other. This will also be a real asset, Teigen explains.

Quality and safety
Stokke has 10 users on the CAD system NX™ and 40 users on the Teamcenter document handling system. They have started using NX™, and now Digitread is making special modifications in line with Stokke’s requirements. The schedule dictates that the work on this, plus integration to the ERP system will be completed by the beginning of June. Then, they will start to migrate the old product documentation on each product to Teamcenter. In this way, the overall documentation can be integrated with NX™, and then Stokke can use NX™/Teamcenter solution fully at its optimum.

– Our motto is: “In the best interest of the child!” It obligates us to be particularly concerned about the quality and safety of the products we supply. Having good systems for design and product development, while ensuring that we have proper documentation for our products, is an important part of being a premium brand in the global market, hence this investment was very important for us, Teigen asserts.

PUBLISHED: May 13th 2016