Blog Menu

Always Room for Improvement

October 22, 2005

Filed under: additive manufacturing,event — Terry Wohlers @ 18:18

In recent weeks, I’ve had the opportunity to attend the Stratasys and Z Corp. user conferences in Florida and New Hampshire, respectively. Both were excellent. One of the most interesting sessions at the two events was the formation of the “wish list” by the customers in attendance. In case you are not familiar with wish lists, they are a chance for users to voice what they would like to see added or changed in their products.

The customers at both user conferences created lengthy lists of problems that they hope will be solved. One might wonder why these lists are so long after 10-15  years of development. (Stratasys introduced its first machine in 1991, while Z Corp. introduced its first in 1996.) While this may seem puzzling on the surface, there’s a good reason. As new generation products are introduced, and as customers expand the range of applications, new problems (and opportunities) develop. The best system manufacturers seek customer input and refine their products to make them as good as they can possibly be. 

I could not help but think that at least a few of the employees of these two companies were a little uncomfortable having an industry consultant and analyst witness live and unpredictable customer input. What I found was that they were completely open to new ideas and advice and were not afraid to have others hear it like it is. It sent a strong message to me that both companies are serious about customer satisfaction and the future of this industry, even if it means exposing some dirty laundry.