Construction, engineering and architecture projects have often continued to stop and start through the global pandemic -- yet at the same time project companies and their clients alike, remain concerned about the risks of home visits and on-site team logistics and operations.

That's where Bluebeam Revu's quantity and estimation workflow features can accurately help project teams stay on track even off-site. All the planning and quantities work can still be done online from anywhere, whether in the home or office.

As Cadgroup Australia national technical manager Deepak Maini explains in this blog by Mike Landers for Bluebeam, often site visits can be needed to double-check quantity measurements.

When Maini's own home was having a new floor fitted, for example, takeoffs were 22% off an initial contractor estimate. The cost ramifications of having to do this are obvious.

"I realised they didn’t have the right tools," Maini said. "Had I known about Revu back then, I would have told them: 'You are not only wasting your time, you’re also wasting my time. If you use this tool, you’ll be a lot more accurate.'"

Revu includes automatic prompts for setting scale and can calibrate a PDF to a single scale or to separate X and Y scales as needed, as well as setting multiple measurement scales on the same PDF using viewports.

"You don’t always know whether those sheets have been printed to the right scale or not. Calibration ensures that we use the right scale and we get the right measurements," Maini said.

"When it comes to taking off regions and areas and so on, Revu has got some really smart tools that let you snap onto the corner points of the areas and you can really easily take off those quantities."

Increased precision, at speed

Taking off quantities can be a repetitive process, and if you have multiple people working on several bid packages at once, having a standard set of tools also makes work consistent and efficient for everyone concerned.

Markups such as coloured hatch patterns and symbols, such as lighting fixtures, can be saved as a custom tool set in Revu and shared with other users.

Maini said that measuring carpeted areas, for example, requires a tool that can tell you which type of carpet you have. If this information is fed through Revu, the system can be standardised to ensure that everyone in a team is doing consistent quantity takeoffs with the right tools.

Users can also quickly know the value and price estimates of materials within Revu by setting up Custom Columns in the Markups List. This allows a user to associate a markup for a carpet type with the unit price of that carpet and assign a monetary value to the takeoff.

"I got a call from a customer bidding on this massive job and he had a PDF file with 56 sheets in it and he wanted to take off quantities, especially some certain symbols like electrical fixtures and so on. Revu's VisualSearch allowed him to drag a box around the item that he needed to search for, not only on that sheet, and it took him two minutes to count about 2,870 items," Maini said.

"Imagine doing that manually. There’s no way you could do that."

Click here to read the full Bluebeam blog post.