We introduced new list pricing for several of our products recently, including Kubotek Validation Tool. That in and of itself isn't really blog-worthy. However, the reasons behind why we did so might be. Read on...
Superior technology shouldn't have to cost you more.
Many of our Kubotek Validation Tool customers come to us because they need to meet the Boeing D6-51991 Quality Assurance Standard for Digital Product Definition (DPD).
As part of this quality specification, Boeing suppliers need software to validate their CAD data against the OEM issued master file. A validation report is processed to assure that no changes have been introduced to a file at any point during the manufacturing process. The biggest fear is that a random, unintentional change could negatively affect product quality. The validation report provides traceability.
There are two technology types available that can do this validation. One is a points-based system, wherein random points are placed throughout a CAD model. The same point pattern is applied to the master file. If any of the points don't match, it's flagged as a difference. That works if the points are placed in the correct location. There is, however, still a risk that a point will not be located on a section of geometry that is, in fact, different.
The other type of validation software, Kubotek Validation Tool, uses geometric pattern recognition technology that mathematically compares two CAD models, regardless of file type. This sort of comparison ensures that two models are geometrically identical and is far more accurate due to the mathematical calculations that run the software. You can't cheat the math.
Most people would assume a more accurate software should be more expensive, that if you want the better product, you have to pay more. But that logic doesn't sit well with us. Why should manufacturers have to choose between quality and price? That's one reason we lowered the price of Kubotek Validation Tool - so manufacturers could get the better product at a better price.
Superior technology and a lower price also satisfies finicky purchasing agents
Providing justification to your purchasing agent is easier when the better product is competitively priced. By lowering the list price of Kubotek Validation Tool, we are making the RFP process less painful.
A lower price makes it less cost prohibitive to be in compliance.
Even though CAD Validation software is just one check-box that needs to be checked in order to pass the Boeing D6 audit, it's a requirement that must be in place to pass the audit and achieve OEM approval.
In essence, that kind of creates a cornered market. Customers have little choice but to buy a software tool and avoid an audit failure if they want to be a Boeing supplier.
Sure, we could have jacked up the price, but that would be wrong and not at all the way Kubotek works. I refer back to my point above. By lowering the prices on our end, we want to make it easier for suppliers to meet their compliance requirements.
Lowering the cost of one of the audit elements may make it more affordable for a smaller organization to compete.
We know that companies come in all shapes and sizes. We work with many smaller businesses on a daily basis. Their size is by no means indicative of their know-how and ability to deliver quality products.
Meeting quality requirements for a D6 audit already requires a number of elements. And yes, we know validation software is only a small part of that. But we don't think it's fair that many smaller companies choose not to compete for contracts simply because they can't afford a pivotal piece of the puzzle that would allow them to play in the Boeing arena.
Reducing the cost of one of the audit elements may make it more affordable for a smaller organization to compete and win business.
Lower costs mean better quality for everyone.
With all the talk about Boeing D6 standards (and other aerospace OEM's that are beginning to adopt this type of quality requirement), we tend to lose sight of the real value of CAD validation.
CAD validation software can certainly be used by organizations for internal audit purposes. Organizations that need to be 100% confident in their design elements, for both their internal and external customers, will find that a product like Kubotek Validation Tool in their design check process will ensure the highest level of product quality.
When it needs to be perfect, it needs to be validated. And when it needs to be validated, why not make it affordable. In the end, better quality products shouldn't have to mean inflated prices. Prices that I would assume would be raised to cover the cost of assuring that quality.
I seem to have brought my thoughts around full circle, haven't I?
Now it's your turn. Do you have any thoughts or knowledge you care to share? Post them in the comments section!