Motivo's Agile Transition from GrabCAD to Bild: Enhancing Efficiency with a Powerful PDM System

Case Study
September 25, 2023

About Motivo

In the landscape of innovation, Motivo has consistently stood as a beacon of progress, shaping the future of mobility, energy, agriculture, and aerospace industries. Their diverse portfolio spans across projects such as flying cars, autonomous vehicles, electric boats, 3D-printed supercars, and lithium-powered leaning trikes, all of which aim to revolutionize the way people, goods, and spaces are interconnected. As an organization committed to pushing boundaries and driving transformative change, Motivo had to find an alternative solution to GrabCAD that would enable them to move quickly and efficiently. With Bild, Motivo has been able to streamline its operations while also maintaining agility and efficiency in the pursuit of their groundbreaking projects.

The Challenges

Prior to implementing Bild, Motivo had been using GrabCAD as their file management system. While talking to Motivo’s team, they recalled that although GrabCAD's free nature made it a convenient solution - it lacked critical functionalities essential for a larger engineering organization.

Check-in/check-out process: Lacking a robust check-in/check-out made it difficult for engineers to collaboratively work on files without overriding each other’s changes

Central source of truth: Lacking a singular source of truth caused frequent file mix-ups. Julius, the Mechanical Engineering Manager, mentioned that these mix-ups happened “on a weekly basis for sure, and usually when a big milestone is right around the corner and the team is putting in extra time and the stress is a little higher than usual which feeds into the stress and makes you waste valuable time. It usually happens when you least need it to happen.”

Engineering Change Order capabilities: Having release management capabilities would help teams understand and separate file history for their specific versions.

These limitations led to challenges, particularly highlighted in collaborative scenarios involving multiple team members where users would override each other's changes, and work on outdated files, as there was no clear source of truth. These limitations could result in costly consequences, Julius noted that:

“Sometimes a 15-minute day delay can be more costly than 4 hours of work - if that 15-minute delay makes you miss for an ordering window and now the fabricator won't get the parts the next day - you just lost a day of work because of those 15 minutes.”

Finding A Solution

When the time came to look for GrabCAD alternatives it was clear to Motivo that they needed a solution that would include key aspects such as cloud storage, version tracking, administrative controls, user permissions, and the ability to access their files at all times from anywhere. They explored various alternatives such as Kenesto and SolidWorks PDM but found them to be complex, time-consuming to learn, and rigid. When the team came across Bild, they recognized its alignment with their vision for an efficient CAD management solution that would enable them to continue working in a fast-paced environment while also providing them with these key capabilities.

Switching to Bild

Jeffrey, a Lead Mechanical Engineer at Motivo, highlighted that the onboarding process was quick and smooth - it involved learning Bild’s workflows, PLM features, and importing their data. In about a week's worth of time, the team at Motivo was onboarded, trained, and had their data set up on Bild. Not only was the onboard easy, minimally disruptive, and painless but it was also openly received by the engineers. Initially, there was a concern among Motivo’s team leads around the check-in/check-out process being a learning curve for engineers, but to their surprise the team quickly adopted it, effectively preventing accidental overwrites and increasing collaboration. Not only are their mechanical and mechatronics engineers actively contributing by modifying content on Bild, but Motivo has also expanded Bild to their shop teams and e-tech teams who use Bild’s 3D CAD viewer for reference of their models.


After using Bild for quite a while the team highlights that Bild had significantly improved communication among engineers, ensuring mindful file handling, and enhancing the approval process among other benefits:

Effective File Management: Bild’s file management has transformed how Motivo's teams collaborate and manage their documents, ensuring a seamless and organized workflow. As Julius noted, "We haven't had a single case of accidental overwriting - this doesn't happen anymore with the check-in/check-out process." This not only safeguards data integrity but also boosts productivity by streamlining document access and editing.

Streamlined Collaboration: Bild has improved Motivo’s collaboration by streamlining processes and enhancing communication. Julius points out, "I’m seeing a lot more communication which is a good thing, and a lot more heads up on the files you’re about to check out and the biggest game changer is with assemblies - it allows people to work together a lot more effectively by virtue of seeing who has what files checked out and being able to work on other things while files are in progress so as to not step on each other's toes." File ownership along with Bild’s integrated workflows have fostered a more

efficient and collaborative environment within Motivo, ultimately boosting productivity and teamwork.

Enhanced Approval Process: Motivo’s approval process has significantly improved while using Bild, providing users with a more streamlined and foolproof system. As Julius puts it, "It has improved the approval process - we approve the drawing, and by approving the drawing you approve the parts. You’re ensuring that the entire team is working on the up-to-date version." Not only has Bild expedited the approval process but it has also ensured that teams are consistently on the same page, thus reducing errors and ensuring that projects move forward with the most current information, ultimately leading to more efficient and reliable outcomes.

Intuitive Fast-Paced Platform: Bild's platform stands out, offering users a fast-paced, intuitive system. In contrast to other systems like ENOVIA, which often demand extensive training and rigid administration, Bild has impressed Motivo users with its user-friendliness. As Jeffrey noted, "It's very different from my past experiences with other systems like ENOVIA which is completely unintuitive and takes a week of training for it to be functional. And with systems like that you almost have to have a CAD administrator that's really enforcing rules and processes whereas with Bild we have more flexibility, it's smooth, and overall intuitive." Bild's intuitive platform enabled the team to easily transition into Bild and minimized any learning curve and disruptions to their day-to-day workflows.

Project Management: During our conversation with the team, Jordan (Mechanical Engineer) also mentioned that “Bild's in-time rendering capability, was a huge improvement from our previous experience with Kenesto since it allows rendering of any file version for better visualization while also making it easy and fast to view CAD from any previous version.” Jordan now uses the 3D Viewer and the feedback feature to manage tasks and design reviews, eliminating third-party tools.

Motivo now works with confidence knowing they are constantly working on the latest designs. The increased efficiency brought by the system's security measures saves them hours every week and reduces frustrations stemming from miscommunication. They use Bild daily to manage and reference all of their groundbreaking designs. Julius and the rest of the team envision expanding their usage of Bild to share CAD models with clients and vendors in the future, allowing for real-time model progress tracking instead of outdated and time-consuming email exchanges. Overall, Bild has successfully enriched Motivo's collaboration and file management practices, fostering smoother communication, improved version control, and heightened efficiency across their engineering endeavors.

Learn more about Motivo here