Manufacturers and engineers glean valuable insights through CAD and ERP integration



Germany-based CIDEON is a systems integrator and process consultant with more than 10,000 customers across the mechanical engineering industry. CIDEON advises and supports companies in optimizing their product development processes from conception through engineering to production and service. CIDEON creates integrations between computer-aided design (CAD) and engineering and enterprise resource planning (ERP) software such as SAP.

The Challenge: Disconnections between cost, design, and facility data leave money on the table

CIDEON’s customers could see the lost opportunity caused by a disconnection between their CAD and ERP software. Their design, cost, and facility data were in silos, creating blind spots for decision-makers. Designers had no way to see the immediate impact of their choices on cost or manufacturability while manufacturing teams had little visibility into material selections. Bringing the data together required manual data entry or the uploading and downloading of CSV files—processes that offered little opportunity to gain insights and optimize. CIDEON knew that a simplified connection between Fusion 360 and SAP's ERP systems could improve manufacturing processes, allowing teams to design and order parts that are optimal for both the product and the manufacturing facility. With Autodesk and SAP offering cloud solutions, an answer seemed within reach.  

The APS Solution: Building a connection between CAD and ERP using the Manufacturing Data Model API

CIDEON has built a connection between CAD and ERP using the Manufacturing Data Model API to create a browser-based, two-way integration that pulls data from the cloud. With Fusion 360 components linked to SAP and bills of material (BOM) automatically transferred and updated, manual data entry is reduced. The solution gives CIDEON’s customers live information synced in real-time. Manufacturers can tap into BOM directly from SAP early in the design phase, enabling them to pre-order parts well ahead of manufacturing. Engineers can see cost calculations for each component based on complex factors such as country and customer, VAT, and more. Now they can choose the least expensive, most available parts during the design phase. It’s a system that delivers both the sight lines and the insights manufacturers and engineers need.

Business Outcomes

  • Better collaboration between engineers and manufacturers
  • Better product design and smoother manufacturing processes
  • Products designed and made at lower cost and with fewer supply chain hiccups

“The (Manufacturing Data Model) API provided us with the ability to create an entirely new solution where there was previously a gap. It became a joy to use. We never turned back.” Stefan Schaarschmidt, Product Manager, CIDEON

APIs and Services

Model Derivative API
Model Derivative API
Manufacturing Data Model API
Manufacturing Data Model API

Autodesk Products

Autodesk Fusion

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