How the Autodesk Fusion Industry Cloud Revolutionizes the Modern Workplace

Trent Still Trent Still June 12, 2024

5 min read

The modern workplace is a complicated network of software solutions tailored to distinct business challenges and departmental needs. According to Forrester, navigating through an astounding 45 different apps or services daily has become the norm for many.  

At the root of this digital maze are siloed processes and fragmented data connections. Yet, this complexity carries a hefty price tag, measured in dollars and other valuable resources like precious time. In fact, the same study concluded that employees spend roughly 12 hours each week buried in their screens, mining for necessary information. That means nearly a third of our work time is devoted to just searching for data. 

Examples of platforms in the workplace

Now, for a moment, think about the ways in which platforms have reshaped our lives outside of the workplace. Social media giants like Facebook and Instagram have transformed our interactions. E-commerce giants like Amazon have catalyzed a shopping habit revolution. Streaming services like Netflix and Apple have completely shifted our media consumption. These companies aren’t just apps or websites; they’re platforms – vast, interconnected networks that have rewritten the script of our daily lives. 

Platforms have entered the workplace

The technology that has been a game-changer in our personal lives is now making its mark on the business landscape. Platforms are promising a similar revolution in the way we work. Industries worldwide are channeling strategic investments into speeding up digital adoption, sustainability, artificial intelligence, and innovative work methods.  

In a report last year, Gartner forecasted that by 2028, over half of all enterprises will leverage industry cloud platforms to propel their business initiatives, transitioning from a disruptive tech trend to an essential business tool.  

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Autodesk recognizes that the rapid evolution of technology poses challenges for our customers. Yet, within these challenges lie vast opportunities for growth and advancement.  

As a response, Autodesk has built industry-specific cloud platforms tailored to enhance customer outcomes: Autodesk Fusion, Autodesk Forma, and Autodesk Flow. We’re driving the acceleration of digital transformation and industry cloud for the design and manufacturing industries, readying our customers for their next hyper-growth phase in product development.  

What is the Autodesk Fusion Industry Cloud?

The Autodesk Fusion Industry Cloud offers unified workflows, connecting data and advanced automations

The Fusion Industry Cloud is a dynamic, adaptable, and data-centric ecosystem for design and make professionals comprised of four key components:  

1 – Data

Data is the backbone of the Fusion Industry Cloud, essential for managing and optimizing how we oversee our facilities, products, and projects. 

2 – Autodesk Platform Services

Autodesk Platform Services offers a customizable environment for developers at organizations with complex needs, providing deep integration with Autodesk’s capabilities. It unites our products, teams, and collaborators, ensuring seamless workflow and interaction. In tandem, API Access opens our platform to innovators from various fields, enabling them to create specialized solutions that extend our existing toolset. This is also what fuels our thriving partner ecosystem, offering a framework for innovation and shared success. 

3 – Automation

We’ve also built the Fusion Industry Cloud on the foundation of automation, augmentation and AI. Because one of the easiest ways the Industry Cloud can free up your time is through automation, we’ve focused on delivering outstanding automation capabilities to Fusion across the design and manufacturing processes. For example, machining automation features can eliminate hours of monotonous, non-value-added tasks.   

4 – Fusion Extensions

Fusion Extensions provide customers with the agility to utilize advanced features such as 5-axis machining or generative design to enhancing their technical capacity. They enable teams to access tailored tools on-demand, aligning with the job at hand without long-term investment in niche solutions. 

5 – Partner Network

And, crucially, our partners are the framework of this extended Platform, ensuring seamless interoperability and collective growth among diverse solution providers.  

CloudNC is an example of a partner that is harnessing our open API to develop pioneering AI-powered CAM assist technologies that are readily accessible through Fusion for streamlined manufacturing workflows. Another example is Makersite who’s augmenting the product development process by integrating real time insights into the sustainability of your products. This allows designers and engineers to make informed decisions up front saving the costly process of re-work or re-development.  

Additionally, our partnership with Cadence enables electronics engineers to leverage Cadence’s Printed Circuit Board (PCB) design tools with Fusion. Any updates made in one system are automatically reflected in the other to fast-track product development and mitigate errors. 

Leveraging the Fusion Industry Cloud

Examples of leveraging the Fusion Industry Cloud

To effectively utilize tools across your teams, seamless information sharing is essential. A staggering According to Autodesk’s 2024 State of Design and Make report,  86% of manufacturing leaders highlight the need for enhanced collaboration. Robust connectivity isn’t just a luxury; it’s the bedrock of our modern work practices. 

So, what would all of this look like in the real world? Like this –  

You’re using Inventor, with your data neatly organized in Vault. You’ve just put the finishing touches on a car seat design. On release, with Vault sync activated, the design seamlessly transitions into Fusion and instantly becomes accessible to your broader team. Set up alerts or connect to Slack through our data model API for immediate updates.  

In Fusion, your specifier verifies the bracket’s structural integrity, the supplier for the control module confirms the housing’s fit, and your machinist starts applying toolpaths to the part. Meanwhile, your marketing manager uses rendering tools to produce visuals for a pitch. Thanks to our cloud data model, everyone can effortlessly access and interact with the correct, up-to-date data. 

Throughout this entire process, the Fusion Industry Cloud powers the data connections and maintains a traceable record of activity. It’s this type of data flow that reduces waste,  increases throughput and builds trust among teams.  

The Fusion Industry Cloud truly puts the goal of better collaboration within reach.  And better collaboration means better, faster, more efficient products.

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