mbd-ready

MBD Initiatives: Are They Ready for the Mainstream?

Companies can get a lot of value from MBD initiatives. But is it really ready for mainstream adoption? Here's our take on that answer.

Model-based definitions. Is that type of initiative really ready for mainstream adoption?

This is a really interesting question. I remember conducting research back in 2013, and we asked a lot of questions around what the biggest challenges with model-based definitions were at the time. There were definitely some technology holes there. Some of the tools really needed to be enhanced so that this type of initiative could work. I remember conducting the same type of research in 2017, and those technology challenges that we had referenced in 2013 were now the two lowest concerns overall.

The biggest challenges today have a lot more to do with culture change and getting executives on board. Is MBD ready? I think the technology’s pretty mature in terms of creating the MBD and in consuming the MBD downstream. From a human consumption perspective, and from a machine or software consumption perspective, there is definitely some progress to be made there. But progress is being made.

Although the technology is pretty mature, the outstanding issue is with culture and process and making a change. There’s often a lot of resistance there. I think many companies can reap benefits, but the key is figuring out how to deploy it. Obviously engineers will be involved, but what about procurement, machining, tool design, inspection, and instructions? Where do you go next? Where do you get the most value and who’s going to be ready first? How do you change your process?

Those are the remaining questions. The technology’s pretty mature, so the answer is mixed.

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