Vico Guest Blogger Series

New Virtual Construction Best Practices from Vico

Posted by Holly Allison on Tue, Aug 28, 2012 @ 11:07 AM


It’s been a busy summer here at Vico.  We’ve rolled out six new best practices that we’ve implemented in our work with construction companies around the world.  But with summer vacation schedules and new projects starting, you may have missed the news on one of the items.  So here’s a quick recap of new Virtual Construction Best Practices from Vico. 


BIM Grading Service

Can you re-use a design model for construction coordination, scheduling, and estimating?  The Vico BIM Quality Assessment Service will give you a definitive answer. Our comprehensive evaluation grades the model across eight disciplines.  This "report card" grades the model for completeness for 4D scheduling and 5D estimating and calculate its grade per element per system.


This is a flat-fee service priced at $2,000 and takes ten business days to complete. All we need to get started is the project drawings, the BIM(s), and a signed contract. This is a very reasonable cost and turn-around time for the project stakeholders to learn whether or not the BIM model(s) can be re-used throughout the project lifecycle. After all, the Owner shouldn’t have to pay for one model for visualization and design intent…and yet another set of BIMs to gain the construction efficiencies.


bim grading report card


Learn more with these resources:

Webinar: Grade Your Models for Construction

Blog: See How Your Models Stack Up

Service: BIM Quality Assessment and Grading

Train: Ask us to train your experts to do this inspection and grading


Coordination Resolution

The Vico Coordination Resolution process is a Lean Construction approach to clash and includes five phases: modeling; resolving clashes with our System Priority Structure; working with the design team and engineers on key issues; working with the subs to increase the level of detail; and finally a 6D model which includes submittals and materials preferences. Two other benefits from this process include the 2D installation drawings and composite drawings.


Typically, our process is 40% faster than traditional coordination efforts because of our System Priority Structure. We have developed a weighted system for evaluating clashes and determining which system to fix first. These decisions are dependent upon labor factors, as well as material factors, and our own rule not to compromise design and diagrammatic intent. We are also very rigorous and methodical starting our coordination process to mirror the construction workflow. We can teach your BIM Department or Special Ops Team how to perform this service so you can offer it to your clients.


coordination resolution 

Learn more with these resources:

Webinar: Coordination Resolution – A Lean Approach to Clash

Blog: Good Intention – Better Process

Service: Lean Coordination

Train: Ask us to train your experts to deploy this new practice


CPM Alignment

Many Owners and GCs like to compare their CPM schedule to a location-based schedule to see where there might be areas for improvement, risk mitigation, resource balancing, etc. The Vico CPM Alignment Service does just that.  In two to four weeks, we translate your activity-based CPM schedule into a Location-Based schedule, complete with Flowline view for successfully orchestrating trades.  We also provide a fully-optimized schedule alternative so you can compare and contrast the two approaches.


The service takes two to four weeks and includes a Schedule Optimization Workshop for your team to review the basic tenets of Location-Based Scheduling and a Production Control Workshop to learn how to better control the project on the jobsite.


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Learn more with these resources:

Webinar: CPM Match

Whitepaper: Comparing Tradition CPM to Location-Based Scheduling

Service: CPM Alignment


Working with Concept-Stage SketchUp Models

SketchUp models are very popular with General Contractors because they can create a concept stage model very quickly. With the new Vico best practice for harvesting or data mining past BIM projects, we can calculate more precise quantity rations per building type. When applied to a concept stage model of any type (SketchUp, Revit, ArchiCAD, Tekla), we can produce very detailed estimates and schedules.


We start by mining past project quantities from three or more similar BIM models. Calculating ratios will generate forecast/statistical bills of materials and resource requirements ready to accept unit costs. We then refine the Cost Plan with project specific details and roll up the systems to produce draft Target Costs per system. The conceptual stage outputs are detailed forecast quantities married to today’s unit costs and combined with historical productivity figures to create a baseline schedule, resource demand curves, and cashflow.


concept-stage sketchup models in vico office


Learn more with these resources:

Webinar: Detailed Estimating and Scheduling with SketchUp Models

Blog: Mine Past Projects for Quantity Ratios

Train: Ask us to train your estimators to do conceptual work with SketchUp and Vico Office


Using Timberline and MC2 in Model-Based Estimates

Many construction firms have invested heavily in creating Timberline or MC2 estimating databases. Unfortunately, the platforms haven’t evolved to handle projects which include BIM. This is where another Vico Best Practice bridges the traditional 2D world and the new 5D world of models. Consider this your Lean Construction transition to BIM-based estimating: leveraging your current costing database and applying it to new model-based projects.


We can help you transfer the data stored in your estimating database and apply it to a new project where the Owner has asked for BIM deliverables and reports.


bridge 2D estimating to 5D cost planning in vico office


Learn more with these resources:

Webinar: Connecting Timberline and MC2 to BIM Projects

Train: Ask us to train your estimators to connect your legacy database to Vico Office


Data Collection during Production Control

If you’re a fan of Location-Based Management System, you know that creating and planning the optimal schedule is only one-half the battle.  The other half is collecting actuals on the jobsite in order to compare the baseline schedule to the forecasted schedule and make any course corrections.


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Dr. Seppanen has been serial blogging our best practices for collecting this data on-site.  Be sure to stay current with the articles:


Best Practices for Data Collection on LBMS Projects

Part 1: Beyond Start Dates

Part 2: Get the Subs Involved

Part 3: Manpower and Suspensions


Train: Ask us to train your planners, superintendents, and your subs on pull planning, schedule optimization, and production control


We hope your team will incorporate these Virtual Construction Best Practices into your workflow.  We know how important it is to you to go above and beyond Owner expectations – and these new best practices are designed to help you do just that.  Count on Vico to lead the way.



Tags: virtual construction best practice, bim report card, concept-stage sketchup models, timberline, mc2 in model-based estimates, bim best practice, cpm match, coordination resolution, construction best practices, production control