How has technology streamlined collaboration during the pre-construction process?

How has technology streamlined collaboration during the pre-construction process?


Constructing a model in the early times was the biggest problem which many of the Contactors, designers and owners would have been through. What used to happen was that the Contractors had to go through bundle of paperwork to understand the drawing, design layout and perform pre-construction tasks such as estimating quantity takeoffs, collecting bids from the subcontractor, checking vendor qualification, communicating with owner and identifying design issues within which the Architect and Engineers would resolve these issues in real-time.

Since the advent of Digital technologies it has alleviated the cumbersome task of creating drawings and maintaining the hard copies throughout the lifecycle of the project. The project team must incorporate multiple integrated programs to carry out the pre-construction tasks to rebuild database information into a separate management system. With the rise of digital tools there are chances of committing fewer mistakes in the pre-construction process and reduce risk during the construction phase.

Technological processes that enables collaboration among the pre-construction process

Below are the technological processes that can improve collaboration during the stages of the pre-construction process.

BIM Implementation: – Since BIM has worked out to be successful in carrying out the construction projects, its implementation in the pre-construction process have driven collaboration that binds the trades to complete the project in real-time. BIM process must be planned well at the initial stage of the pre-construction process to create design layout and maintain information within the building model. Through BIM, all the trades coordinate with each other to make accurate and precise design model and boosts collaboration within lifecycle of the project.

This aids in reducing rework and commit lesser mistakes throughout the model. BIM also helps to schedule tasks, know who is responsible for the tasks and estimate cost for the material supplies, quantity take-offs and process. Contractor drives budget estimation at each stage of the design i.e. Schematic Design (SD), Design Development (DD) and Construction Documentation Services (CDs). BIM Software tools such as Assembly, Design Estimation, etc. can be updated in real-time as design processes without relying on the drawings to be published. It enables more replication of quantity take-offs in a given time.   

The ability to track the quantity of material required in the design process in real-time also contributes to the Target Value Design process. This helps to know the cost estimated on the material or the process it tracks and evaluates. By using BIM Services in the design process helps to track the cost and quantity take-off in real-time with frequent updates. The design must be accurate with open communication flow to the architect.

Cloud-Computing: – Collaboration gets enhanced with Cloud computing technique as it makes changes be available in the live model to all the trades working on the project. The changes made in the model through cloud computing is live throughout the lifespan of the project. C4R for Revit is Autodesk’s program which helps the architect to model the project in cloud-based collaboration to assure that the files are saved in the cloud storage.

It works differently from Google Doc, Dropbox, etc. It works on the live version of the model where designs are timely saved and allows the contractor to have real-time access to the design model. Whoever gets involved in the pre-construction process can have direct access to the design model.

The difficult challenge here would be that changes made must be available live to everyone working on the model. BIMallows to track the changes made to the model and makes version comparison which helps them to stay connected throughout the project related issues.

Data enhancement: – Collaboration by data storage is boosted in the construction projects by making the database information stored in a central model that can be updated and view live by trades. It enables BIM Coordination Servicesamong various disciplines involved in the project to make its workflow accurate and smooth. In pre-construction process the data storage tactic would play important role in carrying out design layout as expected and increase communication between trades.

Constructability Reviews: – The project team must review critical issues and details at the design stage such as the interior and exterior of the building model. Past history is browsed to identify critical issues on other projects.  The team needs to identify issues and develop them with a constructability standpoint.

The team would also look after a review of the sequencing of work such as how flashing detail work to application and trade sequencing. The critical details would be both model and detail based. It allows to correct details during design, which saves costs from a rework of correction that can prevent failure in the design of the model as well.


Perhaps, using technology-enabled collaboration during the pre-construction process can provide accurate budgets, wastes and reduced efforts. BIM and Cloud Collaboration are just technological tools which help to store, save the files and save costs on the design of the model. Pre-construction in the projects need to plan well the materials, design layout and other tasks to be carried out in making a better decision.

Written By:
Bhagwati Pathak
Bhagwati Pathak is an Executive Director at Tesla Outsourcing Services. Technical Project Management, BIM, Client Management, and Leadership are her forte. With an expertise in BIM and a flair for writing, her articles provide a direction to contractors, sub-contractors, engineers, and architects in employing the right methodology for an Architectural, Structural, or MEP CAD / BIM project.

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