Miele’s brand promise is “Always Better”. For decades, Miele has been known all over the world for supplying premium quality appliances for the kitchen, laundry and floor care, as well for use in commercial establishments or medical facilities. The manufacturer, headquartered in Gütersloh, also relies on innovative technologies and the most advanced processes in its in-house design department. This includes CAD input devices that optimally support the workflow of employees.
In the design department at Miele there are a variety of CAD workstations, the majority of which are located at the sites in Gütersloh and Bielefeld. The range of tasks for CAD users is extremely varied. The engineers design everything from simple sheet metal components to more complex plastic modules and even entire appliances —like a washing machine. In addition, Miele also develops and builds its own production facilities.
This results in an interesting and varied but also challenging job for the designers, who are supported by Miele with state-of-the-art workstations. The CAD input devices are used daily and play a crucial role in process optimization and work efficiency. After many years of positive experience with the SpaceMouse devices from 3Dconnexion, Miele finally decided to convert from standard mice to the CadMouse products in 2015, shortly after they were launched on the market.
After only a few employees started working with the CadMouse at the beginning, the word about the advantages of the mouse spread quickly. The mouse, specifically developed for CAD applications, is now used by about 400 employees. A big plus for the designers is the high precision which comes into play particularly when the specially developed CadMouse pad is used as well.
“The CadMouse is super fast, precise, and exact. This definitely makes a difference in daily use, because it is more comfortable and more fluid to work with” explains Christian Niediek, Business Unit Laundry, Mechanical Product Engineering at Miele.
Miele is using both the compact version as well as the full size mouse, depending on the user’s needs, hand size, and grip style. “Thanks to the CadMouse Compact, work has also become much easier for users with smaller hands. Another advantage is that the mice are extremely lightweight, which is a benefit for our employees who travel frequently” says Christian Niediek.
The models in the CadMouse-Pro series are full-size mice. They feature an innovative design and concave shaped mouse buttons. The sloped shape allows for more natural hand posture, and the generously sized thumb rest gives a completely natural feel while gripping the mouse. Miele also uses CadMouse Pro Wireless Left, which has been specially optimized for left-handed users.
“Our designers work with the CadMouse all day long, so an ergonomic design is very important. And here the CadMouse is the winner every time. This is evident from the fact that all employees who work with the CadMouse are reluctant to give it back. With the ergonomic shape and corresponding mouse pad, it is possible to work much more comfortably” explains Christian Niediek.
Miele designers mainly work with Dassault Systèmes’ CATIA Version 5 and CATIA Version 6 or 3DEXPERIENCE programs. In this case, the use of the CadMouse is particularly worthwhile, as it offers special application functions for CATIA compared with standard mice. However, the advanced functions can also be used for office applications as well as all common CAD and 3D applications.
The CAD input device offers a total of five programmable keys that can be assigned to frequently used commands. Multiple commands can be programmed individually for each application via the driver software. “Since the tasks and thus also the applications that are needed are very varied with us, everyone can configure their mouse relatively easily according to their needs. This significantly simplifies the workflow, whether in a CAD application, an office environment or an SAP system” emphasizes Christian Niediek.
For example, the radial menu button offers a considerable advantage for designers at Miele. The button is located behind the mouse wheel and provides direct access to up to eight preferred commands that users can execute with a simple gesture movement. The Miele designers also use the additional middle mouse button as well as the two lateral thumb buttons for individual and application-specific functions.
The expanded functions of the CadMouse provide operating advantages not merely in CAD, but also in applications such as Office. For example, Miele employees use the side thumb buttons to switch from inbox to calendar in Microsoft Outlook.
In addition to the CadMouse models, Miele also uses the 3D mice from 3Dconnexion in the CAD area, such as the SpaceMouse Enterprise. With the patented sensor available on all 3Dconnexion SpaceMouse products, users can intuitively pan, zoom, and rotate 3D models. It also offers a wide range of other features that make it easier to work with CAD applications.
Designers from Miele who use the SpaceMouse products as well as the CadMouse models also benefit from the two-handed workflow, which has been proven to have a positive effect on posture and thus contributes to healthier working habits. “Overall, the products from 3Dconnexion support an intuitive, fluid, and precise way of working” emphasises Gerhard Johannsmann, , IT Workplace Infrastructure at Miele.
The user: Miele
Miele is the world’s leading supplier of premium home appliances for cooking, baking, steaming, refrigeration/freezing, coffee making, dishwashing, laundry and floor care. In addition, there are dishwashers, air purifiers, washing machines and dryers for commercial use, as well as cleaning, disinfection and sterilization equipment for medical facilities and laboratories (Professional division). Founded in 1899, the company has eight production sites in Germany, one each in Austria, the Czech Republic, China, Romania and Poland, as well as the two plants for the Italian medical technology subsidiary Steelco Group. Turnover in the financial year 2020 was around EUR 4.5 billion (of which 29.5 percent in Germany). Miele is represented in almost 100 countries/regions with its own sales companies or through importers. The fourth-generation family-run group employs around 20,900 people worldwide, about 11,050 of them in Germany. Its head office is in Gütersloh, Westphalia.
The solution partner: 3Dconnexion
3Dconnexion develops precise, ergonomic hardware and intelligent, user-friendly software that makes working with common CAD and 3D applications fast, convenient and pleasant. The entire product range, from 3D mice to the CadMouse product line, offers intelligent solutions to experience and interact with the digital world. 3Dconnexion has offices around the world. Its main sites are located in Munich, Monaco and Norwalk, CT.