Bluebeam Public Sector Organizations

How the Public Sector Can Work More Collaboratively with Bluebeam

The collaboration advantages of using Bluebeam mean more effective working, a quicker return on investment and better-quality outcomes

Local authorities and other public sector organizations work around the clock to deliver a range of essential services for their communities.

Increasingly, they do this against a backdrop of increasing financial strain, with some predicting that a growing number will hit the reserve funds in coming months or declare bankruptcy.

With resources under pressure, more local authorities are turning to digital technology to assess, approve and monitor project delivery.

This article looks at how Bluebeam can help public sector organizations respond collaboratively to the needs of their communities and businesses, saving both time and money, but not at the expense of quality.

Time Saved, Standards Maintained

Time is money. Where a system like Bluebeam comes into its own is its ability to make stakeholders’ resources count, increase the effectiveness of the delivery team and ensure the product is being delivered to the highest standard.

Bluebeam allows project teams to digitally collaborate in real time and access their work on any device. This means office and field staff are always in sync.

Using Bluebeam also makes it easy to invite internal and external team members from anywhere in the world to markup documents together more efficiently.

Private Sector Experience

The private sector has been on board with this for some time. Take UK developer Ballymore, responsible for delivering Wardian London, comprising two tall residential towers in the Canary Wharf district of the capital.

Terry Arnold, Wardian’s project director, says Bluebeam Studio Sessions in Revu allows for full collaboration across the design team, even before a project breaks ground.

“You can be in different parts of the world, or different parts of the country, and still review the drawing at the same time,” he says. “That will generate cost savings not just for on-site, but consultant cost time as well.”

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Using Bluebeam means storing and managing entire projects in the cloud is straightforward, while team members can be invited to access documents securely and edit them on the move.

Documents can be marked up at the same time together, with edits and comments automatically tracked. And collaboration permissions can be customized to ensure the right people have access to the right information.

Collaboration Through Digitization

Many organizations still use paper documentation in their planning and approvals departments. With the complex workflows involved, reliance on well-established systems is understandable, yet this can lead to lengthy delivery times for projects.

That an entire project team can digitally annotate documents is a huge positive, and providing stakeholders with the opportunity to work collaboratively during the design, build and handover stages of a project is Bluebeam’s strength. Moreover, being able to access and annotate plans and documents online is proving to be a boost not only for private businesses but also the public sector.  

In California, Merced County’s building inspectorate switched to Bluebeam a few years ago.

According to Charlie Mendenhall, the county’s supervising building inspector for local plan reviews, Bluebeam has boosted internal collaboration, while communications between the different divisions and departments have improved to the point that everyone can see corrections and comments made to a set of submittal documents.

“It also saves more time,” Mendenhall said, “since there tends to be a lot of overlap in reviews; users who see something has already received a correction can move forward instead of duplicating the work.”  

Better Communication Across a Project

Across the Atlantic in South Wales, Merthyr Tydfil County Borough Council (MTCBC) wanted to build a new bus terminal in the town, one that would be a modern transport hub fit for the 21st century.

To deliver what was a complex project, MTCBC needed to collaborate closely with developer Morgan Sindall and architect Capita—not an easy task in the middle of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Real-time collaboration across the project was enhanced by Bluebeam’s Design Review tools. These allowed the project partners to mark up and collaborate on the same documents in real time or remotely. This meant the team could communicate project data better, with customized, in-depth annotations.

All markups appeared in an integrated, customizable list for easy tracking, while the team could also save and organize custom markups in the tool chest, using features like PDF Markups, which add annotations like text, highlights or callouts to documents.

Ross Williams, site manager and project lead at Morgan Sindall, made the most of Bluebeam’s capabilities to communicate change openly and transparently.

Reflecting on the team’s day-to-day experience with Bluebeam, Williams said when a feature is both clear and simple, “it’s really striking for those who use it.”

The entire delivery team worked more efficiently, opting for collaboration over confrontation, while forming a series of exceptionally open, supportive relationships. This meant that the team pushed to exceed the expectations of the brief, making choices that would benefit both the local economy and environment, Williams noted.

Greater Productivity, Better Served

The built environment has always been a collaborative business, embracing designers, planners, engineers, contractors and suppliers, developers and clients.

As the industry seeks to work better and become more productive, whether that’s through modern methods of construction, using more sustainably sourced materials or greater use of technology, recognizing digital software’s potential is more important than ever.

For those cash-strapped local authorities and public sector organizations that are having to work even harder to deliver the services that their communities and businesses rely on, this is particularly pertinent.

How Bluebeam Can Help the Public Sector with Design Review