Archive for the ‘Construction Software’ category

Dubai Strata Law – what next?

November 24th, 2010

Wednesday 13 October 2010 was the deadline for developers to comply with – Law No 27 of 2007 concerning Ownership of Jointly Owned Properties in the Emirate of Dubai (the “Strata Law“) s introduced in 2007 to regulate jointly owned properties.

A jointly owned property is land or a building divided into units owned individually (such as an apartment or villa) and common areas, being those parts of the property designated for common use by all the owners and occupiers (the “Jointly Owned Property“).

In May 2010, the Land Department issued directions pursuant to the Strata Law (the “Directions“) effective from 13 April 2010 which imposed an obligation on developers to register a Jointly Owned Property Declaration (a “Declaration“) with respect to every Jointly Owned Property within six months . The Declaration is a legal document that sets out relevant information regarding the jointly owned property and the rights and obligations of the owners.

Upon registration of the Declaration and associated survey plans, an association will be formed made up of all owners in the Jointly Owned Property (the “Owners Association“). Once formed, developers can hand over the operation and management of the Jointly Owned Property to the Owners Association.

The Directions provide that a Declaration must be lodged by 13 October 2010.

For complex mixed-use developments that contain a variety of different uses (such as hotel developments) this is proving difficult, costly and time consuming.With respect to developers who are not in a position to lodge their Declaration, the Directions provide that any three or more owners in the Jointly Owned Property may serve a notice on the developer requiring the developer to submit a Declaration.

If the developer refuses or fails to take “substantive steps” to submit a Declaration, the Owners may themselves submit a Declaration to the Land Department and claim the cost of doing so from the developer. In addition, the Director General of the Land Department may take such action that he considers appropriate to enforce the developer’s obligations including preventing the transfer of any unit in a Jointly Owned Property where a Declaration has not been registered.

Typical steps

  • calling a meeting of the Owners to elect an Interim Board to consult with the Developer with respect to service charges and the handover of affairs to the Owners Association and has communicated this process to RERA;
  • the appointment of a lawyer to assist in structuring the development and to prepare the Declaration and any other contractual or constitutional documents; the appointment of a surveyor to commence the drawing of survey plans; and
  • the appointment of an association manager to assist in the registration process and transitioning of the building to the Owners Association.

The Directions grant the Land Department extensive discretion with respect to non-compliance. Developers who are not taking substantive steps to progress compliance will likely test the tolerance of the Land Department with respect to such discretion.

There are extensive disclosure requirements required to be met when selling units in Jointly Owned Property especially when selling off plan. Interim Disclosure Statement must be attached to any contract for the sale of a unit within a Jointly Owned Property where the title to the unit has not been issued by the Land Department and the seller is the developer. The Interim Disclosure Statement must include extensive detail of the project and the unit as prescribed by the Directions.

The interim disclosure provisions will expire on 13 January 2011, from which date a full Disclosure Statement must be attached to any contract for sale. The Disclosure Statement must include a copy of the proposed Jointly Owned Property Declaration for the project as well as extensive detail of the project and the unit as prescribed by the Directions.

Failure to attach an Interim Disclosure Statement, or from 13 January 2011, failure to attach a full Disclosure Statement to a contract for sale of a unit will result in issues with enforceability of the contract.

Location Based Management Systems

October 20th, 2010

When you work wiht multipel subcontract tradesmen for e.g. brickwork, plastering, painting, window frame isntall, glazing etc is it better to finish one room and then start the next, or to finish one task across all rooms and then start the next?

When each task works at a different rate how do you balance the team sizes to decide whether one taks needs multiple teams working  on several rooms simultaneoulsy

How much does location influence the crtical path, float, and optimum resourcing?

How much time and money is lost if no work is happening in room 2 because the tradesman is till working on room 1?

How Owners Benefit from Location-Based Management Systems (LBMS)

Scheduling methods often fall short because they do not transparently show (1) that all possible ways to compress the schedule have been used in the contractor’s schedule nor (2) how risky is the schedule

 During production project engineers monitor the critical path and floatand  compress durations on the critical pathbut often this is done  with good intention but without any realistic plan to achieve this compression, nor with timely  analysis and  coordination with supply chain, resource planning  and sub contractor ability to deliver.

When project durations are  based on a detailed understanding of the scope or resources needed, this manipulation does notadd more value to management and is often pointless.  ‘We are delayed now but we will take some (undefined) catch up action later’. Problems get pushed to the end of the project and there is wishful thinking about the ability to catch up schedules.

 Actual Production progress should give early warning signals to Owners and CM’s that  something must be done to restore production. All control actions should be explicable in detail with quantities, resources, and production rates instead of just best guess, changing durations.

 LBMS before the Start of Construction
Optimized production rates are used in the buy-out of subcontractors, and  it is extremely difficult and costly to change the total duration after subcontractors are bought out. Therefore, schedule optimization and compression should happen before buy-out.

 It is extremely important that work is planned to be continuous. Cascading delays during production happen because of discontinuous work -the  starts and stops of subcontractors. Every discontinuity increases the probability that the schedule will not be executed as planned.  Subcontractors  balance their own work to their convenience when the GC, or CM cannot show that the plan is already balanced.

 Owners need to see  these deliverables for each major design release:

  • Resource-loaded schedules with continuous flow
  • Explanations for any discontinuous work patterns
  • Clear identification of bottleneck trades by General Contractor or CM
  • Detailed explanation of why those bottlenecks cannot be accelerated
  • Risk analysis of the schedule showing the risky areas and the   probability of completing each major milestone
  • Cash flow

 LBMS during Construction
During construction, use the schedule as an early warning system.

  • Track completed locations, to easily calculated the total quantity of work-in-place
  • Report of total manpower on site daily to calculate actual productivity and actual production rates.
  • Use those rates to forecast progress and to identify problems much earlier than in CPM systems.

 Include the following items in the Owner’s Weekly and Monthly reports  :

  • Comparison of completed tasks and locations to plan
  • Explanations for not implementing continuous work as planned
  • Schedule forecast before control actions (when everything continues on the same production rate)
  • Schedule forecast after control actions, and documentation of those control actions (for example, adding 5 carpenters to the drywall crew,  working on Saturdays, 2-shift work for selected tasks, etc.)
  • Problem tasks where production rate is < 80% of planned
  • Percentage of production completed compared to the plan (for the  whole project and each major construction phase, such as foundations)
  • Resource forecast for the next month for each main subcontractor to  reveal unrealistic resource assumption
  • Updated cash flow forecast based on schedule forecast


Parallel LBMS and CPM
Trying to run parallel schedules in a project generally does not work well. CPM schedules traditionally work only as Owner reporting tools and have limited relevance in the field. The information content of a typical CPM schedule is extremely limited,  lacking quantities and resources and show only tasks and durations without revealing the location, manpower and quantity assumptions behind the duration estimates.

Critical path and float are then faulty because they do not consider the requirement to have continuous, balanced flow of resources through the project. Only continuous workflow makes it possible to forecast production and give early warnings of problems.

Schedule optimization using location-based planning typically results in 10-15% compression –  without either the need for additional resources, orfor  increase in risk levels. This compression is achieved so that most of the tasks in the project have continuous flow. All optimization is theoretical unless the schedule is actually followed on-site and parallel schedules undermines this goal unless the schedules exactly match.

Location-based scheduling typically results in better quality, optimized, resource-based schedules in only  70% of the time required to build a CPM schedule.

 To optimize a schedule from scratch takes about 50% of the time of converting a CPM schedule to LBMS and using that as the starting point of optimization. All of these facts speak to abandoning the practice of running parallel schedules.

 CPM is included in LBMS, but only about 20% of LBMS information content is included in CPM (specifically logic layer 5: random CPM links).

Construction – hard bids

October 14th, 2010

  The AGC SmartBrief contained an article revealing the very stark reality of hard bids in the Las Vegas construction market. Las Vegas isn’t the only market hit hard by the economic downturn, but it exemplifies the boom and bust of commercial construction.

 • Here are the statistics revealed in the article:
• Bid value is down 40%
• 15-20 bidders per project
• Gap between high and low bids is 40%
• Bidders are coming in from out-of-state

 In a hard bid scenario it’s the lowest bid that wins. The Owner gets a great price from the bidders: a price as much as 30% below projected cost, or as an article about the Las Vegas market indicates, 40%.

Experienced Owners know that these hard bids come with hidden costs including change orders, delays, and claims that end up costing them additional money. Even if those extra charges were to add 20% to the cost of the winning hard bid the owner has still realized a 10+% saving over the original projected cost.

 Hard bids have become the de facto bidding process

  In an environment where there are smaller projects with plenty of bidders, it’s imperative that you remain competitive on your fees and general conditions. How ? At-risk General Conditions are typically 7-11% and getting skinnierby the day  in this economy. In a hard bid, when your schedule extends by even one month, you’ pay the whole expense out of that 7-11%.Can General Contractors master the schedule, even in hard bid conditions?

 Vico Control can help you to bid a shorter schedule, as well as to manage and to meet that tighter schedule. Vico Control also allows you to vet the credibility of the bids from subs with whom you’ll be sharing the risk. The software and methodology gives you a much clearer, farther-forward-look at the project so that you and your team can make early adjustments. Gain the ability to do ‘what-if scenarios’ and strategize how you will bid the job: and better understand how to attack the project and prepare a more competitive price based on schedule control.

It’s counter-intuitive to think that a tighter schedule mitigates risk yet a quantities-driven, location-based, and resource-balanced scheduling solution will give you a competitive advantage. 

  • You want to develop hard bid strategies quickly, but might not have time to develop a BIM;
  • You know you’ll discover change orders during the project, but you want to find them sooner (and cost them competitively);
  • You understand that construction-caliber quantities drive a more precise schedule and estimate – you just haven’t seen it in action;
  • You want to protect your fee and believe that 4D and 5D BIM done right will mitigate project risk.

  Cost planning allows you to build multiple iterations of the estimate linked to the model progression specification so that every change can be costed, not only in terms of dollar value but also schedule flux.Calculate the cost of the project at a very high level of detail for the parts that are high risk, and leave it at a lower level of detail for those parts that you are subbing out. Use the model’s visual feedback to determine whether you included everything in your cost plan. When an area or element is not highlighted, then it’s not in the cost plan!

RFIs turn into Change Orders which greatly impact the duration and cost of your project. Manage the coordination process to iron out constructability and scheduling issues earlier rather than later. 

 Best practices illustrate that you should also have a BIM database of cost and time elements? This knowledge base permits you to build resource-loaded schedules and cost-loaded estimates. But the question remains: Do you build it or buy it? Communicate the calculated price to management, showing how the bid was developed from the baseline cost plan. This tactic is also useful if the owner allows an open book proposal.

 In the end, it’s all about building trust with the Owner by working in concert, adding value every step of the way. Do it right the first time . Using BIM even in hard-bid situations permits and even encourages this collaborative approach.

Vico Office Named to Top Commercial Construction Products List

September 28th, 2010

Constructech Magazine Gives Nod to Vico Office for Uniqueness and Momentum

 Vico Office, the virtual construction platform from Vico Software, was recently  named to Constructech Magazine’s Top Commercial Construction Products list. The products were judged by Constructech’s editorial team on leading-edge features, uniqueness in the market, customer adoption rates, and usability.

 With Vico Office, General Contractors can combine BIM models from multiple sources (like the architect, structural engineers, and subcontractors) and in multiple formats (such as IFC, Tekla, ArchiCAD, CAD-Duct, and Revit). With the models inside the Vico Office platform, users can take the 3D model all the way from clash detection for coordination and quantity takeoff to 4D scheduling and 5D estimating. The solution permits local-area-network access, so project stakeholders can take part in constructability analyses, cost planning, schedule look-ahead meetings, and budget review sessions.

 “Construction professionals are looking for the solutions that can give them the most bang for their buck. They are looking to make their company better with the implementation of technology, as well as stay up with the latest trends in the construction industry,” says Mike Carrozzo, chief editor of Constructech. “The technology firms with products meeting that demand may prove to be the most successful.”

Vico Software recently announced new functionality for the Vico Office platform, including a new clash detection module. (Please read the corresponding press releases, Vico Software Releases Vico Office Upgrade, and Vico Software Announces Vico Office Constructability Manager.)

 “The Constructech Top Products Award validates the 5D virtual construction vision that Vico has pioneered,” confirmed Mark Sawyer, CEO and President of Vico Software. “We believe that providing an integrated workflow for virtual construction can power data-driven decisions. In bringing efficiencies and savings to construction projects, the transition to 4D and 5D is just as compelling as the preceding moves from paper to computer and from drawings to 3D models.”

5D Virtual Construction Workflow – new release of Vico Office Suite

September 21st, 2010

September 21, 2010 -  Vico Software, the leader in 5D Virtual Construction™, announced a new release of its award-winning Vico Office Suite.

 Vico Office is the first, purpose-built construction software that allows users to “plug in” the BIM authoring application of their choice and then perform:

  • constructability analysis,
  • quantity takeoff,
  • a model-based schedule,
  • model-based estimate,
  • on-site production control,
  • all in an integrated workflow.

 “We know that winning the deal and building the project require more than just creating a 3D model,” stated Clay Freeman, Chief Product Officer at Vico Software. “The Vico Office platform is designed to help GCs, Architects, and Owners work together to thoroughly understand the project: from clash, to quantities, to scheduling, and estimating. One workflow, one platform, all model-based and compatible with many 3D modeling systems.”

 Freeman adds, “There are many enhancements included in this software release, but ourmain objectives were :

  •  Extending the choices of BIM-authoring systems. New Importers. In addition to publishing ArchiCAD, Revit, and Tekla BIMs into Vico Office, users can now import IFC and CAD-Duct files.
  •  Creating a BIM-based cost estimating system. Excel Import. Now users can convert any estimating database to our model-based system within a day. This helps our customers leverage their historical estimating data.
  •  Compare and Update. The “compare and update” utility analyzes project data sets giving the user a complete overview of changes and differences on a number of key metrics. Quantities, unit prices, system costs, and even Takeoff Item names can be compared between projects, or from two different points in time within a project, to give the user a quick report on where differences exist.
  •  Adding coordination and integration to RFI tracking to the 5D Virtual Construction process. Constructability Manager. This new module allows users to combine and compare models, perform automatic and manual clash detection, identify constructability issues, and escalate serious issues to RFI’s.”

For more information on Constructability Manager and its many cost saving features, please contact us on 009714 3365589

 “As an estimator for the majority of my career, and now as Haselden’s Virtual Construction Manager, I’m really excited with the new improvements that Vico is releasing in this version,” stated Todd Ellsworth of Haselden Construction. “One great new feature is having the ability to import from an excel file which will make it possible now to use a standard company database directly inside of Vico Office. This database could come from any of the more widely used estimating programs out there. This feature alone will allow us to continue to be a leader in BIM/VDC while expanding our capabilities to real time estimating from our internal database. I see the ‘Compare and Update’ feature being a wonderful tool to use to help our estimating department and project clients see changes, which will in turn, lead to better management of project budgets. The enhancements that Vico is making in this release are once again pushing their product and us, as well, to be one of the leaders in the 5D arena and with the new importers, allowing for even more models to be used as part of their process.”


 About Vico’s 5D Virtual Construction Workflow
The BIM process starts with 2D construction drawing set comparisons in Vico Doc Set Manager. After the BIM models are completed, users can publish, augment, and compare 3D models from multiple project stakeholders all within the Vico Office Client. For example, the architect can contribute an architectural model in ArchiCAD; the structural engineer can contribute a structural model in Tekla; the mechanical subcontractor can submit a model in Revit MEP; the HVAC subcontractor can submit a model in CAD-Duct.

 These models  combine in Vico Office Constructability Manager where BIM object clashes are identified and resolved. Any  issues not resolved,  are promoted to an RFI and tracked through the project management data flow.

 After the models are coordinated,  the Vico Office Takeoff Manager generates construction-caliber quantities. With these quantities in hand, usersproceed to Vico Control for 4D model-based scheduling and production control.

 Also with those quantities, as the models’ level of detail increases, estimators use Vico Office Cost Planner to create multiple iterations of the 5D estimate. With the estimate in place, the users can track the project budget in Vico Office Cost Explorer, and  the Owner recognizes which decisions have the most impact on the budget and schedule.

BIM – Vico Office Release 2 Extension 1

September 4th, 2010

Another milestone in the development of a full BIM based Construction Management system – the release of  r Vico Office Release 2 Extension 1 software.  

  As the competition for Owners business continues to increase more and more Vico customers usw the full 5D BIM solution to differentiate their companies resulting in big project wins.  Today 3D BIM Clash Detection is so commonplace that savvy customers to win powerful 4D schedules including :Flowline Planning, Production Control, as well as 5D Quantity Take Offs and Estimation  

 Vico continues to lead with the first fully integrated, database driven, 5D solution. Vico Office supports: Revit, Archicad, Tekla, CAD-Duct and IFC models.  Release 2 Extension 1 includes extensive testing by a growing base of 5D customers and provides support for 64 bit hardware, Windows 7, and more BIM software such as CAD-Duct and models in IFC format. 

Enhancements and innovations  include:

  • Powerful tools for Estimating, including Excel Import and Compare and Update
  • A new, fully integrated clash detection and coordination module  Constructability Manager          
  • Excel Import for all your existing estimation datasets
  • Compare and Update compare and resolve two different estimates, quantities, or other formatted datasets
  • Availability of standard datasets for classification systems  both (5D Standard Database) and BIM objects (5D BIM Warehouse).

 The fastest way to ‘lean construction!

Vico Office Seminar – Synergy offices

August 23rd, 2010

Last Friday 10 local construction experts gave up their Friday off day to visit our offices. Why? word of mouth across companies spread the message that  there would be a chance to find out more about BIM concpets and why ‘lean’construction techiques are having such an impact.

 Vico Office is a different way of working with BIM models.  Used for much more than visualization, Vico Office extends the basic 3D model with constructability analysis and coordination, 4D scheduling and production control with flowline principles, and 5D estimating. If you missed out contact us to learn more and read the articles on this blog site, or vist You Tube and see the many demos there.

Let me touch on just one part  f the Vico Office Suite  that will provide a rapid payback for any construction company.
Before you can get any benefit from 3, 4 or 5D BIM you need 2D drawings to start with.   Vico Doc Set Manager is an innovative solution for collating and comparing thousands of construction drawing sets.  We refer to Doc Set Manager as our 2D BIM solution because a successful 3D BIM model starts with identifying changes in the 2D drawing set.

  Each project team  uses the Doc Set Manager to store their drawing sets and to ckly identify either any missing pages, o r pages on which there have been changes. 

Using the mark-up tools, users can quickly cloud and comment on the changes, and assign additional investigation and follow-up to team members.

Does Doc Set Manager automatically highlight the changes?

Yes, it will highlight the changes; it will highlight any line work that has been manipulated or touched in any way.  It is up to you to decide “will this highlighted change impact the project?”  -  only you and your team can decide that.

Where does Doc Set Manager store the DWGs?

Doc Set Manager is a collaborative tool that supports local area networks.  This means you can locate the DWG or PDF file anywhere in the network. You just need to make sure that all project members have access to the network.

 How does the drawing compare with sheets vs. xref’s?

Comparing DWG with xref is possible. Doc Set Manager will compare anything you provide. So if you provide DWG with xref it will present the full DWG file and compare it to the other DWG file . If you would like only to compare the xref just load those to the folder and they will be listed in the Document Register and you can compare them separately.

Do clouds need to be entered in separately each time on future versions?

If you draw a cloud and it is still an active issue,then  it will always be presented and automatically be copied to future versions.

Do I need to buy Vico Office Client with Doc Set Manager?

Yes, you do.  Vico Office Client enables the collaborative workflow, assignments, resolution, and reporting in Doc Set Manager.  As noted earlier, you might like to get 2-3 extra licenses to share with your owner, architect, and subcontractors.

Would MEP designs be too complex to check in this environment?

No, definitely not.

 Does DWG comparison work in paper space?

Yes, how you might use that is to look for date changes, name changes, revisions triangle markers, etc.  If you want to check for keynotes or move keynotes, Doc Set Manager will pick up on those in paper space, as well.

 Sometimes highlighting doesn’t work so well. For example an unchanged line sometimes is color coded as changed. How does that work in the system?

That’s where the Document Register is most helpful in that the Register will tell you that the drawing has or has not changed from the last set to the newer set.  If the Register has indicated red and that the drawing has changed you can work with the color scheme to find any problem but it should not be that difficult with the flexibility of all the tools in the color palette.

 Does this work with Revit?

The answer is yes and what you would do is export the view or drawing that you wanted as a PDF and you would be all set to compare.

  Can I batch plot the actual DWG’s including the mark ups?

Yes, if you have a set of files with mark ups on these then you can print all together as one report with all the clouds and the ability to zoom in the clouds to get more detail.

 If I’m working in Revit, how can I make a PDF so it will be useful for this software?

You can use the export to PDF function or if you have a PDF virtual printer you can use this to create the PDF files.

 Can two or more persons work on one comparison file together?

Yes, absolutely. The product is designed for a collaborative environment meaning multiple users can access the same project: view the same file, compare the same file, create clouds, etc.  All this can be done simultaneously.

  Q: How long has Vico software been on the market and how widely is it used at this point?

 A: About 6 years. So the customers that started have been using this software for that whole period. There are sabout  200 clients globally… More than 100 GC’s in the U.S.  There are more than 1000 trained users in the U.S.  In addition, the Vico Construction Services Team have guided over 350 BIM projects around the world.

…………and if you really want to save a lot of time and money consider line of balance scheduling (a oncept used for the Empire State Building!)

Vico Control is a unique construction scheduling software because it features flowline theory.  This allows the scheduler to work collaboratively with the superintendent to create an optimal schedule based on quantities by location and productivity rates.  Equally important is the ability to “control” the schedule on-site to forecast crew pile-ups and interferences based on actual productivity rates. With this real-time data, the scheduler and superintendent can work together to adjust crew sizes by location to keep the project on track.

More about this in a future post


Vico Office – BIM – what’s it all about?

July 21st, 2010

Immerse yourself in these You Tube videos: -

 multiple demos.

Model-Based (BIM) Estimating

June 17th, 2010

Are  interested in a tool that derives precise, construction-caliber quantities, based on the geometry from Tekla, Revit, and ArchiCAD models.?

 Is it true that can use use model based estimating systems very early in the design process, even when there is no model, only sketches and a narrative.

How can you quickly access the multiple quantity types in the model and customize  their specific calculations to account for consumption rates, waste factors, and conditions?

How can you work closer with subcontractors to  jointly reeuce costs and  negotiate mutually-beneficial contracts witha  clear scope ?

Can you convert  a legacy estimating database into a model-based system se.g. Timberline, MC2, or RIB ?

How cna you use a 5D model, estimators to guide the Owner through budget impacts:

  •   What would happen to the cost and the schedule if we added a 5-floor parking garage?
  •  How to determine the correct mix of retail and residential in mixed-use buildings.
  •  Compare green materials in terms of installation time, cost, and projected energy savings.
  •  Pinpoint which decisions have the greatest impact on the budget.

Whether you team works with Tekla, ArchiCAD, or Revit models, we can show your team how to derive construction-caliber quantities from the model geometry. See how to edit formulas for model-based and non-model-based quantities.

Access the information from past projects built with Vico Office, or bring in data form tioehr estimating systems  via Excel Import, and leverage all the data collected by linking it to the 3D model and its quantities.

As more and more detail is known about the project see the benefits of creating iterative cost plans  presented in an easy-to-read Excel-like interface. Click on any of the line item to highlight the components contained in the model to determine whether the estimate is missing any scope… and add it back in quickly.

 With the model and cost plan in place, the estimating team can work with the owner to examine the budget. With a simple stoplight color scheme, the estimator can quickly determine which building elements are causing a budget overrun, or perhaps have not been calculated properly

Model-based estimating is conceptually no different than the paper-based processes in place now – there are just different inputs and huge benefits. Let us show you!

Clash detection with BIM from Vico software

June 8th, 2010

Coordination Is More than Clashes

Pipes that run into HVAC and cut through a floor is oen example of a clash. To  identify and to fix these issues before you get to site is a great vlaue add of BIM technology that can easily save a project hundreds of thousands of dollars and weeks of wasted time waiting for components to be re-fabricated.

 3D Coordination is often thought of  asa geometric planning tool to organize Architectural, Structural, and MEP systems within a designated space. However, there is also a time factor involved.

 To take full advantage of   BIM 3D Coordination, start early  in the process and allow enough time for necessary design changes prior to installation. Co-ordinate:

  •  Branch and fixture locations  prior to framing interior walls and ceilings.
  • Risers and chases prior to pouring concrete decks.
  • Underground utilities prior to pouring footings.

Oganize our 3D Coordination exercise into a system priority structure to ive a model-based schedule that aligns with fabrication and procurement activities for both systems,and exterior skin and structural steell.

Vico proposes other types of clashes besides geometry and sequencing:

  •  Overlooked changes in drawing sets
  • Scheduling clashes: too many crews in the same space
  • Crew size/duration issues that lead to conflicts.

Vico Service’s proprietary coordination resolution by location has been documented to cut the clash detection cycle by 40%, to provide more time to develop shop drawings and to prefabricate more components off-site, and allow more time to optimize the flow of crews on-site.

 The addition of 2D and 4D clash detection to  3D geometry supports a system of project control that extends beyond preconstruction to fully integrate all aspects of the project from design through move-in.

Let us show you how.

Use BIM to win at the RFP stage.

May 13th, 2010

In  economic recession, the building market is even more competitive.

Lower prices with hard bids and more bids to choose from is the norm. and owners still seek more ways to save money and to accelerate project schedules .  So how can  contractors distinguish themselves.

BIM is exactly the tool to provide the Owners the savings and to gives the General C ontractor a competitive advantage t. Many contractors claim that they do “BIM;” but most contractors,, only clain it as a marketing tool or for 3D coordination.

Generatw cost savings and providie the Owner the confidence that they will get delivery in budget on time. 

 The RFP stage is when you win and lsoe proejcts and is htest time to demonstrate th benefit sof BIM

 The typical RFP process is broken into these categories:

 • Interview: 5% – 25% of total

 • Plan, Pricing and Schedule: 25% – 40% of tota

l • Qualifications: 40% – 70% of total

Clients are very interested to kno how the  5D virtual construction workflow help in completing a project successfully. Use the model as a presentation  tool to “wow” the client but that’s  not enough anymore.  Demonstrate the integrated workflow during the interview and  transparently  illustrate the 5D BIM approach to the project . “Talk to the model” and communicate to the client the schedule and opportunities for saving  money and time.

The lowest reasonable price by a qualified GC is a strong factor but  Owners are wise to contractors who low-bid and live off  change orders to recover. With conceptual estimates, GCs hone in on a true cost based on quantities, locations, and past subcontractor efficiency rates. This focus on quantities, locations, production rates) enables meaningful subcontractor negotiations.  The Subcontractors are more confie=dent and accurate when bidding off the same model as GC . so there is lowe rneed for risk contingency and tprices are transparent .  This porcess is enahced when the subcontractors uses the virtual cosntruction model with the GC to resolve constructability issues before going to site .

 With more efficient schedules and better logistics, there’s no need for stops and starts and last minute rush towards completion.You are able to frequnetly track the target cost versus  actual cost to manage budget overruns and  resolution.

The fastest, reliable schedule is often less important a factor in a bid but in many  cases, it is the most critical factor.  GCs often have difficulty explaining their schedules to a n owner when they can’t express it in an easy-to-understand graphical presentation. There are many benefits to shwoing  a 4D schedule in a bid. The combination of flowline theory and production control gives more accurate planning, GCs can help their Subs remove the typical stops and starts that simply waste labor.

 Owners know that a proven team will consistenlty deliver the best results. They look specifically for the teams with which they want to work – a team that communicates well and is trustworthy. A poorly-structured or overly-complicated presentation undemrines that trust. Owners  need to hear  a crdible proposal and plan.  Use  a 5D BIM model to drive your presentation, so the team members are able to clearly illustrate the key points in  language that a layperson will understand.

 Even more compelling is the ability to show the Owner exactly what is meant , “a picture is worth a thousand words.” and lot more in won projects. This is one of the first benefits of BIM.” Techniques -. This is so much easier to express with a 5D model, especially when the Owner is a layperson. Too often, construction companies try to communicate the building methodology with non‐integrated, non-visual techniques, which only muddies the water. Your firm’s integrated construction methodology can be easily expressed with transparency through the 5D model. Owners appreciate a well-defined process for planning and managing the job, especially when the plan includes objective measurements and reporting.

BIM is not a magic bullet.  BIM-capable does not just mean walk‐through animations – it is an integrated construction environment rich with precise quantities, mean and methods, flowline scheduling, and powerful visualizations that supports lean construction methodologies.

 If you’re committed to adding BIM to your portfolio, we’re ready to help.

erp – best of breed, or single integrated package ?

May 12th, 2010

The article provides a 10-question framework for making the best-of-breed versus integrated suite decision.

There are other practical  factors e.g.:

 - licensing cost there may be a signifcant difference for a specific piece of functionality  e.g. for a Payroll system a specialist payroll solution  may charge only for payroll clerk licences, whereas an erp system  may also  charge for each employee record- so the cost effectiveness of either solution will signifcantly  depend on the number of employees, planned growth, and how long each employee’s record must be retained

- ease of expansion e.g to add other companies in different verticals, with different language, different base currency etc

- ease of integrating to a head office system – connectivity options and costs may also affect the choice

- where are your trading partners headed – self service inquiries? edi? rfid? lean, cross supply chain collaboration?

-  will each component always be compatible with the same operating and database versions – how often does each  they issue new realeses what does this mean for uinterfaces, pgrades and support?

- how easy is to to report, or to integrate to BI or office tools to provide alternative options

- can you build worklofws across the applkciation?

- how will you keep master data conssitent if it is created and maintained in mutliple applications with different fleld size  constraints, different manadatory fields,  different approaches to data e.g dimensions or attributes or structured master data,

-  different security profiles to align,

- what if you wanted to sell some, or all of your business?

- will the IT investment add to your balance sheet as an asset from an investor’s perspective?

- how will the annual maintenance support costs vary if running different systems?

- do solutions come from the same vendor? does he have similar contracts with all the software authors? You do not want multiple different vendors changing prices, support SLAs etc nor to have each blame the other’s software when something does not work.

This is a cautionary tale



Free construction seminar – an integrated solution

May 1st, 2010
Integrated Project Management
Cost Estimation to Completion
We are pleased to invite you for an exclusive seminar that showcases the all new Aurigo BRIX(TM) construction management solution which is transforming the way major construction projects are managed across the globe.
Aurigo BRIX(TM) will streamline your entire estimation, contract management and field inspection processes:

  Venue: Microsoft Offices, Internet City, Dubai
  Date: 6th May 2010
  Time: 8:30 am – Registration and coffee
    09:30 am to 2:30 pm – Seminar
  Please contact Sunita or Mudar for further information:
    04 3374282 / 04 3365589
click here to register now for this informative
FREE event or reach us at

Construction deaths

April 29th, 2010

There has been enough bad news in the construction sector over the last year but the most chilling statistics have just been released in  Abu Dhabi

Deaths due to:
Fall 28
Road traffic 27
Falling object 20
Electricity 13
Machinery 7
Drowning/submersion 4
Fire/flame or hot substance 3
Suffocation 3
Other transport 3
Total 108

That’s more than 2 a week , every week  in one city

Tihis is the first time such figures have been released by a UAE government body and  comes after the welcome  decision to prepare a federal plan setting minimum standards for construction industries in an effort to reduce the numbers of injuries and deaths. Dr Jens Thomsen, section head of occupational and environmental health at HAAD, said it was important to release the figures so “the community at large” were aware of the extent of the problem. We endorse this transparency and strict enforcement of international standards for health and safety.

It is too late for those who have already lost their lives  and there should be a speedy introduction. Such figures are scandalous and in Europe would be considered cause for criminal action.

Contruction Seminar – 6 May 2010 Brix and Microsoft Dynamics Ax

April 22nd, 2010

On 6 May 2010 Synergy Software Systems will presenta Seminar at Microsoft Gulf Offices in the Internet City Dubei to showcase a Microsoft Certified, integrated Construction Software solution,  featuring BRIX from Aurigo Software Technologies and  Microsoft Dynamics Ax 2009.

click here to register now for this informative
FREE event or reach us at

Of the 1,035 infrastructure projects completed between 1992 and 2009 41 per cent faced cost overruns and 82 per cent faced time over-runs.

Currently, time delays on infrastructure projects are estimated to be over 40 per cent while the average cost overrun is estimated to be over 13 per cent in any infrastructure project 

Capital project management systems can completely automate the different facets of project management including, estimation, planning and construction management; and integrate this data into the company’s corporate IT (information technology) infrastructure including ERP (enterprise resource planning), document management systems, GIS (geographic information system), scheduling and other legacy applications, enabling enterprise-wide IT adoption. This helps companies streamline their processes, control costs and reduce delays

Read the full interview article with Balaji Sreenivasan, Founder and CEO, Aurigo Software Technologies in the The Hindu  here: