A better workflow was high on the wish list when Jonas Medberg and Sara Lundquist took over the architectural agency LuMe Arkitekter AB in Malmö. Therefore, the agency's many software applications were replaced by a single one – Archicad - that could manage all their needed tasks. This put an end to their time-consuming navigation between several different applications. This also gave everyone a common tool and by that, also increased understanding of the projects. Instead of time spent on solving software problems, architects now have greater freedom when creating.
When Jonas Medberg and Sara Lundquist took over the architectural firm LuMe Arkitekter AB in Malmö last year, they carried an important idea. They wanted to introduce a more obvious and common way of working that would pervade the entire agency's operations with a clear goal: a better workflow.
At the agency, seven employees work mainly with projects for the private sector, with everything from new production to alterations to existing buildings. Current projects right now are a health center in Bara, outside Malmö, for a private property owner, and an apartment building project in Malmö.
Archicad replaced several software and freed up time
How to create a better workflow? For the agency, it's all about scaling off everything that is considered to be time consuming and by that becomes an obstacle in daily work. To cut bottlenecks in the workflow, and for all seven employees to have an equivalent work process in the same system. A goal to free up resources and time to give greater space for creativity and freedom.
"Previously, we worked quite scattered", says Jonas Medberg. "A project has different phases and we had a program for each phase. At the beginning we worked with sketches and modeling in SketchUp. We then proceeded with Revit, among other things, to produce drawings, and then the next step - for visualization and presentation – yet another application would be used. We also handled additional software for other tasks."
This was not very effective, Jonas remembers.
"Running a project with a number of different software meant a lot of downtime. We could not directly use the digital information from one application to the next, without a comprehensive hands-on that wasted time. Exporting and importing between the applications also consumed a lot of time and there was never a smooth transition between them".
Several software also caused problems in the work process.
"There was a difference in the employees' competence in all the applications used. You then had to wait for “your turn” in this process to get a task performed in the application that you did not master".
That working process is history now. Instead of using several applications, only one is valid at the architectural firm today.
"Archicad has everything that the other applications together could do, but in a better developed approach. Now that we have switched to Archicad, everyone in the office works with the same application, which contributes to an increased understanding of all the work steps included in the project. We become more flexible and get the workflow we wanted originally".
Smooth work process with logical structure
It is not just the workflow that has been improved with Archicad. The software provides benefits that the other applications did not provide in the same way, says Jonas.
"I think it is easy to navigate in the default structure of the software. When, for example, a building permit is to be produced and various processes needs to be handled - such as the elements´ structure and dimensions - there will be many tasks involved. I then experience that Archicad is easier to work with than Revit. It is also more visually optimized with icons, which shortens the path to a result".
Another advantage that Jonas highlights is the financial aspect, and Archicad is a more cost-effective solution.
Quicker start-up for the architects
The transition to Archicad is not fully completed yet, but some projects are today processed in this new CAD system. The start-up was swift thanks to Nolliplan's training and support, which has helped immensely, says Jonas. The fact that some architects already had experience with Archicad was also of great help.
Even though Revit is a past stage at the agency, they have still retained a few licenses for practical reasons.
"We will keep those Revit licenses to be able to handle old models in existing projects, when it comes to complementary minor adjustments. In case of major changes, it may be relevant that we instead transfer the building information to Archicad and continue to work with it there".
When a software can do the same thing as several applications combined, the architects get a higher quality in the workflow. The workflow runs more evenly, and unnecessary set-up time is cut off. Greater freedom that frees up creativity and more time is spent on projects instead of solving technical software issues. The architects have succeeded in creating what they have longed for, a better flow in their work process.