Vico Guest Blogger Series

Four Favorite Features in Vico Office Release 4

Posted by Holly Allison on Wed, Feb 20, 2013 @ 07:40 AM

Have you had the chance to upgrade to Vico Office Release 4?  If you haven’t yet, please be sure to check with your System Administrator to review the upgrade steps.


We believe Release 4 is another watershed release, designed to get even more construction professionals involved with BIM.  We also solved practical issues like better quantity takeoffs from the models you build and receive and improved the performance speed based on real-world projects.  Here are our four favorite features from the new release.  And if the quotes from our customers are any indication, they will be yours, too!


1.)    It’s wicked fast.  We’re not in kindergarten playing with blocks – our customers are working in production on some of the most complex structures we’ve ever seen.  To that end, we knew we had jack up the horsepower in the Vico Office engine.  During the beta testing phase, our customers reported back the following transaction times:

    Dashboard Performance improvements:

    i.      50% faster in a 20-project work environment

    ii.     50% faster in a 500-project work environment

    Publishing a standard XYZ-element model:

    i.      73% faster

    Cost Planner tasks with 50,000 line items:

    i.      Open cost plan view – 90% faster

    3D View loading:

    i.      80% faster


    According to one of our UK customers, “The speed is breath-taking!”


    2.)    Work with the pieces you need.  There are two new features in Release 4 that help you streamline your work: Activation Options and Publish Filtered Models.  New activation options such as Assembly Code, Keynote, Material, Class, and Size means greater precision defining the Takeoff Items…and less painting with the quantities after activation.  Publish Filtered Models means just that – use the incredibly powerful filtering tool inside Revit to break the model down into manageable pieces and publish only that content to Vico Office.  This gives users more control to QA the models and remove unnecessary elements to focus on what is truly important.


    According to Austin Baker at Hathaway Dinwiddie in Los Angeles, “As the critical link between geometry and our budget, enhanced Model Activation options provide us greater control over our workflow and its output. Thanks Vico!”


    Amy Oreto, an Estimating Systems Administrator with Suffolk Construction in Boston added, "The filtered view is AWESOME!!  Total life saver!  Now I don't have to save nine different models. Please tell the programmers 'THANK YOU!!!!!'  What a HUGE time saver for me."


    3.)    Modeling that makes a difference.  Imagine you’re the team who needs to do all the sleeve inserts prior to a concrete pour.  What in the world does BIM have to do with you?  Or imagine that you’re the sub who wants to prefab some pipe runs, but can’t really trust the drawing tolerances?  What does BIM have to do with you?  Enter Vico Layout Manager – a new module in Release 4 that streamlines the field placement of MEPF right from Vico Office and your Trimble gear.  Talk about a point and shoot solution: just combine your relevant models in Vico Office, apply your Location Breakdown Structure, and map out your layout points.  Now the team can shoot these points on-site…and guess what?  Now you don’t have to guess about the sleeve inserts; now you don’t have to guess about prefab decisions.  BIM just got a lot smarter.

    According to Bill Klorman at Klorman Construction, “Vico’s Layout Manager has really filled in a big gap for our project teams.  Until now, we needed someone from our VDC Department that had BIM expertise to create layout files that could work with our Robotic Total Stations.  Now team members that don’t use BIM authoring tools can easily create critical layout points to ensure accurate layout whether for the superstructure, substructure or MEPs.”


    4.)    Open the door to Civil and Infrastructure projects.  We always knew that BIM was applicable across all types of construction, not just vertical.  But we wanted some time in the Vico Labs and out on the jobsite to prove it.  The verdict in is: bring it on.  With our new Publishers for AutoCAD Architecture 2013 and AutoCAD MEP 2013, we got to work on new projects ranging from airport runways, to culverts, to nuclear reactors.  We have a whole new crop of best practices to share – so if your firm specializes in civil and infrastructure projects, we’ve got a top-notch solution for you, too.


    According to Brian Melton, BIM Director, Black & Veatch Water Division, “We were able to leverage the products that Vico already had in place along with these new publishers to support our water/wastewater treatment plant projects.  We plan to use Vico Office for many of our complex infrastructure projects moving forward.”


    As we head into spring, look for Fridays with Vico webinars which address this new functionality.  You’ll get to see the workflows and unique functionality for each new solution up close and personal.  But don’t forget that your team can still get started with our Structured Evaluation Program and learn how 3D coordination, 4D scheduling, and 5D estimating slide together in Vico Office.  After all, if you’re not leveraging BIM into your critical departments, it’s time to get started.  Then, just as you’re wrapping up the basics, you’ll be ready for all that is new in Release 4.

    Tags: vico office r4, vico layout manager, vico office performance improvements, publish filtered models, civil and infrastructure projects, publishers, autocad architecture, autocad mep, model activation options