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Life is full of decisions - what college major to opt for, which career path to follow, whether to move cities for a job or stay put, whether to switch career paths midstream for a more fulfilling life. You know what I mean.
As a librarian, your professional life is as full of choices and decisions to be made. OK, so maybe they're not as life changing as the ones I've just listed, but they're important. However, it's a challenge. You have hundreds of parts to choose from and some are duplicated. You're struggling with legacy systems, missing, inaccurate, or inconsistent data, poor part data quality. You've gulped down more cups of coffee than you'd care to count, and you finally clutch your head and make less than optimum part selections.
Now imagine that you could reduce parts-related costs, eliminate part duplication, designate and limit parts used for new designs, select optimum parts for functional applications, and minimize the number of managed parts – all while maintaining flexibility to effectively use new technology. Sounds like a tall order, doesn't it? But it can be done.
You can significantly improve parts management, lower costs, and streamline part selection by using Preferred Parts Lists (PPLs). While procurement, components engineering, and manufacturing teams define preferred parts, as the librarian, you can assign PPLs in EDM.
With the use of PPLs, your enterprise improves the quality and performance of new designs by selecting and using the best available parts of proven reliability and performance that adhere to required regulations. You avoid incompatibility (manufacturing, environment), and minimize sole-source risks and cost variability.
You also minimize costs and avoid duplication by using fewer parts because of smaller inventories, which maximizes your purchasing power and results in fewer purchase orders. Furthermore, the use of PPLs minimizes lead times by strengthening the supply chain and reducing engineering and procurement cycle time.
Even better, standardization simplifies the mundane but necessary tasks of:
You and your designers can easily choose parts based on parameters such as preferred suppliers, industry standards, proven performance, reliability, durability, quality, assured availability, continuity of supply, lead time, capacity, best value to enterprise, and so on.
But how do you manage preferred parts? You could develop a strategy by way of:
In Allegro EDM, a librarian can create multiple PPLs and have hierarchical PPLs (parent-child relationship). For example, you can have a parent PPL for RF parts and multiple child PPLs for 1GHz, 2GHz, 3GHz RF parts.
To make it easier for designers to quickly distinguish between parts, assign attributes to PPLs such as color. For example, use different colors for power PPLs and PPLs for capacitor. In Part Information Manager, part search results display the color of a PPL thus speeding up engineers' part selection process.
You can associate parts with PPLs in any of the following ways:
In Allegro EDM Database Administrator
Through Database Editor
Using Allegro EDM Data Exchange for batch assignment of parts to PPLs. Using Data Exchange, you can also, if needed, import an already existing PPL from a non-Cadence data source.
Designers can associate one or more PPLs to a design using Allegro EDM Project Wizard. PPL assignment can be restricted, that is the PPL Only mode. In this case, only parts in the PPL can be added to the design. Or, you can use the non-restricted mode, that is, PPL Plus, where parts not in the PPL can be added to a design, but with a warning.
Not working with an Allegro EDM project but want to define PPLs? Easy. Use the project_ppl directive in the project CPM file. Furthermore, ECAD administrators can define PPLs for an entire site using the the same directive in the site.cpm file.
Making decisions about parts will always involve juggling priorities, budgets, timelines, and so on, but PPLs can make your life as a librarian easier. It's said that playing favorites is bad, but in this case, go ahead! It's good.