Products for an Effective Government

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Products for an Effective Government: Dynamic Data Management System Support Customer Service

By Judy Silver, Senior Editor

Generating a high volume of complex print jobs, ELDEC, an electronic and electromechanical component manufacturer for aerospace and defense applications found that its configuration management and Product Data Management (PDM) system was outdated and becoming difficult to support.

In order to maintain and engineering drawing revision information and the approval history of engineering releases ELDEC required a more robust system.

“We needed a real time solution for dynamically assembling and delivering critical content to our suppliers,” said Chandru Narayan, Manager and PDM Architect, Information Technology for Lynnwood, Wash.-based ELDEC. “Sending this type of information through e-mail was risky. We needed to deliver information in a stamped and well identified way.”

ELDEC converts all its engineering drawings to PDF format. Sometimes, one item contains multiple attachments. Requirement included bringing all these drawings together into one PDF file, making sure it was stamped with all the necessary business information, including when was this drawing approved, who approved it and what release it is. The stamped PDF then is delivered to either a printer or a file on a desktop.

Desiring to increase functionality, while at the same time leveraging its investment, ELDEC selected AppendPDF Pro from Appligent Inc., which plugged into its existing PDM system. Although the upgrade required ELDEC to make some changes to its network and some clients to upgrade computers, the new system basically is seamless to users.

The Appligent module allows ELDEC to electronically distribute specifications and print them easier. AppendPDF Pro enables ELDEC to date stamp and append multiple files together, providing a workflow history.

The updated system is able to handle increasing volume. Now it generates about 600 drawings a day, up from 200, from three different geographical locations.

“The whole thing is about configuration management,’’ said Narayan. “We wanted to deliver the right document at the right time to the right people. There’s an approval process for everything. Before, this was a problem. Printing was not as efficient due to multiple print jobs clogging the printers. We are now able to send multi-page engineering drawings as one print job to the printers. Stamping was not as thorough as we’re doing now and in addition, we had no way to electronically distribute this information.”

Future plans call for expanding the use of Appligent, including providing a header page with a table of contents when documents get printed out on the printer. Narayan noted that other upgrades might be necessary because Appligent is migrating to a Standard Object Access Protocol (SOAP) server. Instead of installing AppendPDF Pro on every server that does the printing, ELDEC will install the product on one server and all services will be provided from that one location.

For more information on ELDEC, visit

For more information on Appligent Inc., visit

Senior editor Judy Silver can be reached at