Fall Festival 2022

October 31, 2022 | Blog
A tradition that goes back to the beginning years of Indesign, LLC is the annual Fall Festival. An event created to include Indesign families, the Fall Festival gives us a glimpse at the other hats that Indesigners wear. For an afternoon, within the Indesign walls, our team gets the opportunity to pause and set down their work “hats”. Some put on the proud parent "hat" as they walk through with their little unicorns, superheroes, and princesses. If we’re being honest, they probably chase more so than walk. (more…)
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Company Picnic 2022

September 28, 2022 | Blog
It may be true the only constant in life is change, but I think there’s one more constant we can add to the list. A picnic on a sunny summer day is always a good thing! The Indesign, LLC team did just that on a warm August day with blue skies and a slight breeze. We rented a pavilion at Fort Harrison State Park, ordered Chick-Fil-A, served ice cream, laid out several yard games (and decks of cards for those who prefer shade), and had a picnic. (more…)
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The Requirements Process

August 31, 2022 | Blog
A good requirements process iterates to produce requirements quality and completeness sufficient to permit design and development work to be carried out with acceptable risk. These are the basic steps: Identify the stakeholders and needs Determine the requirements Analyze the requirements Document, communicate, and get feedback Review and revise the requirements We need to know the stakeholders, who they are, and what they need. Requirements management is a people problem. We could spend months designing and building something perfectly, but it would be for nothing if it’s not what the stakeholders want. They have the final say. It is critical to understand their problems and motivations. We have to adopt their perspective and vision as the reference point for determining and deriving requirements. Determine the Requirements We need to determine the requirements by digging. They may only exist in the mind of the client, and they may be limited. Projects are critically vulnerable at the stage where requirements are poorly defined and sometimes clients need help exploring the details. It can be dramatically cheaper to refine the requirements than to build the wrong thing and fix it. It is always better if the engineers aren’t guessing, and we can’t rely solely on our experience and assume we know what is best because we’ve done something like it before. Invoking curiosity, asking lots of open-ended questions, interviewing, hypothetical “what if” scenarios, user stories, prototypes, diagrams, simulations, and demos can be powerful. It is part art, part science. Analysis of Requirements Analysis and conceptual mastery before making anything will reduce schedule and cost risk. Nothing can replace critical thinking. Our goal is complete and consistent requirements. It is an iterative activity, balanced between “top-down” and “bottom-up” thinking. We need to listen to nagging doubts, and also be aware that we can reach a point of diminishing returns. Analysis paralysis is real, and it takes judgment to know when to stop. Documenting the Requirements Requirements, assumptions, conditions, and constraints should be documented as a basis for conversation and feedback. Words, block diagrams, flow charts, illustrations, and hand sketches count. Expensive or elaborate requirements management tools and processes don’t always produce better outcomes, but a requirements baseline and change-control procedure to identify, track, and communicate changes can be very helpful. We need to tailor the approach based on the people, project, and level of risk involved. Just like requirements analysis, requirements documentation and review can become an endless cycle. At some point, we must start building. Revising the Requirements We should expect requirements to evolve during a project. Proactive review and revision can prevent rework and promote efficiency. Change is inevitable, and incompleteness becomes apparent during implementation. Timely revision, even if it’s just in time, and agreement are key. A lot of change early is much better than change later during development, which can be orders of magnitude more costly in terms of budget and schedule. Requirements should be reviewed individually and as a complete set, often, among the project team and with stakeholders. Revisions and additions can be proposed and approved as needed, tracked, and re-baselined. In Conclusion Iterating through this requirements management process takes discipline and may not feel like progress but the feeling will be much worse if requirements are neglected and the schedule and budget targets are missed due to rework. If we are disciplined early, we may be free from budget and schedule woes later. The results may seem simply miraculous. About Indesign, LLC Indesign, LLC uses a proven process for new product development and electrical engineering to deliver your projects on schedule, with high product quality, and within your budget requirements. Our product development process was designed for complete product development projects, beginning with product concept development & ending with design introduction into manufacture. Contact us at (317) 377-5450 today to get started!
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The Requirements Guide

July 29, 2022 | Blog
Our process improvement initiative on requirements resulted in some updates to our checklists and quality process tools, but some of the things we learned didn’t have an obvious place to go. Some of the things we learned seemed worthy of standing on their own as something new. We created a requirements guide to capture the rest. (more…)
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Central Indiana Top Workplaces 2022 Award

June 24, 2022 | Awards
Indesign, LLC has been named one of the Top Workplaces in 2022 by The Indianapolis Star, for the 12th year in a row. The list is based entirely on employee feedback gathered through a third-party survey administered by employee engagement technology partner Energage, LLC. The anonymous survey uniquely measures 15 drivers of engaged cultures that are critical to the success of any organization. These include alignment, execution, and connection, just to name a few. (more…)
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Improving the Requirements Process at Indesign

May 31, 2022 | Blog
In our previous blog, we made the case for why requirements are so important. Convinced of their importance, we started a process improvement initiative in 2019 within our embedded software team to improve our approach to requirements. As an ISO 9001 certified company, we have a quality management system which includes processes for our engineering disciplines. Our mission was to review and improve our firmware processes and tools related to firmware requirements to promote better outcomes for our company, our engineers, and our clients. (more…)
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Starting with the End in Mind: The Importance of Requirements

April 5, 2022 | Blog
Some people say, “Enjoy the ride; it’s not just about getting to the destination,” or something like that. For some things in life that’s true, and good advice. It’s also true, to a degree, for product development. We enjoy the process of building new systems. Helping our clients solve their problems is what we do, and we have fun doing it. But product development usually has strict expectations for budget and schedule. This isn’t a casual joyride. A product development is a purposeful endeavor, and in some cases we are setting out to do something which has never been done before. (more…)
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Indesign, LLC Named 2022 Best Places to Work in Indiana

March 18, 2022 | Blog
Indesign, LLC was recently named one of the Best Places to Work in Indiana for the 13th year in a row. This program was created by the Indiana Chamber of Commerce and Best Companies Group, which has recognized Indesign, LLC as a Hall of Fame Company for making the list at least 60% of the time in the program’s history. This statewide survey and awards program is designed to identify, recognize, and honor participating employers in Indiana with leading workplace cultures. The list is made up of 125 companies. “We are proud to once again be selected as one of the Best Places to Work in Indiana and are especially honored to receive the Hall of Fame designation.” said Anne Walz, Human Resources Manager. “This is truly an award for our team, who make Indesign a very special place to work.” The final rankings will be announced at an awards ceremony on Thursday, May 12, 2022. About Indesign, LLC Indesign is a multi-discipline engineering design firm that provides full turnkey electronic product development, servicing a wide variety of clients. With a proven track record of helping companies develop new electronic devices, the design team works with clients to make their projects successful. Engineering disciplines consist of electrical/circuit design, RF/wireless design, software/firmware design, mechanical design, human factors design, and testing/validation with a strong emphasis on products utilizing embedded microprocessors and DSPs. Contact us at (317) 377-5450 to learn more about our services today!
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What’s in a Name? 25 Years of “Indesign”

February 28, 2022 | Blog
A little over 25 years ago, teams of people were planning to launch a new company. The code name for the new company was Phoenix as the teams were working for the consumer products division of AT&T Bell Labs/Lucent and those jobs were set to move from Indianapolis to New Jersey. Employment changes were required by all. A small group of people decided to stay in Indy and form an engineering design services company. Drafts of business plans had been written, and plans were being made for staffing, facilities, IT, and finance. Now it was time to come up with a “real” name for this enterprise. A name that could be put on the self-printed business cards and brochures. As with all activities for this fledgling company, then and now, we were all asked to be creative and submit ideas for the name of the new company. How We Started I remember thinking about possible company names on my drive home that day. Within the Bell Labs community, we were referred to as the Indianapolis Laboratories or “Indy Labs”. I was thinking of possible company names that would incorporate that part of our shared past. I really liked “INgineering”, but it looked funny, and I didn’t think the engineering team would allow it. I sat at my Mac and started typing in different variations and finally hit on “IND”, the airport abbreviation for Indianapolis, and “Design”. Removing a duplicate D left INDesign. That seemed to work! I then went through all the fonts I had installed on my trusty Mac on this new combo word. I really liked the look of INDesign in a handwriting font I had recently downloaded. To me, in that font, the logo looked like something new, something just created and exciting. The logo had to be red for the same reason that Ferraris and roses are red. Red means passion and energy, and there sure was a lot of that with this group! The next evening, team members submitted their ideas for names and logos, and there were many good ones. A series of votes were taken, with INDesign emerging as the selection. The tag line “Innovative Design of Products and Systems” was added to the logo. It was a thrill to see the logo on our first building on Caito Drive and on our first website. Where We Are Now A few years after our start, a “real” professional logo was created. The spelling was changed to Indesign with the “In” remaining red, and the silly “new company” handwriting font was replaced with one better representing an established company. “Innovative Design” was replaced with “Engineering Excellence” and our logo has stayed that way ever since. Obviously, the company would have been successful no matter what name was chosen. Shakespeare addressed that point a couple of centuries ago. Now 25 years later, Indesign has clients all over the world, and the staff has more than doubled in size. Indesign is a brand that represents the integrity and efforts of all the people that have worked here, and I’m very proud to be one of them. Contact Us With over 25 years of experience, Indesign, LLC, has developed a proven product development process for a variety of markets, beginning with product concept development and ending with design for manufacturing. If you are interested in learning more about our engineering and design services, contact us today at (317) 377-5450!
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First Full Time Job at Indesign: Two Years Later

January 28, 2022 | Blog
Is there anyone in the world who has ever been able to predict where they will be in a year or two? I’m certainly not one of those people, and I am completely okay with that. From a pandemic affecting everyone on a macro-level, to the micro-scale personal growth, I know I’ve changed, and I’ve changed for the better (bonus points if you get that reference). (more…)
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