How to choose the right electrical design software package

By Tim Pulaski on

Electrical schematic design tools fill a vital niche in the engineering environment. Falling somewhere between pure electrical and mechanical design, they allow engineers to communicate crucial system-level wiring specifications to technicians, vendors and other downstream project stakeholders. Recognizing the importance of this facet of production, SOLIDWORKS provides several solutions to allow multidisciplinary teams to work together to achieve their design goals and milestones efficiently. Choosing the right tool for your business comes down to a few specific factors we’ll explore in this blog.

Engineering Team Composition

When honing in on the right solution, a major consideration is identifying how many players will participate in a project. For example, are there multiple electrical designers working together on the same system, or does everyone stay in their own lane? Furthermore, are there common elements from one project that may benefit the next, and would it help designers if they had access to the same library of parts, symbols, and templates? A standout difference between SOLIDWORKS Electrical Schematic Standard and Professional is the ability to share library and project data. This functionality is only available in Professional, so if you have a team of designers that pulls from the same datasets frequently, this package level would be the place to start.engineering team composition

Mechanical Involvement

Another thing to consider is whether mechanical integration will play a significant role in your electromechanical design workflow. Would it be ideal if the mechanical team were involved earlier in planning out electrical pathing through the CAD assemblies? SOLIDWORKS provides industry-leading communication between electrical and mechanical design teams through the medium of a shared project database. However, this level of collaboration is only available in the SOLIDWORKS Electrical 3D package. This bolt-on for SOLIDWORKS allows mechanical designers to pull electrical component and connection definitions directly from the schematics, eliminating wasteful and error-prone manual entry.mechanical involvement

Multi-User Collaboration

Suppose you plan to tap into the collaborative capabilities that SOLIDWORKS Electrical Schematic Professional provides. In that case, you should take a moment to consider your company’s network infrastructure and from where your engineers are most likely to work. For example, are users in the same office most of the time, or are they frequently working remotely from home or another office location? If it’s the latter, we’d recommend that a cloud-hosted client/server solution be considered to improve the quality of the users’ connection to the shared database. Alternatively, suppose you want to avoid server costs, and only schematic design elements are required. In that case, the Dassault 3DExperience platform provides a similar experience to SOLIDWORKS Electrical Schematic through the 3DX Electrical Schematic Designer role. Project and library elements are automatically saved to a shared collaborative space in the cloud, providing widespread teams the ability to work together efficiently.multi-user collaboration

Support and Services

Whatever solutions you decide to go with, at the end of the day, Trimech has your back. With comprehensive training programs, implementation, data migration and consulting services, we bring years of experience to the table to ensure your unique engineering challenges can be overcome. Check out our Electrical Services or reach out to your local Trimech representative for more information.Support and service

Have questions about SOLIDWORKS Electrical? Contact us to speak to an expert.