3D Software

How the MakerOS platform is helping 3D printing businesses collaborate and manage workflows

MakerOS is a web-based collaboration platform designed for digital fabrication and 3D printing companies, and their clients. The company provides a fully integrated software platform consolidating the tools needed for 3D printing enterprises to manage their day-to-day operations. Clients on the other hand, use the MakerOS software as an online hub to communicate with the 3D printing firm in question; in this sense the software facilitates collaboration.

Founded in 2015, a number of companies have since benefited from using the MakerOS web-based software to improve their client workflows, and increase their profits. The company’s clients have ranged from solo entrepreneurs just beginning in the 3D printing industry, to SMEs with a handful of machines, and finally big innovation labs and makerspaces.

Examples of these clients include the likes of Roboto.NYC, based in Brooklyn; mHUB, headquartered in Chicago; and Vision Miner, a company based in Irvine, California, that provides industrial 3D printing services. Each of these firms have leveraged the MakerOS software platform to improve client workflows, manage orders, and increase revenue in the process. Rob Lent, VP and Co-Founder of Vision Miner states that  “At Vision Miner, we get a lot of job submissions – MakerOS has helped us organize everything, stay on top of client communication, and see the statistics of our service over time.” 

“It’s also increased the quality of how we process orders, which has translated directly to more orders being processed.”

MakerOS project management. Photo via MakerOS.
MakerOS project management. Photo via MakerOS.

The origins of MakerOS

The MakerOS software features a number of tools for 3D printing companies to leverage to manage their day-to-day operations and complete projects more efficiently. This includes a Public Autoquoter tool (PAQ), an online 3D viewer, a file sharing and messaging portal, an inventory manager, and a payment portal. Altogether it creates a suite of integrated tools designed to optimize project workflows. 

The company originally began when its founder and current CEO, Mike Moceri, grew frustrated from dealing with clients and managing the workflow of projects while he ran a 3D printing service bureau in Chicago back in 2013. These issues were exacerbated, he explains, when the company received an order to print approximately 15,000 individual parts for a toy line. Moceri and his team charged less than $1 per cubic centimeter printing in PLA and Nylon PA12 for the job at the time. However, years later Moceri realized that they were vastly underpaid for the work his company had done: “The project ended up being a very challenging one, and after some time gaining more experience over the years, I realized that, considering how immensely large the job was, we should have priced about 70% more than what we originally quoted.”

As such, Moceri then went on to launch MakerOS in 2015, aiming to help 3D printing and fabrication companies better manage projects, including how to quote and price them for different technologies and materials

The MakerOS Public Autoquoter tool. Photo via MakerOS.
The MakerOS Public Autoquoter tool. Photo via MakerOS.

The advantages of the MakerOS platform

When designing the software platform, the MakerOS team identified that most of the tools needed for 3D printing companies to operate and manage project and client workflows, which includes quoting systems, online 3D viewers, online file hosting services and more, were dispersed across many different, costly platforms. However, each of the tools are necessary to facilitate collaboration and communication, leading to successful projects.

MakerOS therefore set about consolidating those tools into one platform for digital fabrication and 3D printing companies to leverage. The software, which users interact with through an online dashboard, is white-labeled and thus fully customizable, allowing companies to match it with their branding. Additionally, as the platform is based online, the software enables managers to remotely manage both clients and teams, from home.

Its features include the PAQ, an automated quoting system which can be customized so managers can set rules to regulate which quoted projects can be immediately paid for and which ones need manual review. The PAQ is also integrated with the other tools on the MakerOS platform, which includes the inventory manager, online 3D viewer, and client communication hub. This allows the client’s quote to easily adjust to the project workflow, therefore easing the management process of the project. 

MakerOS Calculator tool on a tablet. Photo via MakerOS.
MakerOS Calculator tool on a tablet. Photo via MakerOS.

An example of a company that has benefited from the project management and client workflow offered by MakerOS’ collaboration platform is Vision Miner. The firm receives regular orders for 3D printed PEEK, PEKK, ULTEM and carbon fiber composites parts for rapid prototyping, low-volume production, and R&D projects. It opted to use MakerOS to help organize its projects and keep up with client communication: “Over the last 10 months we’ve tried several other systems, but landed back on MakerOS each time because of the way it manages jobs. The interface of MakerOS and the communication from their team has made figuring things out easy,” adds Rob Lent.

Roboto.NYC, a design and fabrication shop specializing in 3D printing, 3D scanning, laser engraving/cutting, CAD and model making, has also taken advantage of the MakerOS platform. The company has used the software to reduce its development cycle while increasing its revenue within the first year of using the software: “In less than a year of implementing MakerOS, we saw our revenue grow ten-fold and our average development cycle went from three weeks to just four days,” comments Aljosa & Rob, Co-Founders of Roboto.NYC.

Finally, mHUB, an incubator focused on physical product development and manufacturing, also utilizes the MakerOS software to manage its 3D printing machines and jobs. In its incubator, the company houses a dedicated 3D printing lab with Polyjet, SLS, SLA, FDM, and Metal systems that any of its members can use for product development. It currently has 273 members, with 937 products launched. However, managing all those projects, and determining which member uses the machine at a given date and time, proved difficult. Using the MakerOS software allowed the firm to better manage its 3D printing jobs through the dashboard,which allowed mHUB to review, accept, and process requests from each member company. 

“We would never have figured out how to manage orders from our members. It would have cost us a fortune to do it on our own,” explains John Welin, Shop Manager of mHUB.

If you’d like a better process for quoting and taking on orders, as well as less overhead and increased revenue, request a free demo of MakerOS. Test the software and experience the benefits at no cost – your first 30 days with the MakerOS are free.

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Featured image shows MakerOS Calculator tool on a tablet. Photo via MakerOS.