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JANUARY 2019 I SMT007 MAGAZINE 37 mend those that design products understand their BOM, risks, where they may be able to add a second source, and how they may be able to shorten lead times. Octopart is one of those sources of data that can help in decision- making for a lot of those cases. Goldman: That's really good. Las Marias: Yes, because in our previous conver- sations in the industry, they're saying that the designers should just go ahead and design, and then they leave it all up to the fabricators and assemblers to figure out how they're going to manufacture those designs. You're saying that there should be communication between them. Schoenfelder: Absolutely. I think there needs to be communication in the design cycle. Any design is a living, breathing thing as long as it's still being manufactured, and there's a dynamic element to how to manage the supply chain as long as the design is alive. I think that those who are doing the design and develop- ment work need to work with supply chain professionals in their organizations both early and late in the lifecycle of any product. Barry Matties: That's a common statement that we hear time and time again, and it's maybe what we call intuitive wisdom, yet so many people do not heed that advice. Why is that? Schoenfelder: I'm a big believer in the power of data and using data to guide decision-making. I view Octopart as being one of those sources of data that helps make better decisions at any stage in the product life cycle. When you talk about this problem, Barry, I think data is a pretty good way to address it, and it's hard to argue with good information. When armed with the right information, decision-making becomes all that more impactful. Matties: Part of the problem with data in today's world is there is so much. You have to have the wisdom to know what the important data is and ignore the rest. Schoenfelder: Yes. Cutting down on the noise of information is extremely important. Most companies right now are trying to do creative things with data and information, and a lot are just creating a data lake or someplace where data resides but is not properly utilized. I think that appropriate utilization of information is really the key, not necessarily just the informa- tion itself. Matties: If you were to give advice to what you feel the most critical of data would be for a designer to look at, how would you categorize that? Schoenfelder: This is a tough one for me. I'm not a designer, but I think for anybody who's going into a new design, having a vari- ety of information sources available to you about the componentry that you're planning to use is important. Understand the follow- ing questions: Are these products available on the market? How are they priced, and is that consistent with the constraints that I'm going to have in my design? Is there any infor - mation out there that leads me to see risk, meaning is this product distributed widely? Does it have several distributors? Are those distributors stocking the product? What is the current lead time for that product when it's not stocked? Again, how is it priced? Are there data sheets? Is there parametric infor - mation? Are there CAD models that exist for these devices? All of this information when widely avail- able, and I think it drives confidence that what you're designing has some stability to it. When that data and information is lack- ing, it should be a red flag as to the viability of a product and any complexity it might add to your business process because it's just not widely available. Matties: Thank you for your time today, sir. Schoenfelder: Thanks for the interview. I appre- ciate it. SMT007

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