Computer-aided design programs, or CAD programs, create visual object representations a designer can manipulate as needed. Three-dimensional design programs allow the designer to rotate an image, view an object from all angles and save design changes as the design progresses. CAD programs enable designers to reduce overall product development time by eliminating drawing revision bottlenecks. SolidWorks computer-aided design programs utilize sophisticated three-dimensional computer modeling capabilities. The SolidWorks software is applicable to a variety of industries.
1. Structure your SolidWorks design business. Select a business structure with a Certified Public Accountant experienced with computer and engineering businesses. Common business forms include sole proprietorships, Subchapter S corporations and limited liability companies. Contact a commercial insurance agent about liability insurance. Visit your city or county clerk’s office for a business license and other required permits. Contact your state Department of Revenue about a sales tax license for your SolidWorks design business.
2. Purchase your SolidWorks software programs. Your SolidWorks product suite can include the well-known 3D design program, data management package, simulation software and sustainable design program. Each program is sold separately, and all official SolidWorks products are marketed through SolidWorks sales personnel. You may find an older SolidWorks program on reseller or auction websites. These products are not likely to include current software updates and may not be eligible for product warranties.
3. Lease a business office and production facility. Find a private, professional office that features high-speed Internet service for faster client communication. Ensure that the office includes a conference room for private client meetings and brainstorming sessions. Locate and equip a convenient production facility if you plan to build your SolidWorks designs for clients. Obtain written zoning department approval before you sign a lease.
4. List your SolidWorks product design applications. Utilize SolidWorks design programs to create products for at least nine types of industries. Industrial equipment, manufacturing, aerospace and consumer product designs are within your reach. You can also create designs for medical, electronics, construction, energy and automotive products. You can provide tailored engineering services to satisfy each client’s individual needs.
5. Market your SolidWorks design services. Select industries with which you are knowledgeable, and identify companies that have announced new product development plans, or firms you believe will soon do so. Contact the firms’ engineering managers, and present a SolidWorks design proposal that illustrates your expertise and provides value to the client. Visit industry trade shows to meet prospective clients face-to-face, and demonstrate SolidWorks applications tailored to that discipline. Maintain personal contact with each prospect.