The top challenges specifiers face

Submitted by Katy Tomasulo on Wed, 11/18/2020 - 21:52
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The most recent edition of the "],[0,[0],1,"Deltek Clarity Architecture \u0026 Engineering Industry Report"],[0,[],0," explored one of the most critical, yet least recognized, steps in the design process \u2014 construction specifications. The survey results identified eight areas where the A\u0026E industry is most challenged when it comes to construction specifications. "]]],[1,"p",[[0,[],0,"As part of the 41"],[0,[1],1,"st"],[0,[],0," Deltek Clarity A\u0026E Industry Report, the study asked A\u0026E leaders for their top construction specification challenges. Here\u2019s a look at their top challenges \u2014 and the vision Deltek has for addressing those challenges. "]]],[1,"p",[]],[10,0],[1,"h3",[[0,[2],1,"Lack of spec writers and firm knowledge transfer"]]],[1,"p",[[0,[],0,"Typically, specification writers are some of the most experienced and seasoned professionals within an A\u0026E firm, which means many are approaching retirement. The hard truth is, replacing a spec writer is difficult. What\u2019s more, if your spec writer retires, all of the cumulative years of building materials knowledge walks out the door with them. What impact would that have on your firm? In addition to losing the human resource, many firms are struggling to capture and share this type of institutional knowledge and best practices. "]]],[1,"h3",[[0,[2],1,"Collaboration among project stakeholders"]]],[1,"p",[[0,[],0,"There are many moving parts and multiple stakeholders involved in a design project. Given the number of project participants, it\u2019s easy to see how elements of the project can become silos. Each participant has their areas of expertise, and that can make collaboration among the team very challenging. As the Clarity Survey results show, there is a common understanding that there needs to be greater collaboration across the project team to create a complete project\u2019s specs package. "]]],[1,"p",[[0,[],0,"Breaking down project silos and working collaboratively will provide better communication and understanding between the various disciplines throughout the project lifecycle while maximizing project quality, profitability, and owner satisfaction. Without collaboration on the specs front, it will take a long time for best practices to filter through the firm, which leads to the lack of firm knowledge transfer. "]]],[1,"h3",[[0,[2],1,"Limited time and staff resources for specs "]]],[1,"p",[[0,[],0,"Construction specifications are a necessary step in a successful building project. The process of researching and selecting appropriate building products to support the design, in addition to writing the specifications and producing a project manual, is a time-consuming process. Factor into this situation that spec writers are in short supply, and many firms just don\u2019t have the personnel or bandwidth. When this happens, firms have no choice but to delegate spec duties to other team members, such as project managers and designers, in addition to their existing responsibilities. This scenario is a red flag for potential rework and RFIs, which can lead to budget overruns and schedule delays."]]],[1,"h3",[[0,[2],1,"Access to reliable building products information"]]],[1,"p",[[0,[],0,"Architects and engineers are the design creators who need up-to-date and trusted building product information to compare and select products to ensure the design vision and intent are realized. Many firms repurpose office masters, subscribe to master guide specification resources, and search the internet as their \u201cgo to\u201d methods for obtaining building products information. The problem becomes keeping these resources up-to-date and reliable \u2014 office masters can quickly become outdated, subscriptions to master guides don\u2019t get renewed, and product manufacturer websites are not always current. This all adds up to potentially specifying products that may not actually meet your design requirements."]]],[1,"h3",[[0,[2],1,"Lack of integrated technologies for specs and design"]]],[1,"p",[[0,[],0,"Technology moves fast, but building projects generally don\u2019t. CAD and BIM are just two of the most revolutionary technologies to aid architects and engineers. But where are the technologies that integrate specifications with the design? There are a few solutions that integrate specs with Revit \u2014 Deltek\u2019s "],[0,[3],1,"e-SPECS for Revit"],[0,[],0," is one such solution \u2014 but overall the industry is in dire need of technology that integrates the various disciplines of the project lifecycle to streamline and bring collaboration among all project stakeholders."]]],[1,"h3",[[0,[2],1,"It\u2019s time to address these challenges "]]],[1,"p",[[0,[],0,"There are four key elements that are part of a cyclical process when developing specifications. Resource and leverage your community of professional peers and building product industry experts to make the best product decisions for the design. Use the latest design automation tools that give you the power to write specs and produce project manuals using your firm\u2019s best practices, and measure the execution of the products selected and their performance. By implementing protocols to repeatedly utilize these four grounding principles, your firm will save time, be more efficient, and increase project profitability potential."]]],[1,"p",[]],[10,1],[1,"h3",[[0,[2],1,"What are AIA and Deltek doing to address these issues and lead industry change?"]]],[1,"p",[[0,[],0,"Deltek is a strategic partner with industry-leading organizations like the AIA to help us make informed decisions about the current and future needs of practitioners. Deltek is committed to delivering a change to the A\u0026E industry for how specifications are viewed, and to bringing a revolutionary next-generation specification solution to the market. "]]],[1,"p",[[0,[],0,"With the foundational power of AIA MasterSpec, Deltek"],[0,[2],1," "],[0,[],0,"is developing a new cloud-based software solution to transform how building product manufacturers and A\u0026E firms collaborate on one platform throughout the project lifecycle to address four critical areas needed for successful projects: Community, Best Practices, Design Automation, and Measure."]]],[3,"ul",[[[0,[],0,"Community: Build a community of collaboration to bridge the gap that\u2019s existed for too long between project disciplines and building product experts and remove the silos of information to help one another and ensure the right building products are selected to achieve design goals."]],[[0,[],0,"Best practices: Leverage the knowledge inherent at your firm by capturing firm and client preferences, based on project types while resourcing up-to-date peer-reviewed product content, to intelligently research and select products and efficiently write specs."]],[[0,[],0,"Design automation: Streamline and bring ease of use to the process of writing specifications by taking your firm\u2019s knowledge and best practices, deployed within a tool that brings efficiencies to product selection, spec writing, and producing project manuals."]],[[0,[],0,"Measure: At the end of the day, it\u2019s all about how well the products selected executed in the project and achieved design intent. It\u2019s critical to document lessons learned so you can more effectively make decisions for the success of future projects by leveraging past project information."]]]],[1,"p",[[0,[],0,"In a world of constant change, there is no better time than now to identify your firm\u2019s biggest specifications challenges. There is always room for improvement. Develop a strategy to overcome identified obstacles and put a plan in action to make needed changes. All project participants will benefit from implementing improved processes for delivering project specifications."]]],[1,"p",[[0,[],0,"Together with AIA, Deltek is developing resources and educational programming to support architects who want to take a leading role in the specification process for their firms."]]],[1,"p",[[0,[],0,"AIA and Deltek represent the strongest partnership in the industry regarding specifications. Working together, we are evolving the guide specifications in AIA MasterSpec to ensure architects, engineers, and specifiers have the most accurate information to build an informed, two-dimensional version of a building\u2019s design."]]],[1,"p",[[0,[4],0,"Deltek empowers your firm to deliver the speed of design and the breadth of services that your clients demand. Our project-based solutions can be seamlessly and securely delivered on-premise or via the Cloud and can help A\u0026E firms manage the complete project lifecycle, including business development, specification management, project management, talent management, document management, and financial management. Whether you\u2019re a small growing firm, or a larger sophisticated organization, Deltek has the right solution for you. Visit "],[0,[5],1,"\/aeresources"],[0,[],1," to learn more."]]],[1,"p",[[0,[6],1,"AIA does not sponsor or endorse any enterprise, whether \npublic or private, operated for profit. Further, no AIA officer, \ndirector, committee member, or employee, or any of its component \norganizations in his or her official capacity, is permitted to approve, \nsponsor, endorse, or do anything that may be deemed or construed to be \nan approval, sponsorship, or endorsement of any material of construction\n or any method or manner of handling, using, distributing, or dealing in\n any material or product."]]]]}
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In its Clarity Architecture & Engineering Industry Report, AIA partner Deltek reveals top concerns A&E firms face with specifications and how to address them.
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