We have recently been releasing more enhancements to NBS Create. It’s been a pretty busy year at NBS and as an R+D Team we have been splitting our time looking at fixes, performance enhancements and also new functionality. I've got a series of five blog posts that look at some of these enhancements. This is the third of the five posts.
One piece of functionality that is very much appreciated in NBS Building is the “pie”. The pie indicates how many clauses in a work section are not “ticked” or “crossed”. Figure 1 below shows that the work section.
|Figure 1 - The much loved "pie-of-completeness"|
As NBS Create is additive and the specification content develops through the timeline, it is not possible for the software to estimate what percentage of the specification is incomplete. The specifier may have been tasked to write an outline specification, this may develop into a performance specification as part of a set of employer’s requirements. In time, the specification may grow further into a full specification that is then split into packages for sub-contractors. The performance clauses stating the original design requirements may be hidden as the manufacturer products and execution is specified. Finally, the performance clauses may be re-invoked to form part of an “as-built” specification with a record of both each system’s original design performance and also the proprietary products that formed part of each system to satisfy its performance.
So… how can the software help specifiers see what areas of their specifications need attention for any particular stage? The conclusion we came to was that the best approach was to report on the empty values. These are the inserts in the clauses that are still blank. Figure 2 shows this indicator in the status bar. Figure 3 shows that this displays a report listing these empty values. The user may then click on these items and complete the specification.
|Figure 2 - Empty values are indicated on the status bar|
|Figure 3 - The Empty Value report shows the decisions that are outstanding|
|Figure 4 - Publishing options for empty values|
|Figure 5 - Standard text placed in every empty value|
|Figure 6 - Outstanding decisions left for the contractor|